Date   

Name of Soldiers in the Czar's Army #general

Harry E Stein <fromme@...>
 

I recently asked the Russian Embassy the same question. I was told to
write to the following address for military personnel records for
soldiers is the Czar's army. It does not make much sense because
military records are normally held in military archives. Good luck!

Red Cross of Russia
18/7 Kuzentskiy Most
10301, Moscow
Russia

Hope to see you in October during parents weekend at GU.

Harry Stein


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Name of Soldiers in the Czar's Army #general

Harry E Stein <fromme@...>
 

I recently asked the Russian Embassy the same question. I was told to
write to the following address for military personnel records for
soldiers is the Czar's army. It does not make much sense because
military records are normally held in military archives. Good luck!

Red Cross of Russia
18/7 Kuzentskiy Most
10301, Moscow
Russia

Hope to see you in October during parents weekend at GU.

Harry Stein


Salt Lake City Trip in October #general

GARY MOKOTOFF <VHWC10A@...>
 

For the sixth consecutive year, veteran Jewish genealogists
Gary Mokotoff and Eileen Polakoff will be offering a research
trip to the LDS (Mormon) Family History Library in Salt Lake City.
This year it is >from October 22-29, 1998. The trip is limited to only 40
participants; 23 have signed up to date.
The program offers genealogists the opportunity to spend an
entire week of research at the Library under the guidance and
assistance of professional genealogists who have made more than
a two dozen trips to Salt Lake City. It includes a specially
arranged three-hour class on day of arrival introducing the
participants to the facilities and resources of the Family
History Library; a mid-week informal group discussion of progress
and problem-solving and access to trip leaders >from 9:00 a.m. to
5:00 p.m. at the Library for on-site assistance and personal
consultations. For those new to genealogy, a beginners workshop
on the first morning of the trip introduces them to the wonderful
world of Hamburg immigration lists, U.S. passenger arrival lists,
naturalization records and census records.
Social events include a mid-week group dinner for camaraderie and
discussion of successes (and failures); special seating at the Sunday
morning broadcast of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and an optional Sunday
tour of Salt Lake City and environs.
For additional information, write to SLC Genealogy Trip, 155
N. Washington Avenue, Bergenfield, NJ 07621, call 201-387-3818 or
e-mail vhwc10a@prodigy.com.


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Salt Lake City Trip in October #general

GARY MOKOTOFF <VHWC10A@...>
 

For the sixth consecutive year, veteran Jewish genealogists
Gary Mokotoff and Eileen Polakoff will be offering a research
trip to the LDS (Mormon) Family History Library in Salt Lake City.
This year it is >from October 22-29, 1998. The trip is limited to only 40
participants; 23 have signed up to date.
The program offers genealogists the opportunity to spend an
entire week of research at the Library under the guidance and
assistance of professional genealogists who have made more than
a two dozen trips to Salt Lake City. It includes a specially
arranged three-hour class on day of arrival introducing the
participants to the facilities and resources of the Family
History Library; a mid-week informal group discussion of progress
and problem-solving and access to trip leaders >from 9:00 a.m. to
5:00 p.m. at the Library for on-site assistance and personal
consultations. For those new to genealogy, a beginners workshop
on the first morning of the trip introduces them to the wonderful
world of Hamburg immigration lists, U.S. passenger arrival lists,
naturalization records and census records.
Social events include a mid-week group dinner for camaraderie and
discussion of successes (and failures); special seating at the Sunday
morning broadcast of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and an optional Sunday
tour of Salt Lake City and environs.
For additional information, write to SLC Genealogy Trip, 155
N. Washington Avenue, Bergenfield, NJ 07621, call 201-387-3818 or
e-mail vhwc10a@prodigy.com.


Ashkenaz/Sepharadi #general

haim harutz <yairharu@...>
 

Subject: Ashkenazi,Sephardi
From: sim-fie@webtv.net (mildred lester)
Date: Thu, 6 Aug 1998 18:12:42 -0400 (EDT)
X-Message-Number: 15
Please explain the difference and what they mean?
Thank You, Mildred Lester
I presume that there must be an explanation somewhere in the infofiles or
the archives for these words, but I'll throw in my ha'pence worth, with
your kind permission.

The words are derived >from the medieval Hebrew names for "Gemany" and
"Spain". These words had their origins in the Bible.

