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Sep 29, 2013

1200 year old Shabbos siddur discovered

A private collector just introduced a 1200 year old siddur as part of his collection. The siddur is several hundred years older than the oldest Torah scrolls in existence, but not quite as old as the Dead Sea Scrolls. The collectors did not reveal where the siddur had been discovered.
(source: The Forward)

from the Green Collection

Interestingly, the siddur is far smaller and shorter than any siddur we have today. That is just looking at the size of it and how many prayers it can possibly contain.

The siddur is a compilation of Shabbos prayers, along with 100 brachos said daily. The article says that this is the earliest source for such the idea of saying 100 brachos daily. Scholars don't seem to understand how the two go together, as the 100 daily benedictions would be a daily read - I would suggest it was bundled with the Shabbos services because during the Shabbos services we organically say less brachos than on the average weekday. Printing a list of 100 blessings in a Shabbos siddur would make it easier for the person holding the suddur to say enough appropriate blessings to fill his quota of 100.

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  1. "The article says that this is the earliest source for such the idea of saying 100 brachos daily."

    No, the article just quotes Jerry Pattengale as saying that "this is probably the earliest account of the 100 Benedictions". The source for the idea of saying 100 brachos daily is a statement by R. Meir in a beraita cited in TB Menahot 43b. R. Meir preceded this manuscript by about 700 years.

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