LONDON — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson attempted, and failed, to blow a shofar while on a visit to northern England.
During a visit on Sept. 13 to meet voters in Doncaster, Yorkshire, the newly minted prime minister was approached by a woman who invited him to “blow the holy shofar.” She explained that the instrument, which she said is “like a trumpet,” is from Israel.
Johnson expressed concern about whether he is allowed to blow the holy instrument, used by Jews on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur and during the month leading up to the high holy days, and the woman responded that “G-d has authorized you.”
The exchange was posted in a video online by Britain’s Channel 5 News.
Johnson was not able to get a sound out of the instrument, but managed to utter the age-old pun “Shofar so good,” before handing it back to the woman.
Johnson previously tried to blow the shofar in 2011, when the mayor of London, during a ground-breaking ceremony for London’s new Jewish Community Center building in Finchley, North London, which took place the day before Yom Kippur. He managed to get a sound out of it that time, after a short tutorial by then-chief rabbi Jonathan Sacks.