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[Page 383]

The Rabbis of Pshaytsh

Translated from the Hebrew by Marshall Grant

© by Roberta Paula Books

The important rabbis who lived and worked in the city of Pshaytsh over recent generations. We present the names of four important rabbis who served in the city up to Rabbi Alexander Zemelman, may God revenge his soul. I remember rabbi Zemelman as having a wonderful personality; he was witty, sharp and diverse in his endeavors. His two daughters live in Israel, as do several other of his students who will share their memories of his life and of his death as a courageous soldier in the Warsaw Ghetto. The first rabbi of Pshaytsh for whom we were able to find relevant material was Rabbi Yaakov Ori Shraga Horowicz.


Rabbi Yaakov Ori Shraga Horowitz

Rabbi Yaakov Ori Shraga Horowicz, son of Yitzchak Itzik and Reina Michla, was a recognized and rare scholar. Every Friday night he would light many candles. In his childhood he traveled to the great rabbi of Ciechanów, who told of how he would dip in a ritual bath before lighting the Chanukah candles.

He filled in for his father, Rabbi Yitzchak Itzik from Rypin, in the local rabbinate, but he decided to forgo this institution and settled in Przedecz. He left many new Torah interpretations and a commentary of the Passover Hagada, “Hagadat Yaakov” (see picture). His father, Rabbi Yitzchak Itzik was the student of Rabbi Moshe Leib from Sassov. He refrained from all of life's luxuries, and in his last will and testament wrote that he never benefited, “even in the smallest amount from this world, except what he earned by his own hands to feed his soul.” His friend, Rabbi Natka Makover, said he had righteousness in every bone and fiber in his body. Rabbi Bonam, the respected rabbi from Peshischa, would visit his home when he passed through the city, even though he lived in a small room. He left many innovative ideas regarding oral Torah, the five books of the Torah and many kabbalah scriptures. When on his deathbed, on the evening of Sukkot in 1823, he asked that he be brought to the sukkah in his bed. When he arrived in the sukkah, he was very moved and kissed the sides of the structure. After saying the kiddush and prayers blessing the sitting in the sukkah, he was returned to his home. He passed away on during the Sukkot holiday, 1823, the 18th of Tishrei 5583. In his city of Rypin he was called “Mr. Righteous”. The father of Rabbi Yitzchak Itzik, Rabbi Meir, was the head of the Rabbinate court in Zaloshin and later a judge in Leszno. His book, Meir Hashachar (Dawn's Light) was printed in 1746 in Frankfurt and he shared his writings during morning prayers and when receiving the Shabbat.

The family provided commentaries for the Ba'al Halevushim (Mordecai ben Avraham Yoffe), Shelah HaKaddosh (Yeshayahu Ha-Levi Horowitz), Tosfot Yom-Tov (Yom-Tov Lipmann Heller) - some family members called themselves Gutantag - the translation for Yom Tov (good day), and there was also commentary for Rashi's volume 75.

Rabbi Yaakov Ori Shraga from Pshaytsh had two sons, one was Rabbi Meir Pshytshaar who settled in Lodz, and the second, Rabbi Itzik who settled in Kwawel. The entire family lived in the cities near Pshaytsh.

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The cover of the Passover hagada with commentary by the honorable Rabbi Yitzchak Itzik Horowicz, Mitaamei Yitzhak, and commentary by his son, the honorable Rabbi Yaakov Ori Shraga Pshaytsh Hagadat Yaakov/BILGORAJ, 1929


The commentary for the Hagada by the renowned late Rabbi Yaakov Ori Shraga is commentary full of the spirit of kabbalah, full of Gematria and longing for redemption and the return to Zion. He notes that the joy from the miracles that God made for our forefathers in Egypt is nothing more than the yearning for miracles to happen to us for our redemption from the “bitter and bustling” diaspora. He was gifted in piyyut (poetry), and at the beginning of Hagadat Yaakov is a poem that he recommends reading before the seder. The poem is arranged in alphabetical order and uses the first letters of his name as the first letters of each verse. This poetic work has concentrated content and boasts a sophisticated rhythm. It has pictures that testify to his fertile and original imagination that is entirely

