Sunday 19 June 2016


MIKHL VEBER (February 5, 1859-1907)
            He was born in Vorke (Warka), Warsaw district, Poland.  He received a Hassidic upbringing, and later acquired an interest in secular subject matter, acquainting himself with natural science and foreign languages.  In 1880 he served as a soldier.  In 1883 he moved to Warsaw and became a teacher in a school run by the Jewish community.  He debuted in print with an article “Litsvo tsava” (Called to army service) in Hamelits (The advocate) in October 1880.  In 1886 he was a regular contributor to Hatsfira (The siren).  He published popular scientific treatises in Haasif (The harvest), Hoyz-fraynd (House friend), Yud (Jew), and Yudishe familye (Jewish family), among others.  He published in Hebrew, among other works: Ḥaye olam haba (Life in the world to come), about natural science (Warsaw, 1889), 160 pp.; Mapat hashamayim (Mapping the heavens), popular astronomy (Warsaw, 1898), 16 pp.; Mikdame olam (From before the world), about the story of the creation of Earth (Warsaw, 1899), 80 pp.  In Yiddish: Der yudisher feld arbayter, a metode tsu erlernen, ṿi azoy men bedarf bearbayten di erd in yeden ort (The Jewish farmer, a method of learning how one should cultivate the earth in each place) (Warsaw, 1891), 156 pp.; Gegen der kholire (Contra-cholera) (Warsaw, 1892), 38 pp.; A sof fun der ṿelt, oder mayse breyshis, a populere visnshaftlikhes (An end to the world, or the tale of Creation, a popular science [approach]) (Warsaw, 1895), 150 pp.—second edition entitled Di geheymnis fun der velt, oder a sof fun der velt, a populere astronomye (The secret of the world, or an end to the world, a popular astronomy), with 32 figures in the text (Warsaw, 1904), 150 pp.; Der hoyz-doktor (The house doctor), “good advice for every mother raising children” (Warsaw, 1895), 36 pp.  His translations include: Di gezetse fun militer-dinst (The rules of military service) (Warsaw, 1904), 36 pp.; Arbayts-kraft un kapital (Labor power and capital), a summary of Karl Marx’s Kapital (Warsaw, 1906).  He edited a series of holiday sheets, among them the literary weekly: Dos fraye vort (The free word) (Warsaw, 1906), 12 pp.  He was the first to forge a beginning for Yiddish terminology in the field of economics.  A fair amount of work by him remains in manuscript.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 1; A. Kirzhnits, Di yidishe prese in der gevezener rusisher imperye, 1823-1916 (The Yiddish press in the former Russian empire, 1823-1916) (Moscow, 1930), p. 28; Y. Shatski, Geshikhte fun yidn in varshe (History of Jews in Warsaw), vol. 3 (New York, 1954), pp. 208, 310.

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