Tuesday 22 August 2017


            He was one of the pioneers of the Yiddish press in the United States.  When the follower of the Jewish Enlightenment and publisher Nakhmen-Ber Etelzon recognized in the 1870s that a Yiddish newspaper in Chicago could have success, he invited Markus to be its editor and began to publish the weekly Izraelitishe prese (Israelite press).  The newspaper appeared in eight pages with three columns to a page.  It also carried a Hebrew supplement entitled “Hekhal haivriya” (Palace of Hebrew).  The contributors were rabbis and Orthodox Enlighteners, and the weekly was distributed over all Jewish communities in North America.  The Yiddish section of the newspaper was mainly filled with information, while in the Hebrew section scholars in Chicago published their treatments on matters of Torah and research.  It appeared in Chicago 1877-1879, later moving to New York where it came out until April 9, 1884.  Markus later worked with Sorezohn in Yudishe gazetten (Jewish gazette) and Yidishes tageblat (Jewish daily newspaper)—in New York.  We now have only two photographic copies of Izraelitishe prese, one from the third year of publication (Chicago, dated April 4, 1879) and a second from the eighth year (New York, April 9, 1884), the very day that the newspaper ceased publication.  The former is reproduced in Pinkes fun amopteyl fun yivo (Records of the American division of YIVO), vol. 1 (New York, 1928), p. 139.  In that issue Etelzon is listed as the publisher and Sh. L. Markus as the editor.  Markus’s memoirs were published in the jubilee issue of Yidishes tageblat in New York (March 20, 1910), and republished in the Zamlbukh tsu der geshikhte fun der yidisher prese in amerike (Anthology, toward a history of the Yiddish press in America) (New York, 1934), pp. 46-48.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2 (in the biography of N. B. Etelzon); Kalmen Marmor, in Yudisher rekord (Chicago) (September 1916); Marmor, in Pinkes fun amopteyl fun yivo (Records of the American division of YIVO), vol. 1 (New York, 1928), pp. 49-52, 130; Marmor, Der onheyb fun der yidisher literatur in amerike (The beginning of Yiddish literature in America) (New York, 1944), pp. 11, 19, 129; E. R. Malachi, in Hadoar (New York) (November 27, 1936); Moyshe Shtarkman, in Zamlbukh lekoved dem tsveyhundert un fuftsikstn yoyvl fun der yidisher prese, 1686-1936 (Anthology in honor of the 250th jubilee of the Yiddish press, 1686-1936), ed. Dr. Y. Shatski (New York, 1937), pp. 116-20; Shtarkman, in Pinkas shikago (Records of Chicago) (1952), p. 71; Shtarkman, in Metsuda (London) 7 (1954), p. 516; Shmuel Niger, in Tsukunft (New York) (January 1940); Niger, in Algemeyne entsiklopedye (General encyclopedia), “Yidn 5,” p. 98.
Zaynvl Diamant


PEYSEKH MARKUS (May 20, 1896-March 1973)
            He was born in Vizhan (Wizajny), Suvalk district, Lithuania.  He studied in religious elementary school and in Rabbi Reynes’s yeshiva in Lide (Lida).  During WWI he lived in Olkenik (Valkininkai), later in Kovno, and from there in 1923 he made his way to the United States.  For a time he lived in Terre Haute, Indiana, and from 1927 he was in New York where he took up business.  His literary activities began with the writing of stories for Di idishe shtime (The Jewish voice) in Kovno (1918), where he later became a regular contributor.  He also contributed to: Vispe (Islet) (1921-1923), Lite (Lithuania) (1922), and Folksblat (People’s newspaper), among others—in Kovno.  In New York, he was (until 1948) a contributor to Frayhayt (Freedom), in which (among other items) he published serially the novels: A folk vert geboyrn (A people will be born) (1928-1929); Misnagdim (Opponents of Hassidism) (1930-1931); Koyenim (Priests) (1933); and Der amerikaner goylem (The American golem) (1935).  From 1948 he was tied to Tog (Day) and later to Tog-morgn-zhurnal (Day-morning journal), in which (aside from stories and sketches) he published the novels: Der vilner goen, farborgene veltn (The Gaon of Vilna, hidden worlds) (1949-1950), in book form (New York, 1952), 489 pp., and in Hebrew translation by Y. Parush as Olamot tmirim, sipur ḥaye hagaon mivilna (Hidden worlds, the story of the life of the Gaon of Vilna) (Jerusalem, 1954), 436 pp.; Di eybike yerushe (The eternal heritage), part two of Der vilner goen (1954); Der mekubl fun lite (The mystic from Lithuania), part three of Der vilner goen (1957); Di shtot fun mekubolim (The city of mystics), about Jews in Frankfurt-am-Main (1962-1963).  In the monthly journal Yidishe kultur (Jewish culture), he published, among other things, the novel Tsvishn yidn (Among Jews), about Jews in the West.  He also wrote pieces that appeared in: Di tsukunft (The future), Di feder (The pen), Signal (Signal), Getseltn (Tents), and Mosn (Criteria), also its editor—in New York; Lodzer tageblat (Lodz daily newspaper); Dos naye leben (The new life) in Bialystok; Dos folk (The people) and Frimorgn (Morning) in Riga; Di idishe tsaytung (The Jewish newspaper) in Buenos Aires; and Haynt (Today) and Folksblat (People’s newspaper) in Uruguay; among others.  In book form, he published: Arum shtal, a roman (Around the stable, a novel), a novel about horse dealers, two parts (Kovno, 1921), 182 pp.; A brik ibern atlantik, dertseylungen (A bridge over the Atlantic, stories), with drawings by Koyenovitsh (brother of Der Nister) (New York, 1932), 264 pp.  In the anthology Lite (New York, 1951), vol. 1, pp. 663-86, he published a portion of a long work, Midresh kovne (A tale about Kovno).  “His novel Der vilner goen,” wrote Shmuel Niger, “is a contribution to the love of Israel, for which he took the trouble to acquaint himself with historical, folkloristic, and other sources.”  “This was the first positive, scholarly novel,” noted Dr. A. Mukdoni, “in our Yiddish literature.”  He died in New York.

