Monday, May 25, 2015

Alexander Beider's books

Through the years doing genealogy I have had great help from these two books by Alexander Beider:

A Dictionary of Jewish Surnames from the Kingdom of Poland 

A Dictionary of Jewish Surnames from the Russian Empire

For this cemetery project, with so few family names on the gravestones,  a third book he has written, became very important:

In the Dictionary of Ashkenazic Given Names I found the more unusual names I encountered and could see the different spellings of names  in different languages. 

I now also  understand the difference between Shem Kodesh (Holy name, used in religious life) and Kinnui (Nicknames).

F.ex. Yitzchak can be Ajzik or Eisig.
         Zvi can be Hersch or Hersz.

A fourth book, that I do not own, would probably also be helpful.

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