Which Brachos on different interesting sights do we actually say?



From the list of Brachos that Shulchan Aruch says to say when you see something, which ones do we say? Is there a rule about it? Why don’t we say some of them?



Blossoming tree in Nissan:


(As printed also in the Siddur סדר הברכות).

See details here:

Birchas Hailanos

Solar Eclipse

Shooting star/comet:




Fierce winds:


Of course, the winds must be very strong, and they cannot start at night.

Source: ibid.; see also Seder Birkas Hanehenin 13:15. See Ketzos Hashulchan 66 footnote 20.


Lightning and thunder:


Source: ibid., see also Seder Birkas Hanehenin ibid..








Source: Shulchan Aruch OC 229:1; see also Sefer Haminhagim p. 23.



Yes, but only if known that the sea or river exists from the beginning of Creation.

See more here:

What Brachah do I say when I see a River or an Ocean?


Extra tall mountains:

Yes, but only if the sights are extra wondrous, showing Hashem’s greatness, and not just any mountain

See Ketzos Hashulchan 66:14.


Birchas Hachama:

Yes (Shulchan Aruch OC 229:2).


The place where a Nes (miracle) happened to you or your parents:


(Seder Birkas Hanehenin 13:1).

However, one needs to ascertain with a Rav if the “‘miracle” is truly one that the Halacha deems proper to make a blessing on.

See also here:

I was run over by a car 7 years ago. B”H I am fine. Should I make a Seudas Hoda’ah? If so, what does that entail?


A big Talmid Chacham:

Only if it’s a Talmid Chacham Muflag who is a Gadol Hador – i.e., an exceptionally tremendous Torah sage of the generation. (Seder Birkas Hanehenin 13:8). Though there have been Rabbis in the past who recited this blessing in public, in practice it’s not said. The Rebbe also advised not to say this Brocha upon seeing the previous Rebbe.

See also here:

הרואה גדול בישראל מגבו, האם מברך עליו שחלק מחכמתו ליראיו?

What Broches will we have to say when Moshiach will come?

See also references in Piskei Teshuvos 224:4.


A gentile wise person:

This blessing is not recited in today’s day, since it is almost impossible that a wise gentile would be expert in all the seven wisdoms.

(see Mishna Berurah 224:10).


A gentile king:

Yes, but only if it’s a king who can sentence the death penalty.

(see Mishna Berurah 224:12).

If he can’t, the blessing is said without Hashem’s name.

(deduced from Mishna Berurah ibid.; see also Sha’arei Habracha p. 483 footnote 20).

See also here: 

Should someone make the Brocha שנתן מכבודו לבשר ודם on President Trump?


“Meshane Habriyos” / “Dayan Haemes”:

• when seeing an African American, American Indian, dwarf, etc., or someone whose legs are missing, is blind, or is afflicted with pimples:

As a thumb of rule, these blessing were only recited due to the impression these creatures or people had on the one who saw them. In today’s day, these creatures or people are very common and therefore no blessing is said.

(See חיי אדם כלל ס”ג סעי’ א in his Hilchos Birkas Hanehenin. The same can apply to anything that doesn’t make a big impression on us after the time – we no longer make a blessing on it.

ולהעיר שבסדר ברה״נ יג, יב, השמיט כל הדוגמאות לברכה זו, אף שהביאם בלוח ברה״נ יב, כ.


• when seeing an elephant, monkey, or ape etc.:

One does recite Meshane Habriyos when seeing them

(the Meiri in Brachos 58 writes that they have certain humanlike similarities*; additionally, regarding monkeys/apes there is also the view that they were humans that were punished after the דור הפלגה),

but only on the very first time one sees the wondrous sight. Thus, if one did not bless then, one may not bless afterwards either.

(Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayim 226:9. Sefer Birchas Hanehenin 13:13. The Rema ibid. holds that one can recite this blessing every 30 days, but in practice if one were to recite it, Hashem’s name should not be mentioned – Luach Birchas Henehenin 12:21. Mishna Berurah 226 :30. However, this has been completely omitted in Seder Birchas Henehenin ibid.).


Also note that the Nimukei Orach Chayim (225) implies that if one goes to a zoo, a couple blessings can be made, so one should not have in mind to exempt everything with one blessing.

*See also Ketzos Hashulchan 66 footnote 15 who also brings from the Talmud to make a blessing on various birds that have slight resemblances of humanlike shaped faces.

On a side note, Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Auerbach Z”L (quoted in Sha’arei Habracha p. 488) held that one can also recite a blessing on any strange looking animal.

וראה שיחת כ’ חשוון תשד”מ סעיף לז והערה 4 שם וכן שיחת ש”פ תולדות תשד”מ סעיף כג, שזהו מהטעמים להליכה לגן חיות.


“Matziv Gvul Almanah”:

See here:

Are we ever נוהג to make the Bracha of מציב גבול אלמנה? If yes – when?