Re: First Came "Retroactive Samification" and Now Comes... #general


Jules Levin
 

At 10:31 AM 7/16/2012, Meron LAVIE wrote:
...I may have just discovered...
... Proactive Samification!

By that, I mean that perhaps my great-grandfather already took the name
Samuel in advance of his arrival in the US, maybe because he came through
Scotland and it was just easier giving "Samuel" to the Scottish clerk who
registered him? Can you even imagine hearing "Schleime Meyer" in a heavy
brogue?

I would be interested in hearing if there are any similar stories of
people who experienced Proactive Samification, and perhaps even start a
support group for their families.
For better or worse, there is a false assumption going on here, namely,
that in the old country the Jews lived in a splendid authentic original
Yiddish subculture, and only became assimilated in the New World.
Assimilation was going on rapidly in Russia and all its territories, and
many Jews were very familiar with the Russian and German equivalents of their
Hebrew names, and were not reluctant to use them.

My gf was Yehudah, but was already familiar with Julius and may have already
been using it. The Russian Samuil was known by Jews, and they didn't have
to go to Scotland to learn it. A Scottish clerk hearing "Samuil" would have
written "Samuel" without thinking he was changing the name. Moshe was
already Mauritz in fancy German-speaking households, and only then became
Morris in America. I'll need to see better evidence for Samification
before I believe in it.

Jules Levin
Los Angeles

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