bencher

Alternative Spellings

bentsher, bentscher, bensher, benscher

Definitions

  • prayer booklet or card with the text of the blessings after meals, and often times including other meal-time blessings and songs

Example Sentences

  • At the conclusion of the Bar Mitzvah meal, they handed out bentchers for use in reciting Birkas HaMazon.
  • "'Jewish weddings are the worst thing to ever happen to bentshers!' according to Kalman. 'Because bentshers are now mass-produced, there’s a push to make them smaller, and a push to make them cheaper.'" (https://www.tabletmag.com/sections/news/articles/duo-benches-todays-bentsher)
  • "It’s always fun to look at the benchers from various simchas and think back about that wedding and the couple who tied the knot that day." (https://letsbench.com/wedding-benchers-good-choice/)
  • "The NCSY Bencher is immensely popular for use in homes, synagogues, schools, youth groups and camps, as well as for weddings, bar and bas mitzvahs, and other simchos." (https://www.judaica.com/the-ncsy-bencher-19227.html)
  • "As someone with a dining room drawer full of well-used egalitarian benchers, some decades old, some from my wedding 18 years ago, I initially wondered what the innovation of Seder Oneg Shabbos was, besides its incredibly beautiful typesetting and illustrations." (https://www.myjewishlearning.com/the-torch/an-orthodox-friendly-egalitarian-bencher-something-old-something-very-new/)

Languages of Origin

Yiddish

Etymology

בענטשער bentsher 'blesser,' that is, a thing used for blessing.

Who Uses This

Religious: Jews who are engaged in religious observance and have some Jewish education
Orthodox: Jews who identify as Orthodox and observe halacha (Jewish law)
Ashkenazim: Jews with Ashkenazi heritage
Organizations: People involved in a professional or volunteer capacity with Jewish nonprofit organizations

Regions

North America

Dictionaries

The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001)

Notes

See also bench and Birkat Hamazon

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