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Length of Shmoneh Esrei

Why is the Shemonei Esrei very long, with so many  blessings to say? Can’t the rabbis make it more concise?


The Gemara writes that the Shemoneh Esrei prayer was compiled over a number of years by the Elders of the Great Assembly, a group that included a number of prophets. Clearly, then, its words are carefully chosen. The Gemara in Megillah also explains that the prayer constitutes a progression, and the Gemara in Berachos clarifies that the eighteen blessings correspond to various instances of eighteen in Scripture. There are certainly many secrets in the words, and we cannot know the effects our prayers have.

However, there is a “shortened version” of the Shemoneh Esrei prayer, which was compiled for people who have to leave on a journey, and lack the time to say the full version.

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