According to various traditions, the Jews of Spain and of Germany
developed, during Medieval times, minor differences in customs, traditions,
and linguistics, mainly because they lived in different social
environments ( mainly Moslem vs Christian dichotomies). As these were, at
one stage, the main centers of Jewish settlement in Europe, they became
dominat in their respective geographic areas, so that most Jewsih
communities took on the customs of the Spanish or German communities and
were said to follow the Sephardi or the Ashkenazi traditions. These names
remained even when the German community expanded into Eastern Europe, and
became dominant there, while the Spanish Community was expelled in 1492,
and became dominant in North Africa, the Turkish Empire and parts of
Western Europe (Netherlands, Belgium, Britain).

One very well known difference between these communities was in their
pronunciation of Hebrew. This was expressed in two or three fields, such as
ninor differences in certain consonants, major differences in certain
vowels, and differences in emphases in poly-syllabic words. Sometimes, this
was further exagerated by minor differences within these communities.

A few examples will suffice here. Two letters, "Chet" and unnaccented
"Chaf" are promounced similarly in Ashkenazi Hebrew, while among North
African Sepharadi Hebrew, these are differently pronounced. On the other
hand, the Ashkenazi Jews place a stronger differentiation beteen accented
and unaccented "Taf'" than do most of the Sepharadi Jews. Many vowels are
also pronounced differently, such as the "Cholam". This is pronounced by
the Sepharadim like th "O" in "for" , while the Ashkenazim pronounce it
like the "OA" in "Boat" or the "OY" in "boy". There are other, more
dramatic differences, such as the "Kamatz" which is prronounced by the
Askenazim like tha "A" in "all" while the Sepharadim usually pronounce it
like the "A" in "far".
These differences, and others, sometimes make it difficult for Ashkenazim
and Sepharadim to understand each other when sspeaking to each other in
their original dialects. On top of this, there are often frequent minor
differences within these dialects. The Lithuanians have minor differences
of pronucniation >from Poles, even though both communities are regarded as
"Ashkenazi". I shan't even go into certain differences in customs and
traditions, some of which derive >from more "modern" differences - such as,
for example, the split between the "Hassidim" and the "Mitnagdim"
("Misnogdim" in Ashkenazi Hebrew) about 200 years ago.

I hope that this explanation, though brief and somewhat shallow, will give
Mildred Lester a basic idea of the origins of the two words and the
differences between them.

All the best,
Chaim Charutz - Petach Tikva - Israel.


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Ashkenaz/Sepharadi #general

haim harutz <yairharu@...>
 

Subject: Ashkenazi,Sephardi
From: sim-fie@webtv.net (mildred lester)
Date: Thu, 6 Aug 1998 18:12:42 -0400 (EDT)
X-Message-Number: 15
Please explain the difference and what they mean?
Thank You, Mildred Lester
I presume that there must be an explanation somewhere in the infofiles or
the archives for these words, but I'll throw in my ha'pence worth, with
your kind permission.

The words are derived >from the medieval Hebrew names for "Gemany" and
"Spain". These words had their origins in the Bible.

According to various traditions, the Jews of Spain and of Germany
developed, during Medieval times, minor differences in customs, traditions,
and linguistics, mainly because they lived in different social
environments ( mainly Moslem vs Christian dichotomies). As these were, at
one stage, the main centers of Jewish settlement in Europe, they became
dominat in their respective geographic areas, so that most Jewsih
communities took on the customs of the Spanish or German communities and
were said to follow the Sephardi or the Ashkenazi traditions. These names
remained even when the German community expanded into Eastern Europe, and
became dominant there, while the Spanish Community was expelled in 1492,
and became dominant in North Africa, the Turkish Empire and parts of
Western Europe (Netherlands, Belgium, Britain).

One very well known difference between these communities was in their
pronunciation of Hebrew. This was expressed in two or three fields, such as
ninor differences in certain consonants, major differences in certain
vowels, and differences in emphases in poly-syllabic words. Sometimes, this
was further exagerated by minor differences within these communities.

