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Seder table with Haggadah editions

Seder ( Hebrew סדר, "Order") or Seder evening is a ceremonial meal at the beginning of the Jewish festival of Passover .


The seder evening takes place on the 14th of Nisan and is the eve and prelude to Passover. He is remembered in the family (or community) circle of the exodus from Egypt . This happens according to an external and internal (spiritual) order - hence the name "Seder". Texts about the captivity of the Israelites in Egypt and their flight are both read and sung. The texts are of biblical and rabbinical origin. Each participant has a Haggadah in front of them, a book in which these texts and the other instructions for the course of the Seder are found. Songs with Aramaic text are sung together. During the evening , the participants eat from the matzo , bitter cabbage (horseradish, lettuce or both) and other foods. Wine is drunk at four fixed times, according to the four steps of redemption from the 2nd book of Moses . A joint dinner is part of the process; hiding a piece of matzo, the afikoman , is fun for younger children on seder evening. The youngest participant traditionally asks the leader of the Seder about the meaning of various aspects of the ritual by asking the four questions with Ma Nishtana , which are then explained. Chad gadja is sung at the end of each seder .

The symbolic dishes

The Seder plate starting clockwise at the top: Maror, Seroa, Charosset , Chaseret, Karpas, Beitzah
Traditional Seder plate, Germany, 19th century

On the Seder evening, the table is set with dishes of symbolic significance.

  • Unleavened bread ( matzo ) as a symbol of the haste in which the Jews fled Egypt so that they could not even leaven the bread dough and it could not rise that way.
  • Salt water as a symbol of weeping over the destruction of the Jerusalem temple , where the Passover lamb was sacrificed (the Sephardim use vinegar instead , the Yemeni Jews leave it out entirely).
  • A Seder plate (Ka'ara) with the following dishes on it. There are variations in the arrangement of the dishes, here is a common arrangement:
    • Maror - a bitter herb, mostly horseradish , also romaine lettuce , as a sign of the bitterness of bondage in Egypt.
    • Seroa - a seared leg of lamb with little meat, reminiscent of the biblical regulation of the sacrifice of a Passover lamb in the Jerusalem temple. Since the temple is no longer standing, roast lamb is no longer eaten on Passover these days; the seroa remains on the plate during the seder. This is what the Ashkenazim tradition says . Some Sephardim, however, continue the tradition of the Passover lamb by preparing a leg of lamb.
    • Charosset - a mixture of apple or fig pieces and dates, nuts or almonds, kneaded together with a little red wine,sprinkledwith cinnamon or ginger , as a symbol for the clay from which the Israelites had to make bricks in the times of bondage.
    • Chaseret - a second bitter herb, can be made from the same or a different type of vegetable than maror, it is eaten with the charosset.
    • Karpas - celery (Eppich), radishes, parsley or potatoes as the fruit of the earth, symbolize the "grueling work" in Egypt. This earth fruit is immersed in the salt water during the meal and eaten.
    • Beitzah - a boiled egg, a symbol of the frailty of human destinies, but also of human fertility and finally a symbol of mourning for the destroyed temple in Jerusalem.
  • a cup of wine intended for the prophet Elijah .

Course of a seder evening

The course of the seder evening is not uniformly regulated and the details are varied. Here is a possible process in 14 steps:

  1. Kadesh קדש(Recitation of Kiddush and the first cup of wine)
  2. Urchatz ורחץ (Washing hands)
  3. Karpas כרפס (Starter, the karpas is immersed in salt water and eaten)
  4. Jachatz יחץ(Breaking the matzo) and hiding the Afikoman
  5. Magid מגיד (Retelling of the Exodus from Egypt; the children ask: "Why is this evening different from everyone else?", The four questions: "Why the immersion? Why only matzo? Why the bitter herbs? Why do we relax and eat on the left Side like the kings? "; Eating the egg; the second cup of wine)
  6. Rochtzo רחצה(Washing hands) and speaking the bracha
  7. Mozie מוציא, Mazza מצה (Consumption of the matzo)
  8. Maror מרור (bitter herbs are eaten with charosset)
  9. Korech כורך (the matzo is eaten with Maror and Charosset)
  10. Schulchan Orech שולחן עורך (festive meal)
  11. Zafun צפון (the Afikoman is brought back from hiding and eaten by the children)
  12. Bairach ברך (The third cup of wine as thanks after the meal, open the front door and recite the passage that Elias invites to appear in anticipation of the impending salvation and the cup of Elias)
  13. Hallel הלל( Praise and the fourth cup of wine)
  14. Nirza נירצה (Adoption)

See also


  • A. F – l .: In the peace of the Sabbath light - From the four walls of Jewish family life . In: The Gazebo . Issue 20, 1867, pp. 313-319 ( full text [ Wikisource ]).

Web links

Commons : Seder  - collection of images, videos and audio files
  • Preparing for the Seder. In: January 30, 2007.;
  • Jewish history and culture. Project of the Lessing-Gymnasium from Döbeln. ( [1] accessed on November 23, 2019)

Individual evidence

  1. Seder. (No longer available online.) In: Archived from the original on January 16, 2013 ; accessed on April 3, 2019 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  2. 12 EU
  3. The Seder Bowl - What belongs on it. In: January 30, 2007, accessed April 3, 2019 .
  4. A guide in 14 steps to a "soulful seder". In: January 30, 2007, accessed April 3, 2019 .