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תרומה הבדילנו | T’rumah Hivdilanu (A Gift Distinguished Us) — A Poetic Ḳiddush for the Pesaḥ Seder, according to two of its nusḥaot (ca. 9th c.)

Rav Saadia Gaon lists three additions to the Seder Pesaḥ which he considers not necessary, but acceptable. This is the first, a poetic version of the Ḳiddush. Interestingly enough, it is still recited in many Yemenite communities, which are in general less likely to incorporate poetic sections to their liturgy. Here it is recorded and translated into English according to two nusḥaot — that recorded in the siddur of Rav Saadia (marked in blue), and that recorded in modern Yemenite texts (marked in red). In cases where only the spelling differs rather than the meaning, the editor generally went with Rav Saadia as the older variant.

Note: “The CAUSE” is used to translate the Divine Name YHVH, based on the philosophical idea of God as the Prime Mover and on the interpretation of the Name as a causative form of the copula – “causes to be.”

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Source (Hebrew) Translation (English)

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה
יהוה אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ
מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם
בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּפֶֽן׃
Blessed are You,
CAUSE our God,
Sovereign of Eternity,
who created the vine-fruit.

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה
יהוה אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ
מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם
אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָֽׁנוּ מִכׇּל־עָם
וְרוֹמְמָֽנוּ מִכׇּל־לָשוֹן
בָּחַר־בָּֽנוּ וַיְגַדְּלֵֽנוּ
רָצָה־בָנוּ וַיְפַאֲרֵֽנוּ׃
Blessed are You,
CAUSE our God,
Sovereign of Eternity,
who sanctified us over all peoples
and exalted us over all tongues
THEY[1] This translation uses the pluralis majestatis to refer to the Divine. This is not meant to imply that God is more than one ḥas v’shalom but rather to reflect the vastness and majesty of God while also avoiding gendered language. See Ibn Ezra’s commentary on Genesis 1:1 for a discussion of the pluralis majestatis when referring to God.  chose us and greatened us,
desired us and glorified us.

תְּרוּמָה הִבְדִּילָֽנוּ‏ מִכׇּל־עָם
אֶֽרֶץ חֶמְדָּה הִנְחִיל אוֹתָֽנוּ
קִדַּשׁ אֶת־שְׁמוֹ בָּעוֹלָם כֻּלּוֹ
בִּגְלַל אָבוֹת שֶׁעָֽשוּ אֶת־רְצוֹנוֹ
גְּבוּרוֹת רָבּוֹת עָשָׂה לְמַעֲנֵֽהוּ
וְאֵין חֵֽקֶר לְנִפְלְאוֹתָיו׃
A gift distinguished us from all peoples
a pleasant land promised to us.
THEY sanctified the name in the world entire,
for the sake of the ancestors who did the divine will.
Great deeds aplenty THEY did for them,
and there is no accounting THEIR wonders.

עֲדַת קְדוֹשִׁים אוֹתָֽנוּ קָרָא
כֶּֽרֶם חֶמְדָּה נֶטַע‏ שַׁעֲשֻׁעִים
וַיִּקְרָאֵם סְגוּלָה לִשְׁמוֹ
רֵאשִׁית לְקָחָם מִכׇּל־גּוֹיֵי הָאֲרָצוֹת
A sacred gathering THEY called us,
a pleasant vineyard planted with merriment,
And THEY called them treasured to THEIR name,
took them first from all the earth’s nations,

שֶׁהֵם מְשׁוּלִים בִּצְבָא מָרוֹם
וּמְכוֹנָנִים כְּכוֹכְבֵי הָרָקִֽיעַ
וַיִּהְיוּ עֶלְיוֹנִים בְּקֶֽרֶב תֵּבֵל
וְנִכְבָּדִים עַל־כׇּל־הָאֻמּוֹת
זִיו פְּנֵיהֶם כְּזִיו הַשֶּֽׁמֶשׁ
וּמַרְאֵה דְמוּתָם כְּמַלְאֲכֵי הַשָּׁרֵת׃
For they are parallel to the multitude Above,
and accounted as the stars of heaven,
And are highest in the midst of the land,
and most honored of all the countries;
Their faces glow like the face of the sun,
and their appearance is likened to the ministering angels.

