Shnayim mikra ve-echad targum (Hebrew: שנים מקרא ואחד תרגום, lit.'Twice Scripture and once translation'), is the Jewish practice of reading the weekly Torah portion in a prescribed manner. In addition to hearing the Torah portion read in the synagogue, a person should read it himself twice during that week, together with a translation usually by Targum Onkelos and/or Rashi's commentary.[1][2] In addition, while not required by law, there exists an Ashkenazi custom to also read the portion from the Prophets with its targum.[3]


According to the gemara:

"...אמר רב הונא בר יהודה אמר רבי אמי "לעולם ישלים אדם פרשיותיו עם הצבור שנים מקרא ואחד תרגום
Rav Huna bar Yehuda says in the name of Rabbi Ammi: "one should always complete the reading of one's weekly Torah portion with the congregation, twice from the mikra (i.e. Torah) and once from the Targum."[4]

This statement was interpreted as the ritual of Shnayim mikra ve-echad targum and is codified in the Shulchan Aruch:[5]

"Even though each person hears the Torah reading each week in the public reading, we are obligated to read each parasha twice in the hebrew and once in the Aramaic targum... Rashi's commentary shares the status of Targum, and those who fear Heaven will read the parashah with both Rashi's commentary and the targum."


Times of Recitation (starting with most ideal)[citation needed]
1. On Friday, after midday
2. On Friday, after the morning prayer
3. On the Sabbath morning, before the lunch meal
4. After the Sabbath lunch meal but before the time for the Mincha prayer
5. Up until Tuesday evening following the Sabbath of a particular weekly portion
6. Up until Shemini Atzeret of that particular year

As above, the basic obligation of Shnayim mikra ve-echad targum involves reciting the Hebrew text of the weekly portion twice and then reciting Targum Onkelos once.

Specialized books

Although one may read Shnayim mikra ve-echad targum from any text, special books have been published which print the Hebrew text twice consecutively followed by the Aramaic Targum so as to assure that the reader will recite the requisite repetitions of each verse. Examples include Chumash Haavarat HaSidra[14] and Chumash Shnayim Mikra Ve'Echad Targum.[15] Electronic versions for use in smartphones, tablet computers and e-book readers are also available.[16]

Other works designed for daily Torah study (such as Chok l'Yisrael, which includes the Torah with other study texts divided by the weeks of the year) will print the Hebrew text once, and, as with a standard Chumash, the reader must remember to repeat the Hebrew text before going on to the Targum. Some of these works divide the weekly portion by day and, generally correspondingly, by Aliyah (Sunday: first Aliyah, Monday: Second Aliyah...). Others divide the weekly portion differently: for example Chok L'Yisrael prescribes a set number of verses for each day of the week, with the remainder of the portion to be read on Friday.

See also

For other study cycles, see Torah study#Study cycles



  1. ^ Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayim 285:1-6
  2. ^ a b c d Peninei Halakha, Different Customs Relating to Shnayim Mikra Ve-eĥad Targum
  3. ^ Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayim 285:7
  4. ^ Berakhot 8a
  5. ^ Orach Chaim 285:1
  6. ^ e.g. the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 72:11
  7. ^ Mishnah Berurah 285:2; Aruch Hashulchan 285:3,13 Archived 2013-04-15 at
  8. ^ including the Rosh (Berachot 1:8) and the Tur (O.C. 285)
  9. ^ including the Shulchan Aruch (Orach Chayim 285:2)
  10. ^ 285:5
  11. ^ Tosafot (Berachot 8a, “Shnayim”) acknowledge the opinion that any translation of the Torah into one’s own language is acceptable, but they do not conclude agreeing with this opinion, since Targum Onkelos is a unique combination of translation and commentary.
  12. ^ " least one posek ruled that by reciting Mendelssohn’s translation of the Torah (for those not adept at reading Rashi’s commentary on the Torah), one has fulfilled the rabbinic obligation of שנים מקרא ואחד תרגום, no small matter."
  13. ^ Hayyim ben Joseph Vital, Peri Etz Chaim, Sha'ar Hanhagat Limmud. This may not always have been the case. Some fragmentary manuscripts from Israel contain passages from the Targum with cantillation marks: Paul Kahle, Masoreten des Westens. This may have been for public synagogue reading rather than private study.
  14. ^ "חומש העברת הסידרא: Bereshit, Shemot". 2009.
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 15 November 2012. Retrieved 13 January 2022.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  16. ^ Best Android apps for: Shnayim mikra

Further reading