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steeped in the Zohar. The Hebrew is rich mixed with Aramaic from the Talmud and kabala:

Your hands have created and guided me, I call you to help me,
See our terrible state, our souls have been given to strangers
The voice of Jacob calls to you like a dove in the depths of the sea

He makes being joyous difficult for all Jews in the diaspora, “and we are still his servants” [based on Talmudic quote] and “we are now in a tragic diaspora due to our many transgressions.” But we are happy because we know that we, with God's help, are committed to holiness, and it is known that no messiah will come until the entire generation is completely deserving, or God forbid, completely undeserving. Then Israel must be redeemed, lest they sink into the 49 gates of impurity… and the Gomorrah hints that even before the redemption, the messiah will come.”

The goal of holding a Passover seder means to become holy and free from all spiritual impurity, then the spirit of God will reside among Israel.

He passed away in Pshaytsh on Adar 16, 1839; March 2, 1839.

[Page 386]

Rabbi Haim Auerbach,
of Blessed Memory and Source of His Wisdom

Translated from the Hebrew by Marshall Grant

© by Roberta Paula Books

In memory of my father-in-law, the late Rabbi Avraham Shlomo Auerbach, the community elder of the Jewish community of Pshaytsh, the son of Rabbi Aharon and grandson of the great Rabbi Haim, of blessed memory. In the memory of his wife, Sarah, the daughter of the late great rabbi Shmuel Lemel Aiman, may God revenge him, and in the memory of the soul of my brother-in-law Rabbi Haim Aharon Auerbach, who died a martyr's death in the camps of Poznan, may God revenge him.


Rabbi Haim Auerbach, the Rabbi of Pshaytsh
5627-5660 (1867-1900)


Rabbi Haim Aurback, the esteemed rabbi of Pshaytsh served as the community rabbi and judge in the rabbinical court during 5627-5660 (1867-1900). He is a member of one of the most renowned rabbinical families in Poland, and his roots come from the well-known Kara family. According to the Jewish community's genealogy records in Liegnitz, the family comes from the great Jewish sage from Prague, Rabbi Yosef Karo.

[Page 387]

Memory of our Fathers!


From the book, Memory of our Fathers, by the great rabbi, Rabbi Menachem Natan Neta Auerbach, and the great rabbi, Rabbi Meir, Jerusalem, 5653 (1893)


In that genealogy document, it is told that the family's source of wisdom comes from a Jew who was exiled from Spain and lived in Amsterdam. He brought Torah to the city and its Jews - Szlomo Zalman Lipszyc of Poznan. He studied in the school led by the brilliant Rabbi Naphtali Katz, who was considered a present-day sage, where he discovered the writing of commentaries and Hasidic Judaism. The wise Rabbi Eliyahu Getz from the Pozan rabbinical court married his daughter. The brilliant young man forged his reputation following his commentaries of the Prophet Eliyahu. As written in the book Divrai Mishpat (Legal Issues) by Rabbi Haim Auerbach, the grandfather of the rabbi from Pshaytsh, he wrote many articles, although few were ever printed. His commentaries of Kohelet (Ecclesiastes) were printed in 1837 in Breslau (Wrocław). His son, Rabbi Shlomo Zalman was the head of the rabbinical court and head of Poznan's yeshiva and grandson of Rabbi Yitzhak Itzik, a judge from Leszno , the son-in-law of the wise Rabbi Haim Kara, the head of the rabbinical court of Liegnitz and Leszno. Rabbi Yitzhak Itzik was born and named Haim after his grandfather Rabbi Haim Kara, the brilliant Rabbi Haim Auerbach, a legal expert. He

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was educated in Leszno and served in the rabbinical court of Liegnitz. Rabbi Akiva Eigor, a contemporary, deemed him the “Great Wise Rabbi from Liegnitz”. His brilliant son, Rabbi Yitzhak Itzik replaced him in Liegnitz following a term in Płock. The son of Rabbi Haim was Rabbi Menachem, the head of the Ostrava rabbinical court, Rabbi Yitzhak Itzik, the head of the Dobra rabbinical court, and Rabbi Eliezer, who wrote respected commentaries.

