Oral preaching and written sermons in the middle ages

Shaul Regev

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Our knowledge of the nature of medieval Jewish public sermons is limited and our conclusions mostly inferential. Nonetheless, based upon the sermon literature and through analysis of various introductions and manuals for preachers of the time, we can fairly accurately reconstruct the oral sermon. We know where and when sermons were delivered, their content, the characteristics of the various preachers, the expectations of the listeners and the efforts the preachers made to make their sermons appealing to a diverse audience. Inevitably, over the course of centuries, both the form and the content of sermons changed. This was in response to the shifting needs and desires of audiences and reflects the changes in orientation of the various periods, such as the move from philosophically based sermons to those with Kabbalistic or Halakhic content.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-99
Number of pages15
JournalEuropean Journal of Jewish Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - 21 Apr 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:


  • criticism of preachers
  • homiletic literature
  • language
  • oral preaching
  • preachers
  • presentation techniques
  • times for speaking
  • written sermons


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