לָהֶם יִרְאוּ מְלָכִים וָקָֽמוּ
שָׂרִים וְיִשְׁתַּחֲווּ
לְמַֽעַן יהוה צְבָאוֹת אֲשֶׁר נֶאֲמָן
קְדוֹשׁ יִשְׂרָאֵל כִּי
בָּם־בָּחַר׃
To them kings will be in awe and arise,
princes, and will bow.
On account of the CAUSE of Multitudes who is trusted,
the Sanctity of Israel who
chose them.

כׇּל־רֹאֵֽיהֶם יַכִּירוּם
כִּי־הֵם זֶֽרַע בֵּרַךְ יהוה׃
All who see them will recognize them
that they are a seed blessed by the CAUSE,

וַיְקַדְּשֵֽׁנוּ קְדֻשַּׁת עוֹלָם
וּשְׁמוֹ הַגָּדוֹל עָלֵֽינוּ קָרָא
אוֹתָֽנוּ קָרָא עֵדָה לִשְׁמוֹ
סְגֻלָּה וְנַחֲלָה מִיְּמוֹת עוֹלָם׃
THEY sanctified them with an eternal sanctity,
and THEIR great Name THEY called over us.
THEY called us a congregation to THEIR name,
a treasure and portion from days of eternity.

וַיְקָרְבֵֽנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר־סִינַי
וַיַּגִּישֵֽׁנוּ לִפְנֵי חוֹרֵב׃
וַיּוֹרִישֵֽׁנוּ דִּבְרֵי חַיִּים
כְּתוּבִים בְּאֶצְבַּע הֲדָרוֹ׃
And THEY drew us near to Mount Sinai,
congregated us before Ḥorev.
And granted us words of life,
written with the finger of THEIR splendor.

וַיַּֽעַשׂ לָנוּ נִסִּין וּגְבוּרוֹת
וַיִּפְרְקֵֽנוּ מִצָּרֵינוּ
וַיִּגְאָלֵֽנוּ מִיַּד אוֹיֵב
וַיּוֹשִׁיעֵנוּ מִיַּד שׂוֹנֵא׃
And THEY did for us miracles and wonders,
and saved us from our stressors,
And redeemed us from the hand of the enemy,
and rescued us from the hand of the bigot.

וַתִּֽתֵּן יהוה אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ
מִשְׁפָּטִים יְשָׁרִים וְתוֹרוֹת אֱמֶת
חֻקִּים וּמִצְווֹת טוֹבִים׃

And You gave, CAUSE our God,
upright judgements and true teachings,
good precepts and commandments.

וַתִּֽתֵּן־לָֽנוּ יהוה אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ בְּאַהֲבָה‏ 
מוֹעֲדִים לְשִׂמְחָה 
חַגִּים וּזְמַנִּים לְשָׂשׂוֹן׃ 
אֶת־יוֹם טוֹב מִקְרָא קֹֽדֶשׁ הַזֶּה
אֶת־יוֹם חַג־הַמַּצּוֹת הַזֶּה
זְמַן חֵירוּתֵנוּ בְּאַהֲבָה
בְּשִׂמְחָה מִקְרָא קֹֽדֶשׁ
זֵֽכֶר לִיצִיאַת מִצְרָֽיִם׃
And You gave us, CAUSE our GOD, in love,
festivals for happiness,
pilgrimages and occasions for joy,
this good day, a sacred summoning,
this pilgrimage of Flatbread,
the occasion of our liberation, in love,
in joy a sacred summoning,
a remembrance of leaving Egypt.

