3
votes
2answers
147 views

What does the word לאַטקעס (latkes) mean?

לאַטקעס is the Yiddish word used for the potato pancakes commonly eaten on Chanukah. Where does the word לאַטקעס come from originally? What exactly does it mean?
6
votes
5answers
2k views

What does Heimishe mean?

Literally it means "homey." But I'm asking about the sociological meaning of the group of people who call themselves "Heimishe." My best guess is that it means "midway between Hassidish and Litvak." ...
6
votes
3answers
214 views

Difficult phrases in the “Sale of Chametz” document

I am currently working on a clarification of the document which is usually used by rabbis to sell chametz to a non-Jew. The version I am working with is that of Harav hagGaon Avraham Aharon Yudelewitz ...
4
votes
2answers
394 views

Etymology of the word “Kvater”

What is the etymology of the word "Kvater"? Kvater is what we call the person that carries the baby boy into a Bris.
4
votes
1answer
545 views

What do the names Pesil, Pesa, and Pesha mean?

What is the meaning and source of the name Pesil or Pesa or Pesha?
4
votes
4answers
208 views

Why do we call praying, Davening?

Why do we call praying Davening? What is the source of this word? Where did this originate?
3
votes
1answer
280 views

What is the origin of “shul”?

What is the origin of the word "shul", meaning "synagogue"? It seems derived from the German "Schule", meaning "school". Moreover, Italian Jews call synagogues "scuola", which also means "school" ...
3
votes
2answers
126 views

Etymology of “Grager”

What is the Etymology of “Grager”? Grager is the noisemaker we use on Purim during the Megila when Haman's name is read.
3
votes
3answers
190 views

Etymology of “Krepel”

What is the Etymology of “Krepel”? Krepel is a 3 cornered stuffed piece of dough that we eat on Purim, Hoshana Rabah, and Erev Yom Kippur.
4
votes
3answers
117 views

HamanTashen - 3 cornered cookies

Why are 3 cornered cookies called HamanTashen?
1
vote
4answers
442 views

Tzanua…Not Tznius!

People often say tznius when they mean to say tzanua. Do you know of any other examples in Hebrew, Aramaic, or Yiddish in which people use the noun but they really mean to use the adjective?
3
votes
2answers
339 views

What's the etymology of the Hassidic term “b'sho'oh” for a chaperoned quasi-date?

I've heard in the Hassidic world, if two families decide that one's young fellow should meet the other's young lady, the couple has a brief, chaperoned, meeting, known as a b'shoh (spelling?), to ...
8
votes
6answers
279 views

Source of the Yiddish word Cholent

Does anyone know what is the source of the Yiddish word Cholent?
4
votes
4answers
1k views

What in the world is a shtender?

Who made up the name shtender, and who started using the term?
5
votes
2answers
266 views

What does Yarmulka mean?

What does the word Yarmulka mean?