A few examples will suffice here. Two letters, "Chet" and unnaccented
"Chaf" are promounced similarly in Ashkenazi Hebrew, while among North
African Sepharadi Hebrew, these are differently pronounced. On the other
hand, the Ashkenazi Jews place a stronger differentiation beteen accented
and unaccented "Taf'" than do most of the Sepharadi Jews. Many vowels are
also pronounced differently, such as the "Cholam". This is pronounced by
the Sepharadim like th "O" in "for" , while the Ashkenazim pronounce it
like the "OA" in "Boat" or the "OY" in "boy". There are other, more
dramatic differences, such as the "Kamatz" which is prronounced by the
Askenazim like tha "A" in "all" while the Sepharadim usually pronounce it
like the "A" in "far".
These differences, and others, sometimes make it difficult for Ashkenazim
and Sepharadim to understand each other when sspeaking to each other in
their original dialects. On top of this, there are often frequent minor
differences within these dialects. The Lithuanians have minor differences
of pronucniation >from Poles, even though both communities are regarded as
"Ashkenazi". I shan't even go into certain differences in customs and
traditions, some of which derive >from more "modern" differences - such as,
for example, the split between the "Hassidim" and the "Mitnagdim"
("Misnogdim" in Ashkenazi Hebrew) about 200 years ago.

I hope that this explanation, though brief and somewhat shallow, will give
Mildred Lester a basic idea of the origins of the two words and the
differences between them.

All the best,
Chaim Charutz - Petach Tikva - Israel.


Lipshitz etc. #general

haim harutz <yairharu@...>
 

David Goldman asked:

Can anyone explain how a name like Lifshitz gets its variations? It can be
Livshitz, Lipshitz or Lifshitz. How is it that it wasn't easy just to
stick
to one consonant, either v, f or p? Was it geographical?
There are a number of reasons why many names have spelling and
pronunciational variations. These are partly geographical, partly
linguistic, partly ethnic.
The main reason is the linguistic variation. Jews, for various historical
reasons, have been spread out in various parts of the world in which
different languages are spoken, and have adopted the local languages, or
adopted their own variations of these languages. The problem is that these
languages frequently use differing forms of writing, which don't always
have exact equivalents for all their letters, or when they do have the same
alphabets, pronounce the same letters differently.

The result is that, when a Jew emigrates >from one country to another, he
has one of a number of choices. He can continue to spell his name the same
way he did in the "old" country, and take the risk that it will be
pronounced differently in the "new" country. Or he can change the spelling
of his name to adapt it to the pronunciation in the "new" country, thus
being forced to change the spelling of his surname. He can also, if he
wishes, change his surname completely, adapting it to the original meaning
or to the original sound.

The name "Lifshitz" and its variations is a very good example of this type
of phenomenon. There are various theories of the origin of this name, most
of them ascribing the name as being derived >from various towns in Central
and Eastern Europe, where languages such as German, Polish, Russian,
Yiddish, and other Slavic and Germanic languages were spoken and/or written
by the local Jewish communities. The same name was written/spelt in various
ways in these languages, and further adapted into English, when many of
these Jews emigated to English-speaking countries.

In Germanic countries, the name was apparently spelt Lipschitz or
Lipschutz" or "Liebeschutz". In "Lipschitz", the "c" was often dropped in
"Anglo-Saxon" countries, where the English "sh" was equivalent to the
German "sch", (see, for example, "shield" and "schild" which is in fact the
same word, spelt differently in English and in German).

Those who wrote their name in Yiddish, used the Hebrew alphabet, using the
letter "pay" for "P". This, in Hebrew and in Yiddish, is used for both "P"
and "F", and is pronounced according to its position in a syllable. The
result is that, in Yiddish or Hebrew, "Lipshitz" becomes "Lifshitz".

This would explain the wide variety of spellings common for "Lipshitz", as
well as other variations such as "Lipsey", "Lipson", "Lifson", "Lipskey"
and many other "Anglicizations".

I shan't go into the variations caused by Hebrew or Yiddish dialectical
variations, as that is a long story on its own, and does not really apply
to the name "Lipshitz".

BTW, my maternal grandfather was a Lipshitz.

All the best,
Chaim Charutz - Petach Tikva, Israel.


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Lipshitz etc. #general

haim harutz <yairharu@...>
 

David Goldman asked:

Can anyone explain how a name like Lifshitz gets its variations? It can be
Livshitz, Lipshitz or Lifshitz. How is it that it wasn't easy just to
stick
to one consonant, either v, f or p? Was it geographical?
There are a number of reasons why many names have spelling and
pronunciational variations. These are partly geographical, partly
linguistic, partly ethnic.
The main reason is the linguistic variation. Jews, for various historical
reasons, have been spread out in various parts of the world in which
different languages are spoken, and have adopted the local languages, or
adopted their own variations of these languages. The problem is that these
languages frequently use differing forms of writing, which don't always
have exact equivalents for all their letters, or when they do have the same
alphabets, pronounce the same letters differently.

The result is that, when a Jew emigrates >from one country to another, he
has one of a number of choices. He can continue to spell his name the same
way he did in the "old" country, and take the risk that it will be
pronounced differently in the "new" country. Or he can change the spelling
of his name to adapt it to the pronunciation in the "new" country, thus
being forced to change the spelling of his surname. He can also, if he
wishes, change his surname completely, adapting it to the original meaning
or to the original sound.

The name "Lifshitz" and its variations is a very good example of this type
of phenomenon. There are various theories of the origin of this name, most
of them ascribing the name as being derived >from various towns in Central
and Eastern Europe, where languages such as German, Polish, Russian,
Yiddish, and other Slavic and Germanic languages were spoken and/or written
by the local Jewish communities. The same name was written/spelt in various
ways in these languages, and further adapted into English, when many of
these Jews emigated to English-speaking countries.

In Germanic countries, the name was apparently spelt Lipschitz or
Lipschutz" or "Liebeschutz". In "Lipschitz", the "c" was often dropped in
"Anglo-Saxon" countries, where the English "sh" was equivalent to the
German "sch", (see, for example, "shield" and "schild" which is in fact the
same word, spelt differently in English and in German).

Those who wrote their name in Yiddish, used the Hebrew alphabet, using the
letter "pay" for "P". This, in Hebrew and in Yiddish, is used for both "P"
and "F", and is pronounced according to its position in a syllable. The
result is that, in Yiddish or Hebrew, "Lipshitz" becomes "Lifshitz".

This would explain the wide variety of spellings common for "Lipshitz", as
well as other variations such as "Lipsey", "Lipson", "Lifson", "Lipskey"
and many other "Anglicizations".

I shan't go into the variations caused by Hebrew or Yiddish dialectical
variations, as that is a long story on its own, and does not really apply
to the name "Lipshitz".

BTW, my maternal grandfather was a Lipshitz.

All the best,
Chaim Charutz - Petach Tikva, Israel.


Revision List #general

Howard Margol
 

Subject: Revision List
From: dianemail@aol.com (Dianemail)
Date: 6 Aug 1998 22:51:35 GMT
X-Message-Number: 17

I recently recieved Revision List translations for Bobriusk, 1811.
I have a two general questions I hope someone can answer:

1. What does it mean if a family is listed first, but with no occupation? I
understand this can be significant.

(I have seen quite a few revision lists >from Lithuania as I have visited the
Lithuanian archives on five different trips. I have never seen anyone's
occupation listed on a revision list.)

2. How does a Revision List differ >from a traditional Census?

(A Census, as we know it in the USA, is a snapshot of an exact period in time.
A Revision List is a census but with additional information about births,
deaths, etc. that may have occurred before or after the date the Revision List
was recorded. That is why it is called a Revision List - it was revised until
the next census was recorded.)

Howard Margol
Atlanta, Georgia


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Revision List #general

Howard Margol
 

Subject: Revision List
From: dianemail@aol.com (Dianemail)
Date: 6 Aug 1998 22:51:35 GMT
X-Message-Number: 17

I recently recieved Revision List translations for Bobriusk, 1811.
I have a two general questions I hope someone can answer:

1. What does it mean if a family is listed first, but with no occupation? I
understand this can be significant.

(I have seen quite a few revision lists >from Lithuania as I have visited the
Lithuanian archives on five different trips. I have never seen anyone's
occupation listed on a revision list.)

2. How does a Revision List differ >from a traditional Census?

(A Census, as we know it in the USA, is a snapshot of an exact period in time.
A Revision List is a census but with additional information about births,
deaths, etc. that may have occurred before or after the date the Revision List
was recorded. That is why it is called a Revision List - it was revised until
the next census was recorded.)

Howard Margol
Atlanta, Georgia


Do you have a digest mode? #general

Jane Lachs <Jane@...>
 

Do you have a digest mode?

