[Mendele] Mendele Vol. 22.005

Victor Bers victor.bers at yale.edu
Mon Jul 23 17:08:12 EDT 2012

Mendele: Yiddish literature and language

Contents of Vol. 22.005
July 23, 2012

[NOTE to readers: this issue repeats a number of important items that
have already appear in Mendele Personal Notices and Announcements]

1) Recordings of Yiddish Writers online (Jordan Kutzik)
2) Niborski/Vaisbrot dictionary (Mark David)
3) "Sheyn vi di levone" (Mordkhe Weisselberg)
4) "kolboynik" Oron Joffe
5) shtrikn-verter (Roberta Books)
6) tsiter, plosher (Susan Ganc)
7) yidish-frayntseyzish verterbukh (Shimke Levine)
8) Recordings of Hassidic women now available (Zelda Kahan Newman)

Date:  July 8
Subject: Recordings of Yiddish Writers online

The first batch of recordings that have been digitized as part of the
Frances Brandt Online
Yiddish Audio Library can now be listened to on Archive.org at this link

Each track in Yiddish has two copies: one with English metadata and
one with Yiddish metadata.  The recordings can be downloaded by right
clicking on the MP3 recordings on the left hand side under each
individual entry under "streaming."  The recordings consist of
lectures by and interviews with writers and poets who visited the
Jewish Public Library of Montreal between 1953 and 2005.  These are
roughly the first 60 out of around 1,100 recordings that will be
uploaded in the next two years.  Among the writers represented in the
recordings that have been uploaded so far are: Aaron Glanz-Leyeless,
Aaron Zeitlin, Abraham Sutzkever, Allen Ginsberg, Chava Rosenfarb,
Chaim Grade, H. Leivick, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Itzik Manger, Jacob
Glatstein, Kadia Molodowsky, Melech Ravitch, Rachel Korn, Rajzel
Zychlinsky, Saul Bellow, Shmerke Kaczergsinki, Yosef Kerler, Dora
Wasserman, and Leonard Cohen.

I have aimed to the best of my ability to note the names of not just
the main speakers but every speaker listed in the library records,
including speakers who gave short introductions.  I have done so under
the "keywords" which can be viewed here:
The full list of
programs that have been uploaded so far can be accessed here:


Listening to the recordings you will note that many stop in the middle
of a program and sometimes in the middle of a sentence.  When this
happens the recording will continue with a second recording listed
with the same title ending with "part 2."  The recordings were made
with reel to reel tapes that switched sides during the recording
process after a certain amount of time.  Because they switched sides a
portion of the programs were not recorded, usually between 5 and 7
seconds but sometimes as many as 30 seconds have been lost. The
digitized tracks correspond exactly with the material on one side of
the reel to reel tapes.

You can read more about the Frances Brandt Online Yiddish Audio Library here
and here http://www.yiddishbookcenter.org/blog/12/0=1/montreal-trip.
Any comments, feedback, or inquiries regarding this project can be directed to
jkutzik at bikher.org

Jordan Kutzik

Date: June 26
Subject: Niborski/Vaisbrot dictionary

In response to Yakov Rabinovich's query regarding the
Niborski/Vaisbrot Yiddish-French dictionary: it is again in print as
of 2011. It had been out of print for some time, although I don't
think it was as long as 10 years. Anyhow, no need to go to antiquarian

It's sold by its publisher Medem (Paris), online here:

and is sold in the US by the Yiddish Voice Store (USA), online here:


Possibly it's available elsewhere, but I don't know where.  Hope this helps.

Mark David

Date: June 26
Subject: "Sheyn vi di levone"

I am not sure but the fragments sure look like a parody of the well
known song Sheyn vi di levone. Here is the original

sheyn vi di levone,
likhtik vi di shtern,
fun himl a matone,
bistu mir tsugeshikt

vayl glik hob ikh gevunen,
ven ikh hob dikh gefunen,
sheyn vi toyznt zunen,
hostu mayn harts baglikt

dayne tseyndelekh
vais vi perelekh,
mit dayne sheyne oygn,
dayne heyndelekh,
dayne herelekh,
hot mikh tsugetsoygn.

Mordkhe Weisselberg

Date: June 28
Subject: "kolboynik"

In a reply regarding poyer and "know it all," Leonard fox suggests
"kolboynik" as a Yiddish equivalent for "know-it-all". Kolboynik,
however, means a jack of all trades, not a know-it-all.

In Hebrew the term is used in kibbutz jargon to describe a bowl set on
a dining table for putting food waste. I do not know whether the
Yiddish use predates the kibbutz term or vice versa.

Oron Joffe

Date: June 30
Subject: shtrikn-verter

I've been trying to locate someone with a rich Yiddish vocabulary for
knitting words.  I have some of the basics but have been unable to
locate anyone who actually learned to knit and/or follow a pattern in
Yiddish.  Any assistance would be welcome.  Thank you.

Roberta Books

Date: July 3
Subject: tsiter, plosher

>From NYTimes art section

Some of the "Yinglish" words have me stumped!
What is a "TSITSER"? What is a "PLOSHER"?

Susan Ganc

Date: June 27
Subject: yidish-frayntseyzish verterbukh

S'iz dokh nit shver tsu bakumen.  Dos verterbukh farkoyft zikh in
Medem Bibliotek / Parizer Yidish-Tsenter.
es kost dakht zikh 32 euros (+ post-hatsoes).

29, rue du Chateau d'Eau - Paris Xe.
T=E9l. : 01 47 00 14 00  [fun Amerike:  011-331-47-00-14-00]
Fax : 01 47 00 14 47

Shimke Levine

Derekh-agev iz dos a vertfuler tsugob tsu Vaynraykh, mit a sakh mer verter.

Date:  July 5
Subject: Recordings of Hassidic women now available

On the site www.talkbank.org, I have posted recordings of 16 Haassidic
women whose narratives were recorded last August at their bungalow
colony (known by them as )Adas
Yerayim in Parksville, NY.

To hear these:1) under Data click downloadable database
2) next click on downloadable audio and video
3) next click on exploration
4) finally click on Yiddish

I will be happy to discuss these with any one who's interested. I can
be reached at the above email address.

As of now one can find transcriptions for the Yiddish data (16 Hassidic women's
narratives) on the talkbank site. There are 2 sets of transcriptions:
1) a "close" phonetic
transcription (using IPA symbols) done by 3 CUNY students, all native
speakers of
Yiddish: Levi Keller, Draisy Sabel and Pinny Gold, and 2) a "broad" phonemic
transcription done by me. These can be accessed at:


Zelda Kahan Newman

End of Mendele Vol. 20.005

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