Go Down Moses and Dayenu – Passover Songs

Go Down Moses and Dayenu are well-known Passover Songs.

Go Down Moses has its origins in an African American spiritual from the time of slavery. What’s interesting is that the slaves chose the story of Passover to express their situation. Now Jewish people sing it for Passover.

Here’s a Passover version of Go Down Moses…

Dayenu means “it would have been enough”. Below is a video of this song in Hebrew. The basic lyrics of Dayenu are:

Hebrew Pronunciation

Ilu hotzianu mimitzrayim,
v’lo asah vahem sh’fatim,
Dayeinu!

English Translation

If He had brought us out from Egypt,
and had not carried out judgments against them
Dayenu, it would have been enough!

Matt wrote to me:

There’s something like 15 verses to the song, and at every Seder I’ve ever been to, it inevitably devolves into utter confusion as every guest tries to sing the verses in a different order :-)

The verses he sings in the video are:

Ilu hotzianu mi-mitzrayim (if He had taken us out of Israel…)
Ilu natan lanu et ha-shabat (if He had given us the Sabbath…)
Ilu natan lanu eta ha-torah (if He had given us the Torah…)

My favorite Passover songs are “Avadim Hayinu” (We were slaves), “Eliahu ha-Navi” (Eliahu the prophet), and “Echad Mi Yodea” (Who knows one?)

Gosh, the things you find on YouTube. That “Eliahu ha-Navi” is hilarious. Here’s a more traditional version :-)

Thanks Matt!

Happy Passover!

Mama Lisa

This article was posted on Monday, March 29th, 2010 at 10:22 am and is filed under Countries & Cultures, Dayenu, Go Down Moses, Hebrew, Holiday Songs, Holidays Around the World, Israel, Languages, Mama Lisa, Passover, Passover Songs, Seder, USA, YouTube. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Go Down Moses and Dayenu – Passover Songs”

  1. thanks Says:

    just watched this with my baby – found your site while looking for nursery rhymes. now she’s gotten to hear dayenu before the seder too!

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