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Yiddish Given Names

A Lexicon

Rella Israly Cohn

This important volume in onomastics, the study of names, presents a listing of Yiddish first names in the modern period: 1750 to the present day. Yiddish Given Names: A Lexicon resumes, collects, documents, and corrects the available body of research on Yiddish given names. It aims to establish the modern corpus and give the origins of the names therein. Rella Israly Cohn has amassed and preserved a number of names that have become extremely rare, almost to the point of disappearing, and correctly identified their sources using a number of works both commonly available and difficult to find.

The book begins with preliminary material that orients the reader, explains technical terms and classifications, and describes the evolution of Yiddish names throughout their history. Following is the lexicon itself, which is comprised of over 250 names with variant forms and alphabetized according to the English transliteration. Each entry relates the Yiddish name to its source language, shows a source form, and gives the attestations of the name in its various forms in the earliest written works. Concluding with several appendixes that offer additional information and assist in reference and accessibility, this significant work will serve scholars in onomastics, linguistics, and Yiddish and will be of interest to both scholars and laypersons researching their family history or the cultural legacy of the Jewish community worldwide.
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Scarecrow Press
Pages: 432Size: 6 1/2 x 9 1/2
978-0-8108-5261-7 • Hardback • September 2008 • $201.00 • (£135.00)
978-1-4616-7454-2 • eBook • September 2008 • $191.00 • (£130.00)
Rella Israly Cohn (1927-2008) was a linguist and scholar.
This reference work will be of great service to historians, folklorists, sociologists, and linguists working with Jewish communities.... valuable....useful.
American Reference Books Annual, March 2009

Yiddish Given Names is recommended for linguists, onomasts, for libraries that have Judaica collections, and for genealogists interested in Jewish families and families with Jewish roots. This volume has succeeded in achieving Cohn's goal of offering a dictionary of Yiddish names.
Names: A Journal Of Onomastics