There is a certain Yiddish lullaby called "Oyfn Pripetshik," which was written by Mark Warshawsky in the late 1800s. Here you can see the lyrics in the original Yiddish with no translation, and here you can view the transliterated lyrics and the translation.

What I am wanting to know here is that I feel this song has a hidden meaning, and maybe there is someone out there who might be able to apply a meaning to it other than the meaning it already has, concerning Yisroel being in galus.

Perhaps someone could apply this song to mean something relating to Chanukah or a menorah?

Back Story:

My mother gave me a menorah today and she told me it was very special. When I asked her where she got it, she said she would not tell me because we should only thank Hashem, but she did tell me the menorah had a lot to do with the old Yiddish lullaby "Oyfn Pripetshik."

  • 2
    This sounds to me like a very personal memory association with her parents or grandparents or another person who was close. It may be that the menorah was the sole remnant from the Holocaust, smuggled out of somewhere, or hidden. The end of the song relates how many tears have been shed during galut in order to learn and keep Torah. Perhaps this menorah served a lot of people to keep the flame of Hanukah alive. If she can't bring herself to express this verbally, maybe she could write a witness for Yad Vashem. Maybe then she would release the pressure enough to share the story.
    – Epicentre
    Dec 22 '16 at 6:06
  • 1
    I am not sure this question is on topic.
    – mevaqesh
    Dec 22 '16 at 9:24

The pshat of this song may be its primary meaning, but I think that there is a shadow behind the fire of something else.

I think the "children" are the B'nei Yisroel. The warm shtub is a metaphor for the beis hamikdash with its perpetual fire, which is the lost home of the Yidden in exile. "Der Rebbe" may be Moshe Rabeinu or H' Alone

"Zogt zhe nokh a mol un take nokh a mol" ~ וְשִׁנַּנְתָּם לְבָנֶיךָ, וְדִבַּרְתָּ בָּם

In shtub iz heys--in our Temple in Yerushalayim , בְּשִׁבְתְּךָ בְּבֵיתֶךָ

I would like to propose an edit to the song, and I wonder if there are any versions that reflect it - say, the original? It really should be "herT zhe, kinderlekh [ 'komatz aleph "o"')]". Thereunto, I think it might be worth making a study of how the three verses of "Oyfn Pripetshik" correspond to the three paragraphs of the original Jewish lullaby, the Shema.

Vifl in di oysies lign trern-- This means something quite subtle indeed.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .