Adapted from the writings of Dayan Yitzhak Grossman February 22, 2024 In secular American society,…
On a Different Note
February 1, 2024
Excerpted and adapted from a shiur by Rav Moshe Yitzchok Weg
You shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness against your fellow.
The Aseres Hadibros has two different sets of trop (cantillation notes), ta’am elyon and ta’am tachton. The latter is the regular trop, while the former treats each dibrah as if it were a pasuk—with the dibrah ending in the sof pasuk note with which every pasuk normally concludes—whether the dibrah is several psukim long or it’s only part of a pasuk.
The Biur Halacha (494:1), citing the Mas’as Binyamin, says that ta’am elyon is used only on Shavuos, to reenact matan Torah. But at the regular Shabbos leining, and when performing the mitzvah of shnayim mikra, ta’am tachton is used (see Megillah 27b). The Or HaTorah, however, says that ta’am elyon is used for all public readings, while ta’am tachton is used in private. R’ Yaakov Emden (Luach Eresh) appears to concur, writing that ta’am tachton was intended to make the reading easier for the individual.