JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Re: Hebrew Names #general


In a message dated 8/14/2003 9:59:38 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
shelcohe@... writes:

<< *****************************************************

Can someone please determine pronunciation of the
following Hebrew names as copied >from old grave

1. pe-nun mem-alef-yod-resh

2. resh-yod-het-vav-qop-alef-lamed

3. pe-nun-he-alef-shin-he-het nun-he

4. vav-vav (or zayin)-alef-lamed-pe >>

==Can you twll us which lines go together on one
stone? Or are they four differet stones?

==I can tell you the first line. You'll find the
letters peh-nun at the top of almost every
tombstone. They are abbreviations for "poh nikbar[ah]
" or "poh nitman[ah]." They both mean the same
"Here is buried"; the [ah] suffix, if it had
been written out, would indicate that the grave
is that of a female. The scond word on line 1 is
Me'ir, a common first name meaning roughly "he brings
light," "enlightener" or "illuminator."

==the second line seems to be a mistransliteration. My
guess is it starts with a resh followed by an
apostrophe and stands for "Reb" (mister). The
vav is probably a zayin and the word is the name
Yechezkel (a variant on Yechezki'el, i.e. Ezekiel.)
Among friends and family he would probably have
been known as Chasskel.

==The third starts, like the first, with Peh-nun,
then comes the four letters of the word "ha'ishah"
(the woman, wife, lady . . ); the last three letters
belong together and spell out the name Channah (Hannah)

==the fourth line strarts with two vavs (not zayins)
and spells the name Wolff. This is German and Yiddish
for the Hebrew names Benyamin or Ze'ev. Someone
named Wolff within the community often has a secular
name beginning with W, eg William, Walter.

==-You might have done better to post viewmate
images so that we can make sure of the actual
spellings. It's always helpful to give a rough date,
a geographical location, and the prominent details
with any query that you post..

==If you write me privately, I'll be happy to tell
you about a handy guide to the Hebrew alphabet,
prepared especially for genealogists, that helps you
clearly identify (in 12 different fonts) letters
that look alike (e.g. vav/zayin,
heh/chet, bet/kaf, nun/gimmal) and gives other
hints for deiphering Hebrew texts, inscriptions
and tombstones.

Michael Bernet, New York

MODERATOR NOTE: An InfoFile on interpreting Hebrew
headstones is available at:

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