Calque Hebraization of Yiddish Surnames

Just an interesting experiment as to how standard Jewish surnames would be translated into Hebrew through their literal meanings.

Surname Elements

+Er>(agentive noun)>+án

+Son/Witz/Wicz/Vich>(son)>Ben+

+Ski>(adjectival case)>+i/Shel+

Adel>(precious)>Yaqar

Apple/Apfel>(apple)>Tapúaḥ

Auer>(meadow)>Aḥu

Bach>(brook)>Peleg

Baum>(tree)>Etz/Ilan

Berg>(mountain)>Har

Bloom>(flower)>Peraḥ

Ep>(water/river)>Mayim/Nahar

Fein>(fine)>Meshubaḥ

Feld>(field)>Sadeh

Fried>(peace)>Shalom

Green/Gron>(green)>Yarók

Gold>(gold)>Paz

Gott>(god)>Yeho+/+El+/+Iah

Heim>(home)>Bayit

Krasny>(beautiful)>Yafa (f)/Yafe (m)

Man/Mann>(man)>Ish+/+i

Morgen>(morning)>Boker/Shaḥarit

Neu>(new)>Ḥadash

Perl>(pearl)>P’nina

Rosen (rose)>Vered

Roth>(red)>Adom

Rubin>(ruby)>Odem

Ruder>(oar)>Mashot

Schild>(shield)>Magen

Schwartz>(black)>Shaḥor

Silver/Silvery>Kesef/Kaspi

Smith/Schmidt>(smith)>Nápaḥ

Stein>(stone/hill)>Even/Tel

Thal>(valley)>Emek

Wein>(wine)>Ḥemer

Weiss>(white)>Lavan

Weiz>(wheat)>Ḥita

Wolf>(wolf)>Zev

Zucker>(sugar)>Sukar/Manna/Agammarah (after the brackish pool Marah that Moses came upon and sweetened with a plank of wood. Even today, Bedouin tribes would put shrubs in brackish waters in order to sweeten them)

#

Examples

Abramovich>(son of Abraham)>ben-Avram

Adelstein>(precious stone/hill)>Evenyaqar/Telyaqar

Applebaum>(apple tree)>Ilantapúaḥ

Birnbaum>(pear tree)>Etzagas/Ilanagas

Bloomberg>(flower mountain)>Harperaḥ

Epstein>(water/river stone/hill)>Evenmayim/Telmayim/Evennahar/Telnahar

Feinstein>(fine stone/hill)>Evenmeshubaḥ/Telmeshubaḥ

Feldman>(field man)>Ishsadeh/Sadehi

Goldberg>(gold mountain)>Harpaz

Goldschmidt>(gold smith)>Napaḥpaz

Goldstein>(gold stone/hill)>Evenpaz/Telpaz

Gottfried>(god’s peace)>Shalomel/Shalomiah

Levisky>(of the Levites)>Shellevi

Morgenthaler>(morning valley-dweller)>Emekanboker/Emekanshaḥarit

Ratner>(rat council)>Mo’atzahulda

Rothschild>(red shield)>Magenadom

Rubinfelder>(ruby fielder)>Sadanodem

Schwartzperl>(black pearl)>P’ninashaḥor

Weinstein>(wine stone/hill)>Evenḥemer/Telḥemer

Weizmann>(wheat man)>Ishḥita/Ḥitahi

Zuckermann>(sugar man)>Ishsukar/Ishagammarah/Agammarahi/Ishmanna

#

Works Cited

Feyerabend, Karl. “Langenscheidt’s Pocket Dictionary: Hebrew-English.” Langensheidt Publishers, Inc.

Edited by Adele Berlin and Marc Zvi Brettler. “The Jewish Study Bible: Torah, Nevi’im, Kethuvim.” 2nd Edition. Jewish Publication Society. Oxford University Press.

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