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Sheva Brachot (Hebrew: שבע ברכות‎) literally "the seven blessings" also known as birkot Nesuim (Hebrew: ברכות נישואים‎), "the wedding blessings" in Halakha (Jewish religious law) are blessings that are recited for the bride and the groom in a Jewish Wedding ceremony under the chupah over a second cup of wine (called the Cup of Blessing).

These blessing are also recited as part of the festive meals that continue for a week after the wedding. They are said over a cup of wine after the Birkat Hamazon (Grace After Meals). It is a common custom for these blessing to be divided among honored guests. If multiple people say the blessings, the cup is passed to the person saying each blessing.

Contents

Customs

In Orthodox and Conservative Judaism, these blessings are said only if a minyan is present. On weekdays their recitation also requires the presence of at least one person who was not present for any previous Sheva Brachot of the couple. On Shabbat there is no need for a new guest, since the Shabbat itself is considered a new guest. New guests are referred to as Panim Hadashot - new faces.

If both the bride and the groom were previously married the period of celebration is abridged to three days.

Under the chuppah the blessing over wine comes first; at the meal table it comes last. We are not certain who composed the benedictions; the text is recorded in the Talmud (K'tubot 7b/8a) but its origin is probably several centuries earlier. Though the Sheva Brachot are a stylistically harmonious whole, they are a mosaic of skillfully interwoven Biblical words, phrases and ideas.

From the Jewish Encyclopedia:

" At the time of the Geonim (as occasionally to-day in the East) these seven blessings were uttered twice—once in the house of a relative of the bride, whither the latter had been taken from her father's house on the evening before the day of the wedding, and once in the house of the groom."

The blessings

ברוך אתה ה' אלהינו מלך העולם, בורא פרי הגפן.

Transliteration: Barukh ata Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha‑olam, bo're p'ri hagafen.
Translation: "Blessed are You, LORD, our God, King of the universe, who creates the fruit of the vine."

ברוך אתה ה' אלהינו מלך העולם, שהכל ברא לכבודו.

Transliteration: Barukh ata Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha‑olam shehakol bara lichvodo.
Translation: "Blessed are You, LORD, our God, King of the universe, who created everything for his Glory.

The phrase is connected to Talmudic incidents in which the Sages said this phrase after failing in attempts to replace the people who baked the Showbread and the people who compounded the incense in the days of the Temple of Jerusalem. It reflects both grace to accept what one cannot change and recognition that everyone has unique and irreplaceable talents as keys to a harmonious marriage.

ברוך אתה ה' אלהינו מלך העולם, יוצר האדם.

Transliteration: Barukh ata Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha‑olam, yotzer haa’dam.
Translation: "Blessed are You, LORD, our God, King of the universe, who creates man.

ברוך אתה ה' אלהינו מלך העולם, אשר יצר את האדם בצלמו, בצלם דמות תבניתו, והתקין לו ממנו בניין עדי עד. ברוך אתה ה', יוצר האדם.

Transliteration: Barukh ata Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha‑olam, asher yatzar et ha-adam b’tzalmo, b’tzelem d’mut tavnito, v’hitkin lo mimenu binyan adei ad. Baruch atah Adonai, yotzeir ha-adam.
Translation: Blessed are You, LORD, our God, King of the universe, who creates man in your image, fashioning perpetuated life. Blessed are You, LORD, creator of man.

שוש תשיש ותגל עקרה, בקיבוץ בניה לתוכה בשמחה. ברוך אתה ה', משמח ציון בבניה.

Transliteration: Sos tasis v’tageil ha-akara b’kibutz baneha l’tocha b’simcha. Baruch atah Adonai, m’sameach Tzion b’vaneha.
Translation: May Zion rejoice as her children are restored to her in joy. Blessed are You, LORD, who causes Zion to rejoice her children’s return.

שמח תשמח רעים האהובים, כשמחך יצירך בגן עדן מקדם. ברוך אתה ה', משמח חתן וכלה.

Transliteration: Sameiach Tesameach reiim ha-ahuvim k’sameichachca y’tzircha b’gan eden mikedem. Baruch atah Adonai, m’sameiach chatan v’chalah.
Translation: Grant perfect joy to these loving companions, as you did your creations in the Garden of Eden. Blessed are You, LORD, who grants the joy of groom and bride.

ברוך אתה ה' אלהינו מלך העולם, אשר ברא ששון ושמחה, חתן וכלה, גילה רינה, דיצה וחדווה, אהבה ואחווה, ושלום ורעות, מהרה ה' אלקינו ישמע בערי יהודה ובחוצות ירושלים, קול ששון וקול שמחה, קול חתן וקול כלה, קול מצהלות חתנים מחופתם, ונערים ממשתה נגינתם. ברוך אתה ה', משמח חתן עם הכלה.

Transliteration: Baruch atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha-olam, asher bara sason v’simcha chatan v’kallah, gilah rinah ditzah v’chedvah, ahavah v’achavah v’shalom v’reut. M’hera Adonai Eloheinu yishammah b’arei Yhudah uv-chutzot Y’rushalayim kol sason v’kol simcha, kol chatan v’kol kalah, kol meitzhalot chatanim meichupatam u-narim mimishte n’ginata. Baruch atah Adonai, m’sameiach chatan im hakalah.
Translation: Blessed are You, LORD, our God, King of the universe, who created joy and gladness, groom and bride, mirth, song, delight and rejoicing, love and harmony and peace and companionship. LORD our God, may there ever be heard in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem voices of joy and gladness, voices of groom and bride, the jubilant voices of those joined in marriage under the bridal canopy, the voices of young people feasting and singing. Blessed are You, LORD, who causes the groom to rejoice with his bride.

References

See also

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