The grandsons of Rabbi Haim, a son of Rabbi Menachem, were Rabbi Zvi Hirsch, of the Leszno rabbinical court and head of the Konin rabbinical court and author of Divrei Torah; Rabbi Yaakov, head of the Yarutshin rabbinical court in Prussia; Rabbi Meir from Kepno and Rabbi Eliezer from Ostrava. His grandsons from Rabbi Itzik were Rabbi Meir, considered to be very wise and head of the Kovel, Dobra, Kolo and Kalisz rabbinical courts and the first Ashkenazi rabbi in Jerusalem; Rabbi Yehoshua Faulk from Kleczew; Rabbi Avraham Moshe from Turek; and Rabbi Sholom Zalman from Lodz.

Amongst the grandchildren of Rabbi Haim, a legal scholar, (“divrai mishpat”) was Rabbi Haim Auerbach in Pshaytsh, a widely accepted sage. As I heard from his granddaughter, he was generous and devout, and always fasted on Mondays and Thursdays. He was involved in Torah day and night, and was known to fall asleep on hard benches, and not always his bed. The residents of Pshaytsh who survived remember his headstone in the local cemetery.



The great revered rabbi and teacher, Haim Auerbach, of eternal memory

Rabbi Coppal Zumar
His son, Rabbi Nachman Zumar
His son-in-law, our teacher, Rabbi Yitzchak Pearlmutter
Yitzhak Rosen
Leiv Pozner
Eli Sachtshevisky
The late David Zachlonesky,
Nachman Roich
His son, Avraham
Avraham Yosef Hamburger
Avraham Morgenstern
Yechiel Bialagalsky
Michael Sachtshevisky

A list of Pshaytsh residents, led by the great rabbi and teacher, Rabbi Haim Auerbach, from list of pre-subscribers for the book, Be'er Yehuda, Part I – the Rambam, by the great rabbi, Rabbi Avaraham Be'er Yehuda, head of the rabbinical court, Warsaw, 1885.

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He had a son who lived in Pshaytsh, the late Aharon; another who lived in Lodz, Yisaschar; the son of Aharon was Avraham Shlomo Auerbach, who supported the community of Pshaytsh from 5643-5683 (1883-1923). The children of Avraham Shlomo are Aharon Haim, 5670-5701 (1910-1941) who died a martyr's death in the Poznan workcamp, and his daughter, Esther Malka Brand-Auerbach, who currently resides in Jerusalem.

The origins of the Auerbach family begins in Germany. A document on the large family relates to Moshe Auerbach, the court Jew of the Bishop of Regensburg until 1497. According to the document I hold (see photo), in 1499 Moshe received the right to settle and trade in the city of Auerbach, located in the German state of Pfalz, not far from Regensburg, where the Hitlerist movement began. One of his daughters settled in Krakow, and became the mother of Moshe Ben Yisrael Isserles, 5280-5332 (1520-1572), an expert in Jewish law.

The entire Auerbach family of Poland died in the Holocaust, may God revenge their souls.


The writ of sponsorship for Moshe the Jew from Auerbach

Translated from the German version (above)
We, Philip et al, hereby declare to us and our descendants that Moshe the Jew from Auerbach and his descendants and his family members have been taken under our protection and provided sponsorship by virtue of this document, and he can, for the next 10 years, live in our city of Auerbach and in our country of Bayern. He is allowed to trade. He should be treated as if he was a member of this family. He is allowed to lend with interest and is allowed, under oath, to charge one pfennig for one golden, etc. Issued on September 2, 1499 by Prince Philip of the Palatinate (1476-1508)


[Page 390]

R'Moshe Chaim Blum z”l

Translated from the Hebrew by Marshall Grant

© by Roberta Paula Books

For the eternal memory of my father and teacher, Natan, son of my rabbi, Rabbi Yosef Zeev Brand and his wife Sarah Rivka, and my mother and teacher, Esther Chaya, daughter of the late Rabbi Mordechai Blum (son of the great and respected community leader, the late Aharon Blum), and his wife, Yenta, the daughter of Rabbi Eliezer Shapira. For the eternal memory of my brothers, the young Mordechai and Meir, and for the eternal memory of Shmuel Zvi, son of Rabbi Yosef Zeev.

