The SEGAL name and Levites #general


MBernet@...
 

In a message dated 8/2/2003 5:22:47 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
chaikin@netvision.net.il in explaining why some Levite families are
surnamed SEGAL, writes:

<< The fact is that the Kohanim (priests) were >from the Levis, and we can
see in the book of Yeheskel, chapter 44, that the Levies sons of Zadok,
were the only priests who were aloud to enter the most holy place. >>

==This is an unfortunate misreading of the text. Zadok was one of the
earliest High Priests, >from the time of King David. For some reason this
line was termed "HaKohanim HaLevi'im" the Kohanim of the tribe of Levi
(which all Kohanim were in fact, descendants of [a great grandson of?]
Levi, the eponymous founder of the tribe). That is, they were a select
line in the select clan of Kohanim, who were all members of the tribe of
Levi.

==In the last period before the destruction of Jerusalem, the Zadokites,
their descendants and their political supporters, were known by the Greeks
(and in modern English) as the Sadducees.

==The Zadokites or Saducees were powerful politically, and claimed many
exclusive privileges--which made them the sole family >from which the
politically and economically powerful High Priests could be chosen.

==The reference cited >from Ezekiel 44 meant nothing more than that the
Zadok line of the Kohanim claimed the right to be the only ones to be
allowed entry into the Holy of Holies and hence to the exclusive claim to
the High Priesthood. SEGAL has no connection with Zadok or with Kohanim,
only with Levites who were not Kohanim..

==The question of how the surname SEGAL came to be associated with
Levites, remains unsolved.

Michael Bernet, New York


Udi Cain
 

Thank you Michael for sharpening the issue of the problematic connection of
Levis' and Kohanim, in the suggestions made by "Otzar Roshei Teivot".

You also wrote:
The question of how the surname SEGAL came to be associated with Levites,
remains unsolved.

Since we know of many SEGALs' who know that they are Levis', and since we
know of that surname after 1070 CE (it could have appeared much earlier,
but I don't have any proof for that), when the temple was only a virtual
remains in the hopes for the coming of the messiah and liberation, we can
quiet safely say that the Kohanim and Leviyim who were on charge of the
rituals of the temple, were now (and are until today)kept on "stand by",
until the new temple will be built, and functioned, psychologically, as
part of the hope...

The Hebrew word seggel means: staff / personal / suite / corpus / corps
etc.

In the ancient life of Israel, one could have found "seggel" either in the
ancient Israeli army, the Israeli king's court, or the Levis' who were the
"seggel" of the temple.
The Diaspora left the people of Israel with no army, nor king.
But the Levis' were there, and still are, kept as a remembrance of the
desirable ancient life and for the future temple, they are the only corps
"seggel", left for the Jewish people of the Diaspora...
So I suggest: Seggel Leviyim, or in short "SEGAL".

Best regards,
Udi Cain, Jerusalem

I am happy to invite you to my genealogy web site:

http://userpages.wittenberg.edu/dkazez/fam/Udi/books.html


Nick Landau <N.Landau@...>
 

You might wish to look at this explanation >from the Segal Organisation
(sic) which I found on the web.

http://www.segal.org/name/index.html

Nick Landau


MBernet@...
 

In a message dated 8/3/2003 2:20:13 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
chaikin@netvision.net.il (Udi Cain) writes >from Israel:

<< Thank you Michael for sharpening the issue of the problematic
connection of Levis' and Kohanim, in the suggestions made by "Otzar
Roshei Teivot".

==In defense of the authors of "Otzar Roshei Teivot", they made no
suggestion about the "connection of Levis' and Kohanim"--O.R.T is a
dictionary of acronyms (roshey teyvot) and they report simply what a
string of Hebrew initial letters is designed or believed to stand for.
Again, the Kohanim were descendants of Aron haKohen who, like his brother
Moshe, was a descenant of Levi.

. . . . The Hebrew word seggel means: staff / personal / suite / corpus /
corps etc. So I suggest: Seggel Leviyim, or in short "SEGAL".

