Hebrew in an English country churchyard #unitedkingdom #translation

Ittai Hershman

Tangentially, in London there are legit Hebrew quotations on memorial plaques of Christians involved in the 19th century "London Society for Promoting Christianity amongst the Jews" that are now located in Hawksmoor's Christ Church Spitalfields.  For those interested in the back story, UPenn Professor David Ruderman has written a couple of books, and you can also find lectures he has delivered online.  For photographs I took of them, see: https://goo.gl/photos/LdHZkXGoSNZoNQP4A

And next time you're in the Old City of Jerusalem, see Christ Church Jerusalem, literally across the road from the entrance to the Tower of David Museum.  It is the most unusual church you will ever have seen.

Ittai Hershman

Eva Lawrence

Since the grave is in a churchyard, I'd  guess that the deceased was a  Christian theologian,  and that this is a  quotation with a Christian significance. Hebrew was usually part of a Christian cleric's education. 

Eva Lawrence
St Albans, UK.


I don't think it is a date. We really need to see more of the stone. in any event even according to your logic, the numbers add up to 948 (400 + 60 + 400 + 60 +20 + 8), and it would certainly not be 1948. if it were a hebrew year it would have to be 4948 and that would translate to 1187-1188 on the gregorian calendar. What looks like a date is further down that has the numbers 856 (could be 1856 with the first number chopped off). More is needed in terms of the age of the cemetery and the age of the stone. It would be a big help if a picture of the whole stone could be taken. Since it is in a church yard, there might be records from the church which could shed some light.

Yeshaye Goldberg

Belinda Kaye

Please could you provide more information. The name of the Church and where this is located in the UK. Many thanks
Belinda Kaye


I too would like to see the entire gravestone.
In the meantime, this is a weird 'first-timer' for me - never seen anything like it - and I've seen hundreds of stones.
However, I'll take a 'thinking-out-of-the-box' stab at it:
I'll assume the letters are as follows:
In Hebrew numerology:
ת = 400
ס = 60
כ = 20
ח = 8
Add everything up and you get 928.
Could it refer to 1928, as the 'thousands' are usually dropped in Hebrew gravestone numerology? 
Seeing what is inscribed to the right and underneath would certainly help decipher this mystery.
Steve Goldberg
Jerusalem, Israel
Sagan/Shagan family from Veliuona (Velon), Lithuania
Goldberg family from Vidukle, Lithuania
Susselovitch/Zuselovitch family from Raseiniai (Rassein), Lithuania

Herbert Lazerow

    Tell us more about the context of this Hebrew inscription.  Is it on a gravestone? What is the full text of the accompanying English and Latin inscription? In what part of England is it located?
Herbert Lazerow
Professor of Law, University of San Diego
5998 Alcala Park, San Diego CA 92110 U.S.A.
(619)260-4597 office, (858)453-2388 cell, lazer@...
Author: Mastering Art Law (2d ed. Carolina Academic Press 2020)

Herbert Lazerow
Professor of Law, University of San Diego
5998 Alcala Park, San Diego CA 92110
Author: Mastering Art Law (Carolina Academic Press, 2d ed. 2020)


Do you have a photo of the entire stone?   It might be decipherable in relation to the remainder of the text.
Fredel Fruhman
Brooklyn, New York, USA

Jeremy Lichtman

Looks like a very interesting story. Any idea of the full name on the stone?


Jeremy Lichtman
Toronto, Canada


The translation I believe is “how did you hide?” It looks as if it could have been added later, because it’s not quite rightly spaced from the next line. A convert who hid his identity, and this added by a Jewish relative? Just a guess.

Frayda Zelman

Geoffrey Weisgard

Is anybody able to explain this Hebrew inscription I saw in a country churchyard. I have so far received the following suggestions

It relates to a date
It is a form of blessing
It has something to do with Freemasonry
It has nothing to do with Freemasonry
The use of the letter samech implies a foreign (non Hebrew) word

Any other ideas?

Geoffrey Weisgard
Manchester, UK