Rabbi Moshe Haim Blum, son of the great Rabbi Avraham Binayamin, the head of the Vayaroshov rabbinical court, was born in 5332 (1875) and, at the age of 45, he was appointed as the rabbi and head of the rabbinical court of Pshaytsh in 5660 (1900) and served in the rabbinate for five years, and was recognized for his fairness and deep knowledge of all aspects of the Torah. He was later chosen by the community of Padamitch to be their rabbi and head of the rabbinical court. He served his people for 24 years.



A list of Pshaytsh residents the great rabbi, our teacher Moshe Haim Blum. From signatories of the book, Be'er Yehuda, Part II – the Rambam, laws of Teffilin, etc, by the great rabbi, Rabbi Avraham Shultzhower, head of the rabbinical court of Piotrków, 5665 – 1905.

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At the age of 55, he was honored with his appointment of rabbi for the city of Zamość in the Lublin Voivodeship, known for its rich Jewish history and esteemed rabbis.

He was known throughout Poland and many prominent scholars and rabbis often referred inquiries to him. Some of his responses were published in Sha'arai Torah, a religious magazine published by the great Rabbi Yitzchak Hakohen Feigenbaum of Warsaw. These commentaries revealed his immense knowledge, even at a young age while a member of the Pshaytsh rabbinate. He was dedicated in his writings and addressed various halacha issues. He also was a known author having written about the order of masechot (Talmudic tractates), one part of which, Tiferet Moshe, was even sent for printing.

When the second world war broke out, he escaped to Russia, and there made his way to the depths of the Siberian taiga. His writings were left with Rabbi Zvi Rimlat, the head of the rabbinical court, for safekeeping.

Rabbi Zvi died a martyr's death, all the Jewish homes in his city were destroyed, among them the great rabbi's. All the writings of Rabbi Moshe Haim were also lost, while news of the destruction of European Jewry reached Siberia. Rabbi Moshe Haim was already old and exhausted from suffering for so long without any of his holy books or even paper to write his Torah-related thoughts. However, his spirit was strong, similar to an ever growing spring. Then he learned of the loss of his writings, which caused him sorrow that even he could hardly contain – the entire collection of his life's work concerning the Torah and Talmud were gone.

Conversations with every visitor he met always focused on future redemption and consoled them with the redemption of the Jewish people. Some of his thoughts were written on snippets of paper, in pencil, and only titles, so he could return later and fill in the details. However, this task was never completed.

On the morning of the 9th of Kislev, 1943, while singing “Shir Hamaalot Mimaamakim” (From the depths I have called You, O Lord), he passed away in the city of Achinsk in Siberia, and was buried there in the Jewish cemetery.

Some of his original commentaries and sermons published in Sha'arei Torah were also published with writings of his son-in-law, Rabbi Haim Moshe Gostinski from Zamość, in his book, Nachlas Chamisha, in New York, 5709 (1948). Here, the thoughts and ideas written on scraps of paper during his time in Siberia, which could now be photographed, were included. Since the writings were very difficult to read, Rabbi Gostinski completed sections that were incomplete. The name given to this collection, Tiferet Moshe, is for his novel commentaries of Shisha Sedarim - the Six Orders of Mishnah, which had been prepared for print, but had yet to be published.

The scriptures of the great wise rabbi, Rabbi Haim Moshe Blum are clearly written as he delves into the depths of the Talmud and expresses both traditional and contemporary opinions. However, he also quotes the great sages from the area of greater Poland, mainly Rabbi Simcha Bonim from Peshischa, Rabbi Menachem Mendal of Kotzk and Rabbi Haim Larman from Płock. There were times when he would argue with the Admor of Peshischa, but he would do so in a soft and respectful manner, such as, “I was unable to understand his revered writings,” or, “in my humble opinion….it is not so severe.” However, in his sermons and commentaries concerning the weekly Torah portion, some of which were published in Tiferet Moshe, he would also use external sources from the Zohar, mainly in gematria (as can be seen

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The cover of the book, Tiferet Moshe, containing the collection of Nachlas Moshem, written by the great and esteemed Rabbi Moshe Haim Blum, New York, Moinester Publishing Co.


from the last section of the book concerning Shabbat Nachamu (the Sabbath of Comforting) in Tifert Moshe). Most interest focused on the challenges of redemption and the answers that will bring it to be.

