אדיר הוא | Awesome One: an Alphabetical English Interpretation by Isaac Gantwerk Mayer of the piyyut Adir Hu

Adir Hu, a classic Pesaḥ song if ever there was one, is a part of Seder tables all over the planet. Its alphabetical list of God’s attributes, combined with its repeated pleas for a return to Jerusalem, make it a classic, to the point where the traditional German farewell greeting for Passover was not “chag sameach” or “gut yontef” but “bau gut” – build well. This interpretation, while not a direct translation by any means, has the same rhythmic pattern and alphabetical structure, giving a sense of the greatness of God.

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אַדִּיר הוּא, אַדִּיר הוּא
יִבְנֶה בֵּיתוֹ בְּקָרוֹב.
בִּמְהֵרָה, בִּמְהֵרָה, בְּיָמֵינוּ בְּקָרוֹב.
אֵל בְּנֵה, אֵל בְּנֵה,
בְּנֵה בֵּיתְךָ בְּקָרוֹב.
Awesome One, Awesome One,
Build your Temple quickly
Speedily, speedily, in our days, build it quickly.
Build it, God! Build it, God!
Build your Temple quickly!

Blessed One, Creator One, Deity One,

Essential One, Foremost One, Greatest One,
Holy One, Ineffable One, Judging One,

Knowing One, Lasting One, Merciful One,
Noble One, Original One, Powerful One,

Quintessential One, Righteous One, Supreme One,
Truthful One, Unlimited One, Vast One, Willing One,

Xenial One, You are One, Zealous One

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