==An alternative that i have been considering for many years and that I
stated very clearly in my most recent posting
< I have played with the idea that "Segel Leviah" ("of the Order of the
Levites") might be a better explanation for the term SEGAL when applied to
Levites, but I am apparently the only one who thinks Segel Leviah would be
an appropriate origin--and even I am very, very, very far >from being
convinced of this origin. >

As I said, I don't buy that explanation. Why did it take 1000 years for
it to suddenly appear in the Rhineland? Why has none of the great
scholars of the past come up with that suggestion?

The SEGAL-Levite problem has not really been solved.

Michael Bernet, New York


Udi Cain
 

Michael Bernet, New York MBernet@aol.com wrote:

=All very nice, but I know of no tradition that the Levites suddenly
organized themselves into a guild or anything else. Two Levi'im can not
even be called to the Torah in succession, and the only place I know where
two or more Levi'im (as Levi'im) could be found adjacant was when washing
the hands of the Kohanim before the latter mounted the Dukhan to pronounce
the threefold blessing. In the Rhineland, that would have averaged between
seven and eight times a year.

=I suppose that I was misunderstood in that one. I meant that just like the
union of Jewish tailors because of Jewish laws, the Levis' who took the
surname SEGAL, were branch of the Levies' who deliberately prepared
themselves to serve in the future temple (not all the members of the
extended Levi tribe served in the temple or meant to serve in the future
temple).

=Unless they were hiding >from the Kohanim or the tax authorities, there
was no reason for Levis to give their "guild" a new name. Levi'im was an
adequate name.

=In my paternal family I found the surname HALBE"Z [heh - lammed - bet -
tzadi], which is the initials of the written in the book of Yechskel,
chapter 44: ...Ha'Leviyim Bney Tzadok [The Levis' Sons Of Tzadok]. It is
indeed a rare surname in Ashkenazic circles, and I am trying to find out if
Levis' families of Bulgarian origin and >from the other hand of Bukharan
origin, who are called TZADIKOV, are the same as my HALB"Z.
So you have an example of Levis' who calls themselves in a different
surname, just like the SEGALs'.
So each branch chose a surname which gives hint about their origin
occupation, and kept it for the next temple...
Maybe HALB"Z = high priests, SEGAL = second to the high priests and or in
general: who served in the temple.

Best regards,
Udi Cain, Jerusalem


Udi Cain
 

Nick Landau news@btopenworld.com wrote:

You might wish to look at this explanation >from the Segal Organisation
(sic) which I found on the web.

http://www.segal.org/name/index.html

=In that web page I found another explanation which relates to the Hebrew
word "segol" (the color violet/purpel):
"It may have been a reference to the Levite color. This
explanation may be consistent with the other explanations, having been
intended as something of a pun in addition to the acronyms."

If I can recall, the ancient Hebrew word for violet was: "argaman".
The color was made out of winkles.
So it should have been: ARGAL / ARGAMAL (Argaman Levi) rather than SEGAL
:-))

Now to try and be more serious:
Just like the guilds which started to appear during the Medieval, the
Jewish "guilds" were of tailors [the importance of the Jewish tailors was
Because of the prohibition of sha'atnez (mixing incompatible threads -
wool and linen), special strictness had to be observed].
The "guild" of the Levis, was actually a virtual guild, people who kept the
tradition of being Levis, and got ready to serve in the new coming temple,
right after the entry of the Messiah.
The Messiah was on his way, and almost appeared in gaps of about hundred
years, but it turned to be fake, or better, none.
The crusaders made a lot of harm to the Jewish communities of Europe, but
from the other hand the desire and belief that the Messiah is coming soon,
increased...
So the Levies started getting ready and called their "guild" SEGAL.

If you decide to pore electronic "cold water" on me, but please make sure
that it will not include ice :-))

Best regards,
Udi Cain, Jerusalem


MBernet@...
 

In a message dated 8/4/2003 4:35:53 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
chaikin@netvision.net.il writes:

<< =In my paternal family I found the surname HALBE"Z [heh - lammed - bet -
tzadi], which is the initials of the written in the book of Yechskel,
chapter 44: ...Ha'Leviyim Bney Tzadok [The Levis' Sons Of Tzadok].

