Shalom Aleikhem

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SHALOM ALEIKHEM

SHALOM ALEIKHEM (Heb. שָׁלוֹם עֲלֵיכֶם; "peace be upon you").

(1) A form of greeting common among Jews. The reply to the greeting is aleikhem shalom (Heb. עֶלֵיכֶם שָׁלוֹם; lit. "upon you be peace"). The greeting is mentioned, in the singular form in the Talmud: "A teacher should be greeted with 'Peace to thee, my master,' and should be answered (if he makes the first greeting) with, 'Peace be with thee, my master and teacher'" (Ber. 27b, and Rashi ad loc.; see also Sh. Ar., yd 242: 16). In modern Hebrew, the greeting is often shortened to shalom (see Form of *Greetings).

(2) Opening words of hymn welcoming Sabbath angels to the home. It is recited by the head of the family upon returning from the synagogue on the Sabbath eve. The hymn, which is of late composition, is known only in the Ashkenazi rite. It is based on the talmudic statement (Shab. 119b) that on the Sabbath eve two ministering angels accompany every Jew from the synagogue to his home.

bibliography:

Davidson, Oẓar, 3 (1930), 465 no. 1268.