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Get Your Ketubah Personalized Right with 5 Important Pointers

You’re jewish and you just got engaged, so you need to think about getting a ketubah for your wedding. You’ve found one online. Check. It now needs to be personalized, and that’s where it can get complicated! Of course, there’s the basic information that, if you don’t know it already, you’re in trouble–such as the bride and groom’s names, the wedding date, and where it is taking place. But it can get mighty difficult as you go further to hebrew names, etc.

So get your ketubah personalized right with these 5 suggestions.

1) Ask your rabbi or cantor to personalize the ketubah! OK, not “actually” personalize the ketubah itself (have you SEEN his or her handwriting?) but complete the information for the ketubah artist or calligrapher. Seriously, the fastest way to have your ketubah personalized the right way is to let your officiant complete the form provided by your ketubah artist or vendor.

2) Don’t create Hebrew names. For any non-jewish parties, don’t just make up a hebrew name. Instead, ask for that person’s name to be transliterated–phonetically spelled out in hebrew letters. And if you’re jewish with a yiddush name, ask your officiant if you can use that or if he or she will require you cialis dosage to use an equivalent Hebrew name instead (e.g. Rivka instead of Rifka).

3) Include parents but not grandparents. In Hebrew, your name typically reads: “Rachel, daughter of Joshua and Sarah.” Of course, your father, Joshua, is technically “Joshua, son of Samuel and Rivka,” and your mother “Sarah, daughter of Abraham and Talia.” But just stick to your parents. Saying “Rachel, daughter of Joshua, son of Samuel and Rivka, and Sarah, daughter of Abraham and Talia” is just too much. So leave your grandparents out. Many people choose to leave their parents’ names out altogether. And typically just first (and middle, if you like) names are used – no last names.

4) Know the exact time of your ceremony. Unlike our days, Hebrew days begin and end at sundown. So when you complete your ketubah information, you will need to know whether your ceremony will actually take place before or after sunset to get the proper hebrew date.

5) Details, details for a Conservative or Orthodox ceremony? You’ll need to provide a little more information, including the bride’s “status” (whether this is the bride’s first marriage–or more technically, whether she is a virgin–or if she’s been married before and divorced or widowed, and if she’s converted), if the father of the bride and/or groom is a levite or cohain (it probably means “no” if you don’t not know), and if the ketubah artist or calligrapher should complete the ‘regal’ – the straight line in the hebrew letter ‘koof’ – in the hebrew word ‘v’kaninah’ or not. Let’s make it easy – talk to your rabbi or cantor about these items for personalizing your ketubah text.

It’s always a good idea to consult your officiant, but with these suggestions, your ketubah should be personalized the right way.

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