Re: Equivalent for "SCHRATKA"? #general

Judith Romney Wegner

My ggf was born circa 1860 in the Kurland region of Latvia and called
SCHRATKA. What might have been his Hebrew or legal names? He had three
sons - SEMULKA, MALSKA, and HERSHKA. What might their other names have
been? They all were born circa 1885.
I've never seen "Schratka" but am wondering whether it could possibly be a
corruption or diminutive of the Yiddish name Shraga, which is actually an
ancient Aramaic word meaning light or lamp, i.e. more or less the same
meaning as the Hebrew name Uri.

As for his sons, if by their "other" names you mean their Hebrew names
(which of course were primary, being given during the circumcision
ceremony, two of the three are obvious: Shmulka is Shmuel (Samuel) and
Hershka is Hersh, meaning stag, which would be Zvi in Hebrew. Their
Yiddish names were probably their legal names. But "Malska" is not as
recognizable. If it were "Malka, " that's a female Hebrew name meaning
queen. But you said all three were sons, so it can't be Malka.

Is it possible the letter you read as "L" was really something else, for
instance an "I"? If so, Maiska might be an attempt to render Meishka --
which would be a diminutive for Meish, which is a corrupted pronouncation
of Moshe (Moses). But "Malska" stumps me completely. There exists a
Biblical Hebrew name Malachi (one of the minor prophets), but Jews don't
seem to use that name -- though. ironically, 19th-century American
Protestants (who were very addicted to the Prophets) used it quite a
bit. I eagerly await the explanation of Malska, as also of Schratka which
I likewise cannot identify with a Hebrew name.

Judith Romney Wegner

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