אָנָּא בְּכֹחַ | Ana b’Khoaḥ, with Spanish translation by Rabbi Isaac ben Shem Tov Cavallero (1552)

Initials (Hebrew) Source (Hebrew) Translation (Ladino)

 
 
אב״ג ית״ץ

אָנָא בְּכֹחַ גְּדוּלַת יְמִינֶךָ
תַּתִּיר צְרוּרָה
Ruego con fuerça de grandeza de tu derecha,
suelta angustiada

 
 
קר״ע שט״ן

קַבֵּל רִנַּת עַמֶךָ
שַׂגְּבֵנוּ טַהֲרֵנוּ נוֹרָא
recibe exclamacion de tu pueblo
En fortece nos munda nos timido

 
 
נג״ד יכ״ש

נָא גִבּוֹר דּוֹרְשֵׁי יִחוּדֶךָ
כְּבָבַת שׁוֹמְרֵם
ruego fuerte buscantes tu unidad
como niñeta guarda

 
 
בט״ר צת״ג

בָּרְכֵם טַהֲרֵם רַחֲמֵי צִדְקָתֶךָ
תָּמִיד גּוֹמְלֵם
bendizelos lipialos piadades de tu justedad
contino les galardona fuerte santo

 
 
חק״ב טנ״ע

חָסִין קָדוֹשׁ בְּרֹב טוּבְךָ
נַהֵל עֲדָתֶךָ
Con muchedumbre de tu bien guia
la tu compaña,

 
 
יג״ל פז״ק

יָחִיד גֵּאֶה לְעַמְּךָ פְנֵה
זוֹכְרֵי קְדוּשָׁתֶךָ
unico altivo a tu pueblo atiede
recordantes tu santidad

 
 
שק״ו צי״ת

שַׁוְעָתֵנוּ קַבֵּל
וּשְׁמַע צַעֲקָתֵנוּ
יוֹדֵעַ תַּעֲלוּמוֹת׃
nostro gemido recibe
y oye nostra exclamacion
conocie entrinsecos:

Prepared by R’ Isaac ben Shem Tov Cavallero, “Orden de Oraciones segundo el uso ebrèo en lengua ebraica y vulgar espanol: traduzido por el doctor Isac hijo de Don Semtob cavallero” was the first siddur prepared for use by Sepharadim in Spanish throughout the Spanish-Portuguese diaspora.

The 42 letter divine name acrostic piyyut, Ana b’Khoaḥ, almost certainly dates from before this printing, having already apparently established itself in the section of prayers and readings between birkhot hashaḥar and pirkei d’zimra (zemirot). This is the earliest printing we have located it in (so far). If you know of an earlier example of Ana b’Khoaḥ in print or manuscript, please let us know.

For other examples of the 42 letter divine name sequence, find the litany of angel names in Sefer HaQanah and in Sefer haPeliah. Connected to the latter is another 42 letter divine name acrostic piyyut, “Elohim B’Yisrael.” There are also two other piyyutim directly concerned with the ascent of the soul of one on their deathbed; one recorded by Isaiah Horowitz in his Shnei Luḥot Habrit, and another provided in the Sefer Ma’avar Yabbok with prayers for the Ḥevre Kaddishe.

We are grateful to Aron Sterk for proofreading our transcription. He notes: “The accents are random and the ç before e and i are unnecessary…They are just typographic tics.” The transcription above expands the abbreviations (e.g. “con” for “co”) and swaps consonantal u for v and vice versa. –Aharon Varady

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