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Thread: Yiddish

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    Default Yiddish

    Here is a link to a Yiddish glossary. It is just a sample of words used in Yiddish. Some of the words on the list (and some Yiddish words not on the list) have become part of the English language. Do you recognize any of the words?

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    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    I recognise quite a few- we use many in British English.

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    Certainly, klutz, chutzpah and kibitz have become part of the English language. I have also heard the expression, "That's a cockamamie idea."
    • Yiddish Borrowings

      bubkes -- lit. beans; nothing
      chutzpah -- gall, nerve, or brashness
      drek -- shit, literally or figuratively
      kibitz -- meddle; offer gratuitious advice
      kluz -- dullard; clumsy person
      kosher -- fit to eat under Jewish dietary laws; proper, legitimate
      maven -- expert, connoisseur
      mensch -- admirable human being; person of dignity and integrity
      nosh -- snack, nibble, or eat a bit
      putz -- lit. penis; jerk
      schmooze -- have a heart-to-heart talk; chitchat or gab with one's associates
      shlep -- drag, haul around; trudge
      shlock -- shoddy, poorly-crafted items
      shmaltz -- lit. rendered chicken fat; mawkish over-sentimentality
      shmuck -- lit. penis; bad person, idiot, fool, or bastard
      shnook -- pathetic but lovable fool, easy mark, or sucker
      shnoz -- nose, especially a large one
      tush -- buttocks

      (From the Word Menu.)


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    There are others where the origin is less well known, like'slapper' which comes from 'schlep', meaning journey, and is used to describe someone (usually a woman) who has 'been around' in her time.

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    That's a good one.

    :wink:

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    I liked it- I'd never have suspected its origins.

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