I was unable to uncover more details about his family. His wife was from a family of rabbis and one of their sons was the late great Rabbi Shlomo Yechiel Mekalish, while the other was the late Rabbi Mordecai Zvi of Kagine. Another son was mentioned, Shmuel and Yehuda Arieh Meir.

The life of the righteous Rabbi Moshe Haim Blum symbolizes a life of Torah and the sanctity of Poland's Jewry.

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Rabbi Yehoshua Heschel David Goldshlag

Translated from the Hebrew by Marshall Grant

© by Roberta Paula Books


From VeYechye Ya'akov, questions and answers concerning the four parts of Shulhan Aruch, by Rabbi Ya'akov Zelig Goldshlag, Warsaw 5669 (1909)

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Rabbi Yehoshua Heschel Goldshlad, son of Rabbi Haim Zelig, the rabbi of Przedecz, served on the Pshaytsh rabbinate from the 15th of Av 5664 (1904) until 5684 (1924). In the past he served on the rabbinate in the city of Sierpc, where his father, Rabbi Yechiel Michal, preceded him. His father, Rabbi Ya'akov Haim, belonged to the Gur Hassidic movement and frequently travelled to see the Rebbe. He left the rabbinate and settled in Warsaw. There he published a book, Questions and Answers, including new evocative commentaries of the Talmud and the four parts of the Shulchan Aroch – Warsaw, Everything Written for a Good Life 5669 (1909). He also wrote the book, Marom Harim, containing new Torah interpretations by the great rabbi, Rabbi Yechiel Meir Megastinin that included commentaries from the rabbis from Kajac, Gur, Tschachenau and Radzymin. In the book, Bechi Harim (Cries of the Mountains), he laments the loss of great Admor from Gur. This collection contains commentaries from Rabbi Zelig Sharanyzker. Rabbi Ya'akov Haim Zelig also compiled a collection of philosophy and new interpretations of book by the late Yonatan Eybeschütz.

His grandfather was Rabbi Yechiel Michal GoldShlag, the head of the Sierpc rabbinical court. He was born on the 12th of Tevet, 5591 (1830) in the village of Sharanzak from the Shach family, and his mother was from the family of the late Rabbi Yechiel Michal Manamrov. He studied under the tutorship of Rabbi Yehoshula Cotner and the Gur rabbis. At the age of just 17, he was accepted to the rabbinate of Kikkel, Sharanzak, Padamvitch and Australanka. In the year 5625 (1865), he was appointed to head the rabbinate court of Sierpc. His brother, Rabbi Avraham Mordechai Goldshlag was the rabbi of Plonsk. The rabbi from Pshaytsh, Rabbi Yehoshua Heschel David was the son-in-law of the great rabbi Haim Lerman, who came from the family of Rabbi Yoel Sorkish (Habayit Hadash – the New Home) and the family of Rabbi David Ben Shmuel Halevi (Hatori Zahav – the Golden Lines). He was a generous and a generous person, a student of Kazek and Peshischa, was known as The Admor from Płock, Dovrin and Krashnovitch and wrote many books. He passed away on the 1st of Tevet, 5679 (1911). (Ed. Note: There is a date discrepancy. 5679 corresponds to 1919, whereas 5671 corresponds to 1911)

An old Hasidic Jew, a disciple of Rabbi Haim Lerman, once told me that the rabbi from Pshaytsh would meet with his son-in-law for long hours and discuss life's hidden wisdoms. He was tall with a welcoming personality. The chief rabbi of Tel Aviv, Rabbi Yitzhak Yedidia Frankel, told me that he knew Rabbi Yehoshua Heschel personally and described him as having an impressive personality; he was tall and everything about him radiated splendor - and he was a Torah scholar. The father of Rabbi Yitzhak Yedidia went to Pshaytsh to study Torah from the rabbi. He stayed with the city's families and was impressed with how generous they were toward Torah students. Pshaytsh, which was a small town, had no renowned yeshivas, but due to its great rabbis, it became a place where the students learned important things. This was its contribution to the students and the studies in Poland.

