Nathan Su"sskind (was: Antedating of schlemiel (1889))

Mark A. Mandel mamandel at LDC.UPENN.EDU
Tue Feb 24 14:04:34 UTC 2004

Gerald Cohen wrote:


   Btw, the late Nathan Süsskind was Professor Emeritus of German and
Jewish Studies (City College, NYC) when I first met him in the 1980s.
I was startled to see that he had a variety of manuscripts in various
stages of completion but had resigned himself to not publishing any
more. I quickly realized that circumstances had presented me with an
important task for the scholarly community, namely encouraging him to
complete his unfinished work and publishing it. His items appeared in
my series of working papers _Comments on Etymology_, primarily in a
supplement I started for him, _Comments on Judaism_. I later compiled
the most important ones in my _Etymology and Linguistic Principles_
(vol. 2; 1991).


Mr. Su"sskind (as we knew him then, without doctorate or professorial
rank) was my German teacher at City College ca. 1971. My wife and I
remember him with great fondness.

I was an experienced language student and was often the first to answer
a question. Mr. Su"sskind started using me as a foil in class, something
like: "Please, Harris, try again. From Mandel I'd expect such a mistake,
but not from you!" Although I knew, and we all knew, that he wasn't
serious, I felt hurt by these remarks, and once I pulled up the courage
to tell him he was immediately apologetic and stopped at once.

We have recently moved from the Boston area to Philadelphia, and my wife
reminded me that he was the only person we knew of to move to a larger
apartment just to have space for his books.

-- Mark A. Mandel
   Linguistic Data Consortium, University of Pennsylvania

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