more on "break a leg" --- (about Yiddish kunna hurra)

Cohen, Gerald Leonard gcohen at MST.EDU
Sun Mar 15 16:00:24 UTC 2009

The Yiddish form is kunna hurra  (Kein ein hora=No evil eye, literally: no (kein) eye (ein; from Hebrew), ha (the), ra' (bad, evil; from Hebrew), i.e. "No eye (of) the evil."

    If more information on this is sought, I yield to my very knowledgeable colleagues on the Jewish languages discussion group (jewish-languages at

    Btw, for the last part of kunna hurra (ra) I find the following in

7451. ra' (rah)
7452 >> <>

>From ra'a' <> ; bad or (as noun) evil (natural or moral) -- adversity, affliction, bad, calamity, + displease(-ure), distress, evil((- favouredness), man, thing), + exceedingly, X great, grief(-vous), harm, heavy, hurt(-ful), ill (favoured), + mark, mischief(-vous), misery, naught(-ty), noisome, + not please, sad(-ly), sore, sorrow, trouble, vex, wicked(-ly, -ness, one), worse(-st), wretchedness, wrong. (Incl. Feminine raaah; as adjective or noun.).

Gerald Cohen


Original message from RonButters, Sun 3/15/2009 10:32 A.M.:


I think the Yiddish word is something like "anharra". At least, one of my
friends years ago used to say, "Don't put an aharra on it." He said his parents
had explained it as 'the evil eye'.


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