Words of the last rabbi or Pshaytsh, Rabbi Alexander Zemelman, will be written separately.

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Yiddish and Hebrew Reading in Przedecz

Translated by Jerrold Landau

© by Roberta Paula Books

The first Jewish settlers in Poland used the Polish language for hundreds of years. Jewish settlement took place simultaneously with German settlement in the area of Greater Poland. The German language was a common spoken language in the cities of Poland, as can be learnt from the many German words that also penetrated into Poland. However, it is possible to establish, with Dr. Y. Ben-Nun, that at the end of the 15th century or beginning of the 16th century, Yiddish overtook the Slavic spoken language. In that language, German of the ostmitteldeutsch form [Ed. Note: East Central German or Middle High German] dominated, but it also included Hebrew and Slavic roots, and later, even a few Russian expressions, including in our area. According to the divisions of the aforementioned research, Yiddish can be divided into the western form of Alsace, Burgland, Slovakia, and Hungary, and the eastern Yiddish of Eastern Europe. Lithuanian Yiddish is north-eastern. Central-eastern Yiddish is that of southern Eastern Europe, including Eastern Galicia. Central Yiddish is the Yiddish of western Galicia and of Greater Poland. Central Yiddish in its restricted meaning is that of Greater Poland, that is of our region. However, the Yiddish of Greater Poland differs from area to area, and even from city to city.

It is possible to establish that there was a great similarity in the Yiddish spoken in western Greater Poland from Kalisz to Włocławek. One can especially note the phonological similarity of the use of the demonstrative suffix similar to the German chen pronounced as che, which is soft, like the German demonstrative suffix. In Yiddish the suffix is written כיע.

We will present here a transcription in Latin letters of words and typical pronunciations as was spoken in Przedecz. It seems that this has not yet been done, and is worthwhile to record. The transcription is based on the book by Y. Bin-Nun with modifications based on Polish phonetics, and will be easier to understand by those not expert with the phonetics of that language, which influenced the Yiddish expressions in Przedecz.

Therefore, all the letters are written here with capital Latin letters. A significant shortening of the vowels, especially at the end of the words, as well as in the pronunciation of two or more words from one word (something common in the Yiddish of Przedecz), will be noted by a small letter. For example, מאכען (to do) MACHN will be listed as MACHyN. On the other hand, at times, the vowels are elongated and pronounced as diphthongs. Thus, for example the aleph with a kometz is written as Uu. However, at times there is an addition of a short e or y. When the word וואס [what] stands alone as a sentence, as the question “וואס?”, it is notated as WUyS, but when it is found as part of a sentence, it is pronounced in a shorter form, for example וואס ווילסט דו (what do you want) (וואס ווילסטו) – WUSWyLSTy. Vowels with a dagesh [a diacritic dot] are noted with a line on top. In the word “וואס?” as a question, the WUyS is pronounced as a diphthong Uy, but diphthongs are also found with other vowels, such as געהען – גייען (to go) is pronounced GAJN. On the other hand, וויין (wine) is pronounced as WAaN. Similarly the vowel א is the same as ע (that is an aleph with a segol), is pronounced as it is expressed in German, and is expressed as a diphthong – for example געלער – GEJLyR. On the other hand, with the ה that is equal to ע

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(that is, like an aleph with a segol), such as מענש MENS), the S is notated in Polish with a comma on top).

The ל is notated in Poland as a hard l with a line through it[1], or as a UAMyD, that is as a U with a vowel following. Apparently, there is a principle that this is the sound of the ל in all places, just as the name of the principal city of the general geographic area is notated with a l with a line through I – for example, in the areas of: Suwałki, Koło, and Włocławek.

The spoken language in the homes was almost exclusively Yiddish. However, in the latter period, between the two world wars, some of the youth spoke Polish amongst themselves. This was especially the case amongst girls. The Yiddish of the young generation was regular, and the Polish was good. Writing was primarily in Polish. The older generation spoke poor Polish from a grammatical and phonetic perspective, with the cz, sz, and rz being expressed in a soft fashion, like the שׁ in Yiddish. The youth spoke Polish even in the Zionist organizations. On the other hand, the Bund and left-leaning Poalei Zion were more particular about Yiddish. Even Aguda families spoke Polish at times.

