Tuesday, August 30, 2016

A Taste of Yiddish 3.47

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this week”s proverb
אויף צו ראַטעווען די שטאָט סדום פון זיך איבּערקערן האָט מען געדאַרפט צען צדיקים; אָבּער איבּערקערן די גאַנצע וועלט נעמט נישט מער ווי איין נאַר

af tsu ra'teven di shtot sdom fun zikh i'berkern hot men gedarft tsen tsadikim; ober iberkern di gantse velt nemt nit mer vi eyn nar

the proverb actually means
to keep Sodom from being destroyed, ten righteous people were needed; but to destroy an entire world, all it takes is but one fool

translated to Hebrew
בכדי להציל את סדום שלא תהפך, היה צורך בעשרה צדיקים לפחות, ואילו כדי להפוך עולם ומלואו - די בשוטה אחד

In Genesis 18, three men came, thought by most commentators to have been angels appearing as men, to Abram (Abraham) in the plains of Mamre.
After the angels received the hospitality of Abraham and Sarah, his wife, the Lord revealed to Abraham that he would destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, because their cry was great, "and because their sin is very grievous."[Gen 18:20] In response, Abraham inquired of the Lord if he would spare the city if 50 righteous people were found in it, to which the Lord agreed he would not destroy it for the sake of the righteous yet dwelling therein. Abraham then inquired of G-d for mercy at lower numbers (first 45, then 40, then 30, then 20, and finally at 10), with the Lord agreeing each time.[Gen 18:22-33] Two of the angels proceeded to Sodom and were met by Abraham's nephew Lot, who convinced the angels to lodge with him, and they ate with Lot.
Genesis 19:4-5 described what followed, which confirmed its end:
4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:
5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.
Lot refused to give his guests to the inhabitants of Sodom and, instead, offered them his two daughters "which have not known man" and to "do ye to them as is good in your eyes".[Genesis19:8] However, they refused this offer and threatened to do worse to Lot than they would have done to his guests, and then came near to break down the door. Lot's angelic guests rescued him and struck the men with blindness, thereby revealing to Lot that they were not ordinary men but angels, and they informed Lot of their mission to destroy the city.[Genesis 19:9-13]

Then (not having found even 10 righteous people in the city), they commanded Lot to gather his family and leave. As they made their escape, one angel commanded Lot to "look not behind thee" [Genesis19:17] However, as Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed with brimstone and fire from the Lord, Lot's wife looked back at the city, and she became a pillar of salt.[Genesis19:23-26]

Express It In Yiddish Vol 1: Body Language”
500 Yiddish expressions and idioms about the nuances and mannerisms of body language. The body speaks its own language

אַ גוטע וואָך

Chaim Werdyger
Bringing back the Yiddish language

A proverb is a short, generally known sentence of the folk which contains wisdom, truth, morals, and traditional views in a metaphorical, fixed and memorizable form and which is handed down from generation to generation

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