Regards >from Jane Lachs in Munich

Researching SHAW, TINGLE, CRAWSHAW, FIRTH, BREARLEY, HAIGH in WRY
LACHS and SILBERFELD in PODGAYTSY and STRYGANTSY (UKRAINE)
Jane@Henio.Muc.De

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click on I want to MODIFY my subscription,
select DIGEST and submit request


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Do you have a digest mode? #general

Jane Lachs <Jane@...>
 

Do you have a digest mode?

Regards >from Jane Lachs in Munich

Researching SHAW, TINGLE, CRAWSHAW, FIRTH, BREARLEY, HAIGH in WRY
LACHS and SILBERFELD in PODGAYTSY and STRYGANTSY (UKRAINE)
Jane@Henio.Muc.De

MODERATOR NOTE: To receive JewishGen
Discussion Group in Digest mode send an
email to listserve@lyris.jewishgen.org
and in the message field simply say :
set jewishgen digest

To accomplish this online go to :
http://www.jewishgen.org/listserv/jg.htm
click on I want to MODIFY my subscription,
select DIGEST and submit request


Given name Peysak #general

JJG613 <jjg613@...>
 

I've encountered the given name Peysak a number of times over the years and now
it's got me wondering. Is there any relation between the name Peysak and the
names Josef or Jossel?

Thank you.


Jonathan Goldmacher
JRI-Poland Project
Project Coordinator
PRZASNYSZ Shtetl CO-OP
New York, NY

Searching: GOLDMACHER, GOLDMAN, MAK, MALOWANCZYK >from Poland (Przasnysz,
Pultusk, Ciechanow, Nasielsk, Neistud, Mlawa, Sierpc, Serock, Warsaw)


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Given name Peysak #general

JJG613 <jjg613@...>
 

I've encountered the given name Peysak a number of times over the years and now
it's got me wondering. Is there any relation between the name Peysak and the
names Josef or Jossel?

Thank you.


Jonathan Goldmacher
JRI-Poland Project
Project Coordinator
PRZASNYSZ Shtetl CO-OP
New York, NY

Searching: GOLDMACHER, GOLDMAN, MAK, MALOWANCZYK >from Poland (Przasnysz,
Pultusk, Ciechanow, Nasielsk, Neistud, Mlawa, Sierpc, Serock, Warsaw)


(fwd) eejh Synagogues in Vojvodina #hungary

Bob Friedman <inwood@...>
 

On Fri, 7 Aug 1998 16:40:06 +0200, "Nikola Roth" <nikon@bozic.co.yu>
wrote:

There is a project about Jewish Heritage in Vojvodina(Yugoslavia) and
anyone who want to participate in it is welcome! Also, we have collected
data about 75 synagogues in Vojvodina.But, there would be useful if =
someone
could give us anything ( family story or something like that) that could
help us in this project, especially for Banat.
Please, reply to this e mail address: nikon@ bozic.co.yu


Hungary SIG #Hungary (fwd) eejh Synagogues in Vojvodina #hungary

Bob Friedman <inwood@...>
 

On Fri, 7 Aug 1998 16:40:06 +0200, "Nikola Roth" <nikon@bozic.co.yu>
wrote:

There is a project about Jewish Heritage in Vojvodina(Yugoslavia) and
anyone who want to participate in it is welcome! Also, we have collected
data about 75 synagogues in Vojvodina.But, there would be useful if =
someone
could give us anything ( family story or something like that) that could
help us in this project, especially for Banat.
Please, reply to this e mail address: nikon@ bozic.co.yu


question: #general

MS DOROTHY G HARPER <WHPT69A@...>
 

My grandparents are buried in one of the three jewish cemetaries in
New Haven Ct.

How can I find out where? I am visiting next month and have a friend
who lives near there who can do research.

They died about 1924-1927 .. Ezra KAPLAN and wife Fage Cohen KAPLAN...


can anyone help me find them? or their records?
Dorothy G Harper


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen question: #general

MS DOROTHY G HARPER <WHPT69A@...>
 

My grandparents are buried in one of the three jewish cemetaries in
New Haven Ct.

How can I find out where? I am visiting next month and have a friend
who lives near there who can do research.

