- Anshei Ma’amad

Anshei Ma’amad

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Anshei Ma’amad

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Esther Livingstone

Anshei Ma’amad/ מעמד אנשׁי -Men of Standing

   (HKHVB =  Hilchos Klei HaMikdash V’haovdim Bo)


  1. Who were the Anshei Ma’amad/ מעמד אנשׁי and what was their role?

  2. Why was it necessary to have them?

  3. How many groups of ma’amadot were there?

  4. When and with whom would they come to the Beis HaMikdash?

  5. Did those who lived very far from Yerushalayim also come to the Beis HaMikdash?

  6. All those in the ma’amad would fast during their allocated week- on which days did they fast?

  7. Excluding ma’ariv, how many times a day did they daven during their allocated week?

  8. How often during the week of their ma’amad did they read from the Torah?

  9. What did they read from the Torah each day?

  10. How many times daily were the anshei ma’amad blessed by the kohanim?

  11. On any day there was a korban mussaf, the ma’amad only met together twice for davening- shacharis and neila.  Why was this the case?

  12. What two things was it forbidden for men of the ma’amad to do during their allocated week, until Thursday; and why was this the case?

  13. Why was this significant and important group called a ma’amad- which means “standing”?



  1. They were upright, G-d fearing Jews who served as the representatives of the entire Jewish people in the Beis HaMikdash.  They would stand and observe the offerings of the korbanos/sacrifices (HKHVB 6:1) “Their intent and goal was involvement in Divine service and tefilla. They were not occupied with their own concerns, but their minds and their thoughts were on the korbanos.” (Rambam Peirush HaMishna Ta’anit 4:2)

  2.  It was necessary to have them because a person had to stand near his korban in the Beis HaMikdash at the time it was sacrificed. The communal offerings were the korbanos of the entire Jewish people, and they obviously couldn’t all be present.  Thus, the nevi’im ordained that agents should be selected to represent the people. (Ta’anit 27a)  (HKHVB- 6:1)

  3. There were twenty-four groups, and each one had a supervisor called the Rosh Hama’amad. (HKHVB- 6:1)

  4. They would come on a Friday, with the new mishmar of  kohanim and levi’im who also came then, and would serve for a week. (HKHVB 6:2)

  5. No, they wouldn’t come.   Instead, they would gather in shuls in their cities during their specified week, and would  daven together and read from the Torah there.  (HKHVB- 6:2)

  6. They fasted on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of their week, though they were able to eat in the evenings. (HKHVB -6:3)  This was part of their tefilla and techina/supplication to Hashem.

  7. On most days, they davened four times daily- shacharis, an additional tefilla between shacharis and mincha, mincha and  neila.  The  Rambam and Radbaz say that during the additional tefilla they davened that the korbanos should be accepted and that Jews in situations of danger should be saved. The neila tefilla was to increase pleading, due to their fasting. (HKHVB- 6:4)

  8. They read from the Torah twice daily-in shacharis and in the extra tefilla afterwards- with 3 aliyos given out each time. (HKHVB- 6:4)

  9. They read a small part each day from ma’ase bereishis/ the narrative of creation, reading the same part both times. (HKHVB  6:6-7)  The Rambam says they read this portion because of the statement “Were it not for the sacrifices, heaven and earth would not be maintained.” (Ta’anit 27b)

  10. They were blessed by the kohanim three times daily- during shacharis, in the additional tefilla, and at neila. (HKHVB- 6:4)

  11. Because the members of the ma’amad were very busy with the korban mussaf. (HKHVB- 6:8)

  12.  They were forbidden to cut their hair and to launder their clothes, but on Thursday or Friday they could do so in honour of Shabbos.  This was enacted to insure that they did not enter their ma’amad in an unkempt state! (HKHVB- 6:11)

  13. It was called a ma’amad because of the gathering together of this group for tefilla four times daily - “amidatan sham ltfilla, l’tchina  ul’vakasha, v’likrot  ba’Torah“  is called a ma’amad.  (HKHVB-  6:5)



Sefer Avodah-Rambam-With commentary-Rabbi Eliyahu Touger –Moznaim Pub Corp.-2007

                       Sefer Avodah- Rambam- With commentary- Editor- Yockai Makbili-  Pub- Mishne Torah Project and Machon HaMikdash-2012.

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