==I suggest that anyone who is still interested in the SEGAL-Levite
controversy, check out the entire verse 15 of Chapter 44 of Ezekiel which
starts with "vehaKohanim haLevi'im benei Zadok" which very clearly states
that these descendants of Zadok were Kohanim (as we know >from hundreds of
other sources) who are part of the larger tribe of Levi. I do not doubt
Udi's assertion that his ancestors adopted their name >from this verse, but
that can not in any way be a claim that those who are known in Modern
times as Levites are at the same time Kohanim.

Udi Cain follows with "I am trying to find out if Levis' families of
Bulgarian origin and >from the other hand of Bukharan origin, who are
called TZADIKOV, are the same as my HALB"Z.

==That is an interesting question but it has nothing to do with Segal.
I suggest it would best be posted on Sefardsig where Udi will find others
knowledgable about Bulgarian and Bokharan origins.

So you have an example of Levis' who calls themselves in a different
surname, just like the SEGALs'. So each branch chose a surname which
gives hint about their origin occupation, and kept it for the next
temple...

==Interesting. Perhaps Udi can explain the following Temple duties. All
were names assumed by my ur-known-ancestor, Suessl [ben] Hirsch haLevi:

Bernet
Frensdorf
Frensdorff (this was the line of rabbis and scholars in Hamburg and Hanover)
Feldheim
Elkan
Adlerstein
Marum
. . . and others.

==Levites and Kohanim diverged completely at least 2000 years ago. I am
not aware that there has ever been a group pf Ashkenazi Jews who were
anticipating, preparing for or training for an early restoration of Temple
worship and sacrifices (in fact Maimonides has very firmly stated his
belief that when the Temple is rebuilt, sacrifices will no longer be
offered there.

Maybe HALB"Z = high priests, SEGAL = second to the high priests and or in
general: who served in the temple. >>

==or anybody or anything in general. There can be no end to speculation
or to personal enquiry.

==Is it OK is we close now without knowing the answer why SG"L is a
frequently used acronym that denotes on a document, register, tombstone,
etc., that a specific person (who may bear one of thousands of names
other than the family name SEGAL) is or was a Levite? We just don't know.
We can make a few learned guesses, and we can make an unlimited number of
unlearned guesses.

Michael Bernet, New York

MODERATOR NOTE: Sounds like a good suggestion. This is veering
away >from genealogical issues. Further discussion of priestly
duties and practices should take place off list.


Stan Goodman <safeqSPAM_FOILER@...>
 

Just like the guilds which started to appear during the Medieval, the
Jewish "guilds" were of tailors [the importance of the Jewish tailors
was
Because of the prohibition of sha'atnez (mixing incompatible threads -
wool and linen), special strictness had to be observed].
The "guild" of the Levis, was actually a virtual guild, people who kept
the tradition of being Levis, and got ready to serve in the new coming
temple, right after the entry of the Messiah.
The Messiah was on his way, and almost appeared in gaps of about hundred
years, but it turned to be fake, or better, none.
The crusaders made a lot of harm to the Jewish communities of Europe, but
from the other hand the desire and belief that the Messiah is coming
soon, increased...
So the Levies started getting ready and called their "guild" SEGAL.
.... because they were all Levites, of course.

The Hebrew root Samakh Gimel Lamed is expressed in many words
(seventeen entries, even in the one-volume Even-Shoshan dictionary),
and not in all cases is it easy to see the common thread. Most of
these lexical possibilities have by now been proposed in this
discussion, although a prominent exception is the meaning "a
triangular arrangement of three dots, used as a vowel indication below
Hebrew consonants in an auxiliary writing system of medieval
invention". It is only a matter of time until somebody mentions a
three-dot birthmark on the cheek or forehead of Aharon haKohen,
progenitor of all the Levites.