The newspapers that were read were primarily Heint, Moment, Hentige Nies, and Der Veltshpigel from Warsaw. They also read the Jewish-Polish Nasz Przeglad.

In day-to-day life, the writing in Yiddish was according to the orthography appropriate to German – Deutschmerish. The knowledge of German was good enough, for many Germans lived in the area, and they naturally spoke German with the Jews. The knowledge of Polish among the Germans was often poor. Few in the city wrote Yiddish in the form used in the newspapers. In official speeches, they attempted to use the journalistic literary style. The Jews of Przedecz in Israel and the world speak Yiddish, Hebrew, or Polish amongst themselves. Many attempt to accustom themselves to the phonetics that is close to the north-eastern – i.e. Lithuanian – Yiddish, but they are not usually successful with this.

It would be worthwhile for the appropriate scholarly institutions collect the Yiddish expressions of the city of Przedecz and the surrounding area, for the memory of future generations, as well as for academic reasons – and study them in in a scientific fashion.

The reading of Hebrew was similar phonetically to Yiddish. We will suffice ourselves with brief examples in transcription to Latin characters, as per the following:


Here is a section from Ashrei Yoshvei Beitecha[3]


The ל is hard in Polish, a l with a line above, pronounced as a u followed by an appropriate vowel. The ש is noted as an S and s notated in Polish as an S with a comma above. The kometz is notated as a

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U but is expressed as a closed O followed by a silent shva. For the most part, the stress is penultimate syllable, and expressed with a comma following the notation.

The reading of the Torah, Haftarah, and Megillot was in accordance with the cantillation used throughout the Ashkenazic communities, and the prayer melodies were almost equivalent in those communities.

At the conclusion of this article for “The History of Przedecz and its Jews” I express my thanks to Dr. Yosef Kormish and Mrs. D. Dombrowska from Yad Vashem, and to Dr. Yaakov Goldberg from the Hebrew University for their assistance in collecting historical material; to Dr. Y. Bin-Nun for his advice that he gave me for the chapter in Yiddish. My special expression is extended to Mr. A. Wein from Yad Vashem for reviewing the manuscript. He stood at my side with advice and knowledge.

May they all be blessed.

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{Translator's note: This page gives examples of Yiddish words and expressions, with the transliteration into Latin characters, as per the protocols outlined in the above article. The page is included in this translation in its original. The structure, with the headings, is as follows:

Examples of the Phonetics of Yiddish in Przedecz

[Words included (in a simpler transliteration) are: mir viln (m'vil), men dertzeilt (m'dertzeilt), saychel, A feig, tzvei, drei, finef, nein, tate, shein, shteiner, shener, ich, du, es zenen da (s'zenen da), es shteit geshriben (s'shteit geshriben), kelbenen lung un leber, eiyer, a hun, heiner, hihner, kalb, kelber.]

Text from the book of Dr. Y. Ben-Nun. A phonetic transcription of Przedecz.

Yidn Gein in mikvaos arein, un das vasser is kalt, vi iz chlomish men in yeden shtetl tzo koyfn an oyvin. (Translation: Jews go to mikvas, and the water is cold, so in every shtetl they dream of purchasing an oven.)

The transcription also demonstrates the phonetical connection of words. A line above the letter indicates the stress.

y is read in the shortest possible fashion, and at times is pronounced as a very short e.

Ś is as in Polish

The excerpt was chosen as it is possible to compare the phonetics described above with the various phonetics of Yiddish brought by Bin-Nun.}


Translator's footnotes

  1. Ł or ł -- see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%C5%81 Return
  2. The Hamotzi blessing on bread. Return
  3. A prayer recited three times a day. Return

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{Translator's note: This bibliography contains sources in Polish, German, and Hebrew}

[Polish and German Sources]

