Sunday 8 January 2017


ALEKSANDR-ZISKIND COHEN (b. August 15, 1866)
            He was born in Mezritch (Międzyrzecz), Poland.  His journalistic activities began with correspondence pieces and feature essays in the Hebrew-language Hamagid (The preacher) and Hamelits (The advocate) and in the Russian Jewish Khronika voskhoda (Chronicle of the east).  Over the years 1895-1905, he was secretary of the society Aḥiasef in Warsaw and chronicler of Yud (Jew) and Hador (The generation).  From 1919 he worked as an internal contributor for Moment (Moment), in charge of notices from the foreign press.  He also published popular scientific articles in Ilustrirte vokh (Illustrated week) in Warsaw.  He published from his own publishing house a pamphlet entitled Af vos darf men lernen yidishe geshikhte? (Why should we study Jewish history?) (using the pen name Ben Dovid).  He also brought a series of translated pamphlets, such as: Hertsls broyt on arbayt oder solon in lidyen (Herzl’s “Bread without labor or Solon in Lydia” [original: Solin in Lydien]) (Warsaw, 1902), 22 pp.; Pyotr Kropotkin, Ksovim fun a revolutsyoner (Writings of a revolutionary [original: Memoirs of a Revolutionist]), two chapters from this immense work; An oyfruf tsu yungelayt (A call to youth), on sexual life; Yezus khristus’s lebn, yeshiye hanotsri, nokh di beste yudishe un kristlikhe kvelen bearbayt (The life of Jesus Christ, adapted from the best Jewish and Christian sources) (Warsaw: 1908), 46 pp.  For the “Family Library” of Haynt (Today), he prepared a series of pamphlets, among them: Di geshikhte fun aliles-dam (The history of the blood libel); Di shreklikhe momentn in der idisher geshikhte (Terrifying moments in Jewish history); Di amerikaner milarderen (The American millions); Di koylen-gruben (The coal miners); Di greste erfindugen (The greatest inventions); and Himel un erd (Heaven and earth).  Among his longer translations, the following were published: Sergey Nechaev, Di untererdishe koykhes (The underground strengths) (Warsaw, 1922), 111 pp.; Henry M. Stanley, Vi azoy ikh hob gefunen livingstonen (How I found Livingstone) (Warsaw, 1922), 157 pp.; M. Bern, Der kamf mit der natur (The struggle with nature) (Warsaw, 1922), 126 pp.; Louis de Rougement, Tsulib shvartse perl (Because of a black pearl) (Warsaw, 1922), 136 pp.; Wilhelm Bölsche, Mentsh un khaye (Man and animal) (Warsaw, 1922), 159 pp.; Professor Israel Abraham, Yidn in mitlalter (Jews in the Middle Ages [original: Jewish Life in the Middle Ages]) (Warsaw, 1923), 113 pp.; John Hagenbeck, Iber der indisher velt, iberlebenishn un vunderlikhe gesheenishn in indye, sumatra, yava un af di andaman-inzlen (Across the Indian world, experiences and wonderful occurrences in India, Sumatra, Java, and the Andaman Islands [original: Kreuz und quer durch die indische Welt (Right and left through the Indian world)] (Warsaw, 1925), 125 pp.; Professor Lasar-Kohn, Khemye in teglekhe lebn (Chemistry in daily life), vol. 1 (Warsaw: Di velt, 1923), 132 pp.; Pierre Benoît, Atlantida (original: L’Atlandide), a novel (Warsaw: Sh. Yatshkovski, 1924), 250 pp.; D. Evald, Dos lebn in vald (Life in the woods) (Warsaw, 1923), 152 pp.; Dr. Otto Hauser, Urmentsh un vilder, a paralel tsvishn der farhistorisher tsayt un der itstiker (Primitive man and the savage, a parallel between prehistorical times and the present [original: Urmensch und Wilder, eine Parallele aus Urwelttagen und Gegenwart]) (1923); Perets Smolenskin, Der vos hot geblondzhet (He who got lost [original: Hatoe bedarkhe haḥayim (He who has lost his way in life)]) (Warsaw, 1920s), with B. Epelboym.  Further information remains unknown.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2; M. Mozes, in Fun noentn over (New York) 2 (1956), p. 290.
Yankev Cohen

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