Oxford Jewish Thought

Lectures, essays, questions & articles

by Rabbi Eli Brackman

The Yom Kippur Piyyut of unknown origin: "ki anu ame-cha" (For we are Your nation) through Oxford Hebrew manuscript mahzorim'

MS. Marshall Or. 7 (1334).pngOne of the most well-known piyyutim, of unknown origin, in the High Holidays machzor (prayer book), is known as: ‘ki anu amecha’ (for we are your people). It is recited five times on Yom Kippur, during each of the five prayers: evening service, morning service, mussaf, mincha and ne’ilah, and appears each time in the machzor just before the confession. The piyyut is traditionally sung as a joyous song and in unison, as opposed to being led by the chazzan, as with other piyyutim. In the ‘Companion to the Machzor for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, by Raymond Apple, published by the United Synagogue in 1964, it describes this piyyut as follows: ‘Based on a number of Biblical expressions, ‘Ki anu amecha’Read More »

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