Encyklopedia Orgelbranda ; Tom 21, Warszawa 1865.
Balinski-Lipinski Starozytna Polska, Wydanie drugie, Warszawa 1885.
Słownik geograficzny krolestwa polskiego, Warszawa 1887.
Wielka Encyklopedia Powszechna, Tom 9, str. 509. Warszawa 1905.
Rawita Witanowski, Michał ; Wielkopolskie miasto Kolo, Piotrkow 1912.
Majerski Stanislaw, Opis Ziemi, Wieden 1914.
Jewrejskaja Encyklopedja ; T. 12, Str. 911 “Przedecz”. Dombrowska Daniuta; Zagłada skupisk Zydowskich w “kraju Warty” w okresie okupacji hitlerowskiej. Bjul. zyd. instyt. histor. Nr. 13-4, 1955.
Wasiutynski Bohdan. Ludnosc Zydowska w Polsce. Warszawa, 1930.
Wasicki Jan ; Opisy miast polskich z lat 1793-1794, Cz. 1, Poznam 1962.
Miasta polskie w tysiacleciu. Zaklad narodowy im. Osolinskich, 1965.
Guldon Zenon ; Lustracja wojewodztw wielkopolskich i ku-jawskich 1628-1632, Cz. 3, Bydgoszcz, 1967.
Encyclopedia Judafca, Jerusalem, 1971.

* * *

Lawin L.; Deutsche Einwanderung in polnische Ghetti. Jahrb. jued. liter. Gesellsch. Bd 5, 1907.
Lawin Izak; Udzial Zydow w wyborach sejmowych w dawnej Polsce, Menorah, Warszawa 1932.

[Hebrew sources]

Mahler, Rafael; A Bundle of Information about the Jews of Koło. Sefer Koło, Tel Aviv, 1958.
Brand-Orban, Aharon: The rabbis of Koło From the End of the 18th Century. Sefer Koło, pp. 212-221, Tel Aviv, 1958.
Heilpern, Yisrael: The House of Israel in Poland, The Division for Youth Issues of the Zionist Histadrut, page 231, Jerusalem, 5704 [1944].
Heilpern, Yisrael: The Ledgers of the Council of the Four Lands, Mossad Bialik, 5705 [1945].
Zionist Archives, Elections for the 20th Zionist Congress, June 11, 1937, Jerusalem.

* * *

[Page 400]

Blum, Rabbi Moshe Chaim, Nachalat Moshe (Responsa, Exegesis) in the book Tiferet Moshe, New York, Moigeshter Ferlag, 5709 [1949].
Goldshalg, Rabbi Yaakov Chaim Zelig, Vayechi Yaakov, Responsa on the Four Sections of the Code of Jewish Law, Warsaw, 5669 [1909].
Horowitz, Rabbi Uri Shraga, Passover Haggadah, Explanations – the Haggadah of Yaakov Bilgoraya, 1929.
Sochaczewer, Rabbi Avraham, Avnei Nezer, Responsa, Piotrków, 5672 [1912].
Feigenbaum, Rabbi Yitzchak HaKohen, Shaarei Torah, Torah Manuscripts, Grossman, New York, Photocopies from the years 5663-64 [1903-04].
Kutner, Rabbi Yisrael Yehoshua, Yeshuot Malko, Responsa, Piotrków, 5687 [1927].
Sulzower, Rabbi Avraham, Beer Yehuda on Maimonides, Section I, Warsaw 5645 (1885); Section II, Piotrków, 5665 (1905).

* * *

Sefer Zamość
Sefer Lenchich [łęczyca], by Rabbi Yedidya Frankel, Tel Aviv. [Translator's noter: Rabbi Frankel was the father-in-law of Former Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau].
Beit Halevi, Yisrael David, History of the Jews of Kalisz, Publushed by the author, Tel-Aviv, 5721 [1921].
Sefer Kalisz
Sefer Koło, Edited by Mordechai Halter, Tel Aviv, 1958.
Sefer Ripin

* * *

Bin-Nun Jechiel, Jidisch und die deutschen Mundarien, Niemeyer Verlag, 1973.



  1. Synagogue
  2. Cemetery
  3. Chevra Tehillim
  4. Mikva
  5. Bank
  6. Beitar
  7. House of the rabbi
  8. Beis Midrash
  9. Slaughterhouse
  10. Young Mizrachi
  11. The pump
  12. Fire fighters
  13. Butcher shops
  14. City Hall
  15. School
  16. Police Station
  17. Library
  18. Post office
Map of the City of Przedecz


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