Sunday 11 June 2017


GERSHON-KHAYIM LEVNER (b. January 8, 1864)
            He was born in Great Tokmak, southern Russia.  He received a traditional Jewish education, studying Talmud and commentators and later Hebrew and grammar.  He subsequently turned his attention to business.  Aside from essays in Hamelits (The spectator), Hatsfira (The siren), and Hamagid (The pfreacher), he wrote under the pen name Gḥ”l in Hebrew: “Hatavaa shel rav moshe ben arye” (The testament of Rabbi Moshe ben Arye) (1883), “Silon mamir” (Malicious torrent), and “Raim vetovim” (Bad things and good), among others; and in Yiddish, over fifty story booklets published in Vilna.  He also wrote popular science articles in Der yudisher familye (The Jewish family) in 1902 and elsewhere.  His two-sheet story booklets (which he dubbed “novels”) sold at two kopeks per copy and were all published by Avrom Kahane—they are all listed in Levner’s biography in Zalmen Reyzen’s Leksikon.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2; Zalmen Zilbertsvayg, Leksikon fun yidishn teater (Handbook of the Yiddish theater), vol. 2 (New York, 1934).

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