Hebrew hymnody

Although the concept of ‘hymnody’ has been applied to Hebrew sacred poetry in modern times, the specifics of this phenomenon in Jewish culture differ in many aspects from the sacred poetry of other monotheistic religions. Hebrew sacred hymns are generically known as piyyutim (liturgical or religious poems; sing. piyyut, from the Greek poesis). These are lyrical compositions intended to embellish obligatory prayers and paraliturgical or religious events, communal or private, in Jewish life. In its widest sense it encompasses the totality of the Hebrew poetry composed in various genres from the post-Biblical period until the present. This entry treats the piyyut among the Jews of the...

If you have a valid subscription to Dictionary of Hymnology, please log in to view this content. If you require a subscription, please click here.

Cite this article