Klezmer, Tshatshke, Chollah (1908)

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Sat Jun 22 18:55:59 UTC 2002

>From the UNIVERSAL JEWISH ENCYCLOPEDIA, Ktav Publishing House, NY, 1969, vol. 8, pg. 55:

   Toward the end of the Middle Ages a special form of instrumental music developed among the Jews of Eastern Europe, known as Klezmer (a corruption of the Hebrew _kele zemir_, "instruments of song").

("End of the Middle Ages."  Homer Simpson makes the OED before "klezmer"!  The "klezmer revival" was twenty years ago!  There are 100,000 "klezmer" hits on Google!  Aah!--ed.)

by H. S. Stollnitz
Cambridge, Mass.
Printed for the Author

Pg. 4:  ..."Shadchen" (marriage broker)...

Pg. 5:  ..."Cheesoron" (bodily disablement)...

Pg. 6:  ...he was at his "shadchanic" wits' end...

Pg. 7:  "...for none can make better 'Draidlach' (tops) for Hanucca, carve finer swords for Tisha b'ab, make louder sounding 'Grechotas' (whirligigs) and 'Hooman Kleppers' (knucklebones) for Purim, (Pg. 8--ed.) and his services are eagerly sought after before Pesach as a Matzoth 'stippler' (perforator), to say nothing of the wonderful soldiers adn animals which he draws and paints every year for Shevuos.

Pg. 9:  ...haunted by the proverb, "Viel (Pg. 10--ed.) M'loches und wenig B'rochos" ("Jack of all trades and master of none")...

Pg. 12:  "Mazol tov!  Mazol tov!"  (Good luck!  Good luck!)

Pg. 29:  ..."Yeshibahs"--Talmud schools--...

Pg. 39:  ...the "Shivah"--first seven days of mourning--...

Pg. 47 (Chapter title):  THE "BASKOL" OR ALL'S FAIR IN LOVE AND WAR

Pg. 75:  She asked him to sit down on his "peckel" (packet)...

Pg. 83:  ..."Chazan" (cantor)...

Pg. 92:  He spoke the prayer over the "Chalos" (shewbread), and the repast progressed amid joy and the expressions of mutual appreciation and encouragement, Chatskel remarking that such a broth would be good enough for even the richest man.  But when the "gefillte" fish were put on the table, accompanied by freshly grated horse-radish, Chatskel's eulogies for hissister Esther Leben were beyond limit...
(OED has 1937 for "challah"??--ed.)

Pg. 93:  Mother and daughter feared he had swallowed a fish bone, and Esther, in her remarkable presence of mind, grasped the "gefillte kishke" (filled intestine) and thrust it into the throat of her beloeved CHatskel, which process would surely have suffocated the agonized man had it not been for Esther's presence of mind quickly to pull it out again.
   Once more happiness reigned and Chatskel turned his voice for "Zemiros" (the table hymns).

Pg. 99:  If Chatskel had had more candles and coul have availed himself of the services of a "Shabbos goye" (a non-Jewish woman who goes about to light the fires in Jewish homes on the Sabbath), who knows when the singing would have ceased, but against force there is no resistance.

Pg. 101:  ..."Baldarsher" (wandering preacher)...

Pg. 102:  After "Havdolo" (separating the Sabbath from the week days)...

Pg. 103:  ..."Malave Demalkeh" (leave taking of queen Sabbath)...

Pg. 105:  "Am I a 'schorrer' (beggar)?"

Pg. 106:  After the young man had departed, Chatskel exclaimed: "What a 'Tshatshke'! (a noble person who gives joy to his fellow people, like a toy to the child)."

Pg. 112:  He jumped from his chair, indulged in a "Kosatske" (dance of the Cossacks) and shouted: "To the Jews there was light with gladness and joy and honor!"

Pg. 117:  Chatskel joined several "Chevras" (societies)...

Pg. 148:  ..."Balsottke" (secret keeper).
   (...)  "You know I'm not a 'Plotkarke' (tale-bearer)..."

Pg. 149:  "So may I lead my daughter under the 'Choope!' (canopy of matrimony)," assured a third.

Pg. 156:  ...a "Get" (divorce)...

Pg. 157:  ...the "Herem" (ban)...

Pg. 163:
   SHEEKA KLEZMER, nicknamed "Malpa" (Ape), on account of his extreme homeliness, made his entrance into this world unheralded by song or much ado.

Pg. 163:  ..."Pod Shammes" (under-beadle).

Pg. 169:  In Russian Poland the Jews celebrate by a "Foorshpiel."  On the Saturday evening prceding the wedding the bride orders the "Klezmoorim" (musicians), to her home, where are congregated her _single_ girl friends.  Besides the musicians, no one of the masculine sex is permitted to be present.  To avoid any possibility of the dancing damsels coming in contact with the musicians, a "M'khitza" (partition) of some kind is improvised.  If the bride is wealthy she defrays the expense for the music, but in cases of limited means the guests pay for the music by way of "Einvarf'n" (throwing in).

Pg. 170:  The highest priced is the "Akhtoorya,"eight participants constituting a set, similar to the "Francaise."  The "Foorshpiel" lasts as long as the musicians receive pay.  At the close the "Klezmoorim" usually throw in one dance gratis.

Pg. 175:  "May I live to lead you (Pg. 176--ed.) under the 'Khoopa' (canopy of wedlock), during the ensuing year."

Pg. 185:  "...'Yaksoonim' (superior families).  So also came your sainted mother from 'Lamdonim' (savants), and 'Tsadikim' (pious and righteous)."

Pg. 190:  "Often the unknown 'Bosyak' (tramp), we see in the last stages of life in drunkend madness, in the poorhouse, or in prison, is perhaps one of them."

Pg. 193:  Himself an ardent lover of music, Wielnik, at any other occasion, would have continued with his eulogy of Sheeka, but felt that he but added coal to the fire of his daughter's love, and he reproached himself inwardly for his imprudence.  "Of course I know him only as Sheeka the Klezmer," he continued.  "His attributes as a man are a revelation to me."

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