Re: Mindl: Is it Jewish or Hebrew? #general

Judith Romney Wegner

My wife's aunt >from Romania was called Minnie and then Mina when she
came to the U.S. Her Yiddish name was Mindl. What would her Hebrew
name have been? Or would that also be Mindl?

Gene [Starn]
My (Anglo-Jewish) mother ('aleha ha-shalom) was named Minnie; my father
(Polish-born) often called her Mindl as an affectionate nickname. My
sister claims Mum once said that her Hebrew name was Malka. But on her
ketubbah it says Miriam! (Maybe she was actually "Miriam Malka.") This
neatly illustrates the problem of our female ancestors' names -- there was
often no Hebrew name at all, because there was no traditional ritual
equivalent to the circumcision ceremony, in which the naming of the
child(usually with a Hebrew rather than Yiddish namej) is part of the
ceremonial liturgy.

If your wife's aunt had a Hebrew name at all, the best bets are probably
Miriam and Malka. But many Jewish girls in Yiddish-speaking communities
were given only the Yiddish name -- so she may have been just plain Mindl
all along.

Judith Romney Wegner

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