[Mendele] Mendeke Vol. 19.009

Victor Bers victor.bers at yale.edu
Mon Aug 10 22:39:49 EDT 2009

Mendele: Yiddish literature and language

Contents of Vol. 19.009
August 10, 2009

1) bezhentses (Mayer (Michael Eric) Kovnat)
2) bezhentses (Norma Brewer)
3) bezhentses (Yelena Shmulenson)
4) gogel (Martin Jacobs)

Date: July 30, 2009
Subject: bezhentses

"men hot geshosn tsvey bezhentses tsuzamen in orn-koydesh" literally means 
"They shot two people (together) in the Ark." If you have more 
information, what you say might actually make sense even though you are 
not confident about it: Perhaps it means that there were two people who 
had escaped from the roundup and were hiding in the orn-koydesh only to be 
discovered and shot.

Mayer (Michael Eric) Kovnat

Date:  July 30, 2009
Subject: bezhentses

It seems to me most likely that the text states that two refugees had 
taken refuge in the orn-koydesh and were shot.

What is unlikely about that? Hidden away, they would have hoped to escape 
being shot."Grenades" doesn't make sense. You don't shoot grenades!!!
What is the rest of the context?

Norma Brewer

Date:  July 30, 2009
Subject: bezhentses

Leyzer Gillig writes, "Perhaps it means that there were two people who had 
escaped from the roundup and were hiding in the orn-koydesh only to be 
discovered and shot. But that doesn't really make much sense."

As far as I understand this sentence - as a fluent Russian speaker - the 
"bezhentses" in question just means people who are not from the 
town/village where the action is taking place. Whoever was describing them 
knew only that they are refugees from somewhere else.

Yelena Shmulenson

Date: July 29, 2009
Subject: gogel

What is the meaning of "gogel"? It appears in a story by Sholem-Aleykhem, 
recently reprinted in the "Forverts," concerning a Jew in the old country 
who looks Jewish but is trying to look as much as possible like a non-Jew:

Emes, undzer held hot zikh noykem geven in der bord. Ongeton zikh un 
oysgeputst, take nor vi a kale, fardreyt di vontses aroyf, zikh farlozt a 
langn gogel un getrogn a shnips "asher loy shnipsu avoyseynu" ....

Martin Jacobs
End of Mendele Vol. 19.009

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