Thursday 27 April 2017


            The son of Yankev Halevi Lipshits, he was born in Vilyampolye (Vilijampole), near Kovno, Lithuania.  He attended religious elementary school and studied with his father and in yeshivas.  He acquired secular knowledge with private tutors.  He later supported himself by running a small dry-goods store and by selling his own and his father’s religious texts.  He was a leader in the Orthodox Agudat Yisrael and Aḥdut (Unity) in Lithuania.  He published essays and assembled sayings from the Talmud and Midrashim in Orthodox publications out of Kovno: Idisher lebn (Jewish life) (1922-1926, 1933), Der ortodoksisher idisher lebn (The Orthodox Jewish life) (1934), Di idishe velt (The Jewish world) (1934), and Haneeman (The faithful) in Telz, among others.  In Kovno’s Folksblat (People’s newspaper), he ran (until 1937) a daily column entitled “Mir gefelt es” (I like it).  He also contributed work to: Di idishe shtime (The Jewish voice) in Kovno; Dos vort (The word) in Vilna; Dos idishe togblat (The Jewish daily newspaper) in Warsaw; and Beys-yankev zhurnal (Beys Yankev journal) in Lodz; among others.  His books include: Interesant un balerndik, a zamlung fun talmudishe maymorim, aforizmen fun gdoyle-hador (Interesting and instructive, a collection of Talmudic essays and aphorisms from giants of the era) (Kovno, 1934), 96 pp.; Der gaystiker prozhektor, a likht un vegvayzer in lebn (The spiritual searchlight, a light and guide in life), four parts (Kovno, 1935-1938), each 84 pp.; Der lebediker shas (The living Mishna), on the genius of Rogachov and other articles (Kovno, 1937), 88 pp., second edition (1938), 104 pp.; Lebens-geshikhte fun ṿelt-goen rabi yitskhok elkhonen un fun zayn zun hagoen rabi tsvi-hirsch rabinovits (Biography of the brilliant Rabbi Yitskhok Elkhonen and of his son, the brilliant Rabbi Tsvi-Hirsh Rabinovits) (Kovno, 1939), 105 pp.; Arikhes yomim, der veg fun lebn un glik far eltern un kinder (Long life, the guide to life and happiness for parents and children), published under the Lithuanian regime (Kaunus, 1940), 32 pp.  He published his father’s three-volume Zikhron yaakov (The memory of Jacob) in Kovno from 1924; it also appeared in his German translation (Frankfurt, 1925-1931), three parts.  He was murdered in the first Nazi mass murders of Slobodka Jews.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2 (under the biography of his father, Yankev Lipshits); information from his grandson, Rabbi Lifshits in Fall River, Massachusetts; Encyclopedia Judaica, vol. 10, pp. 997-98.
Khayim Leyb Fuks

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