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Jews come from all different places and backgrounds, most falling between two main denominations; Ashkenaz, from Eastern Europe, and Sephardic, from Spain and Portugal. These two groups have many distinct religious customary differences, one of which is the content of their traditional ketubah texts as well as the way they are filled out.
Isfahan, Persia, 1818 Ketubah
This has caused some confusion and questions regarding Sephardic Ketubah Texts. We break down the 5 main differences between Sephardic Ketubah texts and Ashkenaz ketubah texts.
We spoke with Ketubah.com‘s Head of Printing and Production, Nava Hoffman, to learn the top 5 Things you Need to Know:
Isfahan (Persia), 1879 Ketubah
Typically to a minimum of two generations (parents and grandparents) but they could choose to list prior generations as well, especially if there is/was an influential Rabbi or Jewish leader in the family. Traditionally, only men are listed for both the groom’s and bride’s sides.
Such as Sephardi Tahor (“pure Sephardic”), Hamaskil ve’Chashuv (influential and important), Rodef Shalom (one who seeks and makes peace), etc.
“These two groups have many distinct religious customary differences, one of which is the content of their traditional ketubah texts as well as the way they are filled out.”
Hamsa with Ancient Mosaic Pattern Gold Leaf
It can also be listed in any currency, typically the local currency of where the wedding is taking place or where the couple will be living. In Ashkenaz ketubahs, there is a set accepted standard amount and currency for the bride’s value.
An example of the unpersonalized Sephardic Ketubah Text
The end of the ketubah is traditionally not ever sung or read aloud under the chuppah since this section of the document discusses what would happen if the groom does not honour the parameters of the wedding agreement (i.e. marrying a second wife, etc…) Rather, this is said in an undertone as it is considered to be an “ayin hara” (bad omen) for it to be read or sung out loud.
All of Ketubah.com’s ketubah designs that have one singular space for languages (ketubahs like “Four Seasons Ketubah” and not ketubahs such as “Infinity of Love Ketubah“) are available with Sephardic Text. This text option can be found by clicking “Ketubah Text” at the navigation at top of each page on the website.
Share your Sephardi Ketubahs with us on Instagram @ketubahdotcom!