--
Stan Goodman, Qiryat Tiv'on, Israel

Searching:
NEACHOWICZ/NOACHOWICZ, NEJMAN/NAJMAN, SURALSKI: >from Lomza Gubernia
ISMACH: >from Lomza Gubernia, Galicia, and Ukraina
HERTANU, ABRAMOVICI, LAUER: >from Dorohoi District, Romania
GRISARU, VATARU: >from Iasi, Dorohoi, and Mileanca, Romania

See my interactive family tree (requires Java 1.1.6 or better):
http://www.hashkedim.com

Please remove the CAPITAL LETTERS >from my address in order to send me
email, and include "JEWISHGEN" in the subject line, else your message
will be deleted automatically, unread.


MBernet@...
 

In a message dated 8/4/2003 7:23:47 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
chaikin@netvision.net.il writes:

<< The "guild" of the Levis, was actually a virtual guild, people who kept
the tradition of being Levis, and got ready to serve in the new coming
temple, right after the entry of the Messiah.
The Messiah was on his way, and almost appeared in gaps of about hundred
years, but it turned to be fake, or better, none.
The crusaders made a lot of harm to the Jewish communities of Europe, but
>from the other hand the desire and belief that the Messiah is coming soon,
increased...
So the Levies started getting ready and called their "guild" SEGAL.
>>

==All very nice, but I know of no tradition that the Levites suddenly
organized themselves into a guild or anything else. Two Levi'im can not
even be called to the Torah in succession, and the only place I know where
two or more Levi'im (as Levi'im) could be found adjacant was when washing
the hands of the Kohanim before the latter mounted the Dukhan to pronounce
the threefold blessing. In the Rhineland, that would have averaged between
seven and eight times a year.

==Unless they were hiding >from the Kohanim or the tax authorities, there
was no reason for Levis to give their "guild" a new name. Levi'im was an
adequate name.

Michael Bernet, New York


Stan Goodman <safeqSPAM_FOILER@...>
 

On Mon, 4 Aug 2003 20:20:13 UTC, chaikin@netvision.net.il (Udi Cain)
opined:

Michael Bernet, New York MBernet@aol.com wrote:

=All very nice, but I know of no tradition that the Levites suddenly
organized themselves into a guild or anything else. Two Levi'im can not
even be called to the Torah in succession, and the only place I know
where two or more Levi'im (as Levi'im) could be found adjacant was when
washing the hands of the Kohanim before the latter mounted the Dukhan to
pronounce the threefold blessing. In the Rhineland, that would have
averaged between seven and eight times a year.

=I suppose that I was misunderstood in that one. I meant that just like
the union of Jewish tailors because of Jewish laws, the Levis' who took
the surname SEGAL, were branch of the Levies' who deliberately prepared
It is only slightly off-topic to note that, had more of the Levites
chosen to adopt the SEGAL surname, John Wayne would have appeared in
movie westerns wearing segals rather than levis.

themselves to serve in the future temple (not all the members of the
extended Levi tribe served in the temple or meant to serve in the future
temple).
--
Stan Goodman, Qiryat Tiv'on, Israel

Searching:
NEACHOWICZ/NOACHOWICZ, NEJMAN/NAJMAN, SURALSKI: >from Lomza Gubernia
ISMACH: >from Lomza Gubernia, Galicia, and Ukraina
HERTANU, ABRAMOVICI, LAUER: >from Dorohoi District, Romania
GRISARU, VATARU: >from Iasi, Dorohoi, and Mileanca, Romania

See my interactive family tree (requires Java 1.1.6 or better):
http://www.hashkedim.com

Please remove the CAPITAL LETTERS >from my address in order to send me
email, and include "JEWISHGEN" in the subject line, else your message
will be deleted automatically, unread.


Robert Israel <israel@...>
 

Stan Goodman <safeqSPAM_FOILER@hashkedim.com> wrote:

It is only slightly off-topic to note that, had more of the Levites
chosen to adopt the SEGAL surname, John Wayne would have appeared in
movie westerns wearing segals rather than levis.
<chuckle>

But no, because it was Levi Strauss's first name, not
his surname. Actually, his original first name was Loeb, which he
changed to Levi after immigrating to the US, according to
<http://www.levistrauss.com/about/history/denim.htm>

Robert Israel israel@math.ubc.ca
Vancouver, BC, Canada