They died about 1924-1927 .. Ezra KAPLAN and wife Fage Cohen KAPLAN...


can anyone help me find them? or their records?
Dorothy G Harper


Seligmann could be Asher #general

Judith Romney Wegner
 

Claude Wachtel asked
Subject: seligmann or salomon ?
I am looking for infos on czekh families. My grand grand father has the
german first name Seligmann. Was it the german first name for Salomon
????
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Seligmann has no connection in meaning with Salomon/Solomon -- though it's
not impossible that someone might name a child Seligmann as a "Soundex"
for Solomon. It's far more likely, though, that your ggf Seligmann had
the Hebrew name "Asher" (probably after one of his own ancestors) -- which
translates into the German word "Selig" -- both names meaning
"fortunate", i.e. "blessed with good fortune." Our ancestors of the 19th
century and earlier knew more about Hebrew and Yiddish than most later-born
Jews, and frequently selected a child's Yiddish name to convey the meaning
of the Hebrew name given at the "Bris" ceremony. In the Bible, Asher
is the name of one of the tribes of Israel, whose eponymous ancesto,
according to the Torah, was Asher, one of the sons of Jacob (see Genesis
30:13 which actually explains the meaning of the name Asher as "fortunate"
-- based on something his mother Zilpah said when he was born).

The practice of picking a European name merely for its closeness in sound
(rather than in meaning) to a child's ancestral Hebrew name is relatively
modern -- in other words, generally post-1800, which was when the Jews of
Western Europe began gradually to blend more into their gentile
surroundings following the Enlightenment and Emancipation. But in earlier
times, if parents gave their son a Yiddish name in addition to his Hebrew
name, it would normally have reflected either the meaning of the Hebrew
name itself or else some other word closely connected with the name (for
instance, the Yiddish name Velvel often goes with the Hebrew name Benjamin
because Benjamin is metaphorically called a wolf -- "Binyamin Ze'ev" in
Genesis 49:27).

These connections are extremely useful when doing genealogical searches,
since connections like Selig with Asher or Wolf with Benjamin can help
one to make an informed guesses as to whether persons with a particular
surname are more likely to belong in one "line" of that surname rather
than another in a particular town. For instance, in looking up Collins (a
common surname with scads of entries) in the English records, it paid off
to check out Benjamins born in the relevant time frame because the first
name Woolf occurs frequently in earlier generations of that family.

Judith Romney Wegner
jrw@brown.edu


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Seligmann could be Asher #general

Judith Romney Wegner
 

Claude Wachtel asked
Subject: seligmann or salomon ?
I am looking for infos on czekh families. My grand grand father has the
german first name Seligmann. Was it the german first name for Salomon
????
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Seligmann has no connection in meaning with Salomon/Solomon -- though it's
not impossible that someone might name a child Seligmann as a "Soundex"
for Solomon. It's far more likely, though, that your ggf Seligmann had
the Hebrew name "Asher" (probably after one of his own ancestors) -- which
translates into the German word "Selig" -- both names meaning
"fortunate", i.e. "blessed with good fortune." Our ancestors of the 19th
century and earlier knew more about Hebrew and Yiddish than most later-born
Jews, and frequently selected a child's Yiddish name to convey the meaning
of the Hebrew name given at the "Bris" ceremony. In the Bible, Asher
is the name of one of the tribes of Israel, whose eponymous ancesto,
according to the Torah, was Asher, one of the sons of Jacob (see Genesis
30:13 which actually explains the meaning of the name Asher as "fortunate"
-- based on something his mother Zilpah said when he was born).

The practice of picking a European name merely for its closeness in sound
(rather than in meaning) to a child's ancestral Hebrew name is relatively
modern -- in other words, generally post-1800, which was when the Jews of
Western Europe began gradually to blend more into their gentile
surroundings following the Enlightenment and Emancipation. But in earlier
times, if parents gave their son a Yiddish name in addition to his Hebrew
name, it would normally have reflected either the meaning of the Hebrew
name itself or else some other word closely connected with the name (for
instance, the Yiddish name Velvel often goes with the Hebrew name Benjamin
because Benjamin is metaphorically called a wolf -- "Binyamin Ze'ev" in
Genesis 49:27).

These connections are extremely useful when doing genealogical searches,
since connections like Selig with Asher or Wolf with Benjamin can help
one to make an informed guesses as to whether persons with a particular
surname are more likely to belong in one "line" of that surname rather
than another in a particular town. For instance, in looking up Collins (a
common surname with scads of entries) in the English records, it paid off
to check out Benjamins born in the relevant time frame because the first
name Woolf occurs frequently in earlier generations of that family.

Judith Romney Wegner
jrw@brown.edu