☞   //   Prayers, Poems, and Piyyutim   //   ☼ Prayers for the weekday, Shabbat, and season   //   Everyday   //   Nighttime   //   Bedtime Shema

☞   Bedtime Shema

Night Prayer, by Marcus Heinrich Bresslau (1852)

A prayer before going to sleep at night. . . .

Evening Prayer for Children, by Rabbi Moritz Mayer (1866)

A rhyming evening prayer in English for young Jewish children. . . .

כשיוצא אדם בלילה | When a person goes out at night: an apotropaic invocation of angelic protection in the Seder Rav Amram Gaon (ca. 9th c.)

An apotropaic prayer of protection for traveling at night containing an “angels on all sides” formula. . . .

Prière du soir pour un enfant | A Child’s Evening Prayer, by Jonas Ennery & Rabbi Arnaud Aron (1852)

An evening, bedtime prayer for children. . . .

מִימִינִי מִיכָאֵל | “Mikhael is on my right,” the angelic invocation for divine protection from the Ḳriyat Shema al haMitah

The “angels on all sides” formula included with the Bedtime Shema service in many contemporary siddurim. . . .

מימיני מיכאל | “Mikhael is on my right,” an apotropaic invocation of angelic protection in the Bedtime Shema from the Maḥzor Vitry (ca. 11th c.)

An “angels on all sides” formula included with the Bedtime Shema service in the Maḥzor Vitry. . . .

גבריאל מימינהון | “Gavriel is on the right,” an apotropaic invocation of angelic protection in the amulet bowl SD12 (ca. mid-first millennium C.E.)

The text and translation of an amulet bowl discussed in “‘Gabriel is on their Right’: Angelic Protection in Jewish Magic and Babylonian Lore” by Dan Levene, Dalia Marx, and Siam Bharyo in Studia Mesopotamica (Band 1: 2014) pp.185-198. The apotropaic ward found in the amulet bowl, SD 12, contains an “angels on all sides” formula similar to that appearing in the Jewish liturgy of the bedtime shema. . . .

A Description of my Dreams, a poem by Rosa Emma Salaman (1848)

The poem, “A Description of my Dreams” by Rosa Emma Salaman, was written in September 1849 and first published in the Occident and American Jewish Advocate Vol. 6:4, Tamuz 5608, July 1848, p.175-177. . . .

Courage to Withstand the Ridicule of the Worldly, a prayer by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan (1945)

“Courage to Withstand the Ridicule of the Worldly,” by Rabbi Mordecai Menaḥem Kaplan can be found on p. 433-4 of his The Sabbath Prayer Book (New York: The Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation, 1945). I have adapted the original text of this prayer, replacing “thy” with ‘your’ and “Lord” with ‘YHVH’. –Aharon N. Varady . . .

ריבונו של עולם הריני מוחל | Prayer of Forgiveness from the Bedtime Shema, by Rabbi Yitsḥak Luria z”l (translation by Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi)

Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, z”l, included his translation of Rabbi Yitsḥak Luria’s prayer “Hareni Moḥel” (I hereby forgive) in his Siddur Tehillat Hashem Yidaber Pi (2009). To the best of my ability, I have set his translation side-by-side with a transcription of the vocalized text of the prayer. The prayer by the ARI z”l was first published in Ḥayim Vital’s Pri Ets Ḥayyim, Shaar Kriyat Shema al Hamitah, Pereq 2 (פרי עץ חיים, שער קריאת שמע שעל המיטה, פרק ב), and based on the statement of Reish Lakish in the Bavli Pesachim 66b and the practice of Mar Zutra attested in the Bavli Megillah 28a . . .

גַּמָּדֵי לָיִל | Gnomes of the Night, a poem by Ḥayyim Naḥman Bialik (ca. 1894)

The poem “Gamodei Layil” (Gnomes of the Night) by Ḥayyim Naḥman Bialik, ca. 1894. . . .

The Angels’ Vigil, a poem by Rosa Emma Salaman (1848)

The poem, “The Angels’ Vigil” by Rosa Emma Salaman, was written in April 12, 1848 and first published in the Occident and American Jewish Advocate 6:3, Sivan 5608, June 1848, p. 127-128. . . .


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