וַיִּבְחַר־בּוֹ בַּיּוֹם הַזֶּה‏ מִכׇּל־הַיָּמִים
וַיִּרְצֶה־בוֹ וַיְקַדְּשֵֽׁהוּ מִכׇּל־הַזְּמַנִּים
לִהְיוֹת מְהַלְּלִים בּוֹ עַל־פִּלְאֵי מַעֲשָׂיו
לִהְיוֹת מַזְכִּירִים אוֹתוֹ בְּכׇל־שָׁנָה וְשָׁנָה׃
And THEY chose it on this day of all the days,
and desired it and sanctified it of all occasions,
To be praised on it for the wonders of THEIR works,
to be commemorated on it year after year.

לְהוֹדִֽיעַ כִּי בוֹ
הוֹצִיא יהוה אֶת־עֲבָדָיו מִמִּצְרַֽיִם
מִכּוּר הַבַּרְזֶל אוֹתָֽנוּ מִלֵּט
To make known that on it
the CAUSE took THEIR servants from Egypt,
salvaged us from the iron furnace.

לְהוֹדִֽיעַ כִּי בוֹ
קִבְּלוּ עֲלֵיהֶם עוֹל אֶת־מַלְכוּתוֹ בְרָצוֹן
לְעׇבְדוֹ בְּלֵבָב שָׁלֵם׃[2] פסוק זה שני בנוסח תימן, ראשון בנוסח רס״ג 
To make known that on it
they received the yoke of THEIR rule as desired,
to serve THEM wholeheartedly.[3] Placement per Saadia Gaon. These two verses are switched according to the nusaḥ of the Yemenites. 

לְהוֹדִֽיעַ כִּי בוֹ
עָשָׂה יהוה נְקָמוֹת בְּאֹיְבֵיהֶם
וּבוֹ־שִׁקַּע צָרֵיהֶם בַּיָּם׃[4] פסוק זה ראשון בנוסח תימן, שני בנוסח רס״ג 
To make known that on it
the CAUSE did vengeance on their enemies,
and on it sunk their stressors in the sea.[5] Find prior note. 

לְהוֹדִֽיעַ כִּי בוֹ
עָשָׂה יהוה אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ‏ נִסִּין וּגְבוּרוֹת
לְאוֹהֲבָיו
וְנִפְלָאוֹת רַבּוֹת
לִבְנֵי יְדִידָיו׃
To make known that on it
the CAUSE our God did miracles and great things
for those who love THEM,
And wonders aplenty
for the children of those THEY cherished.

כִּי בָֽנוּ־בָחַֽרְתָּ וְאוֹתָֽנוּ־קִדַּֽשְׁתָּ מִכׇּל־הָעַמִּים
וּמוֹעֲדֵי קׇדְשְׁךָ בְּשִׂמְחָה וְשָׂשׂוֹן וּבְשָׂשׂוֹן הִנְחַלְתָּנוּ
בָּרוּך אַתָּה יהוה מְקַדֵּשׁ ‏יִשְׂרָאֵל וְהַזְּמַנִּים׃
For You chose us and sanctified us over all the peoples,
and Your sacred festivals in happiness and in joy apportioned to us.
Blessed are You, CAUSE, who sanctifies Israel and the occasions.

Musical Notation

simplified Yemenite nusaḥ for T’rumo Hivlidonu

 

Notes

Notes
1 This translation uses the pluralis majestatis to refer to the Divine. This is not meant to imply that God is more than one ḥas v’shalom but rather to reflect the vastness and majesty of God while also avoiding gendered language. See Ibn Ezra’s commentary on Genesis 1:1 for a discussion of the pluralis majestatis when referring to God.
2 פסוק זה שני בנוסח תימן, ראשון בנוסח רס״ג
3 Placement per Saadia Gaon. These two verses are switched according to the nusaḥ of the Yemenites.
4 פסוק זה ראשון בנוסח תימן, שני בנוסח רס״ג
5 Find prior note.

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