Sources: Avrom Reyzen, in Nay-yidish (New York) (October-November 1922); Biblyografishe yorbikher fun yivo (Bibliographic yearbooks from YIVO), vol. 1 (Warsaw, 1928), see index; B. Fenster, in Morgn-frayhayt (New York) (July 11, 1932; August 10, 1952); Z. Vaynper, Yidishe shriftshteler (Yiddish writers), vol. 1 (New York, 1933), pp. 105-8; Yudel Mark, in Zamlbukh lekoved dem tsveyhundert un fuftsikstn yoyvl fun der yidisher prese, 1686-1936 (Anthology in honor of the 250th jubilee of the Yiddish press, 1686-1936), ed. Dr. Y. Shatski (New York, 1937), pp. 290-91; N. Y. Gotlib and Y. Dan, in Lite (Lithuania), anthology, vol. 1 (New York, 1951), see index; Y. Varshavski, in Forverts (New York) (July 6, 1952); Dr. A. Mukdoni, in Morgn-zhurnal (New York) (August 3, 1952); Khayim Liberman, in Forverts (September 5, 1952); Y. Botoshanski, in Di prese (Buenos Aires) (September 12, 1952); Y. Rabinovitsh, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (September 19, 1952); Dr. Y. Shatski, in Der veker (New York) (September 25, 1952); E. Almi, in Fraye arbeter-shtime (New York) (August 9, 1957); Y. A. Rontsh, Geklibene shriftn (Selected works) (New York, 1960).
Khayim Leyb Fuks


YISROEL V. MARKUS (1884-May 7, 1946)
            He hailed from Lithuania, the son of the rabbi of Riteve (Rietavas), Rabbi Meyer Falk, and the younger brother of Barukh Markus who served as rabbi in Yafo and Haifa.  He was for many years a contributor, and for a time editor, of the daily newspaper Idisher kuryer (Jewish courier) in Chicago.  Aside from other items, he published in it essays on the weekly portion from the Pentateuch and the prophets.  He also placed work in Shikagoer vokhnblat (Chicago weekly newspaper), Zuntog kuryer (Sunday courier) in Chicago, and Der idisher kempfer (The Jewish fighter) in Philadelphia (1906-1907).  Together with N. Kravyets, Markus was co-editor of the weekly Kuryer (Courier) in Chicago in 1940.  In book form: Geklibene perl fun unzer kultur-oytser (Selected pearls from our cultural treasury), vol. 1: Breyshes, shmoys, vayikro (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus) (Chicago: M. Tseshinski, 1942), 257 pp., with a foreword by Dr. Shloyme Goldman.  Markus died suddenly in Chicago.  After his death, there appeared: Geklibene perl fun unzer kultur-oytser, vol. 2: Bamidbor, dvorim, yon-toyvim, megiles (Numbers, Deuteronomy, holidays, scrolls) (New York: Oym, 1947), 240 pp.  He usually signed his name: Dr. Yisroel Markus.

Sources: D. Tidhar, in Entsiklopedyah leḥalutse hayishuv uvonav (Encyclopedia of the pioneers and builders of the yishuv), vol. 4 (Tel Aviv, 1950), p. 1770 (under the biography of his brother, Rabbi Barukh Markus); D. B. Tirkel, in Pinkes fun amopteyl fun yivo (Records of the American division of YIVO), vol. 1 (New York, 1927-1928), p. 261; M. Ḥizkuni (Moyshe Shtarkman), in Pinkas shikago (Records of Chicago) (1951/1952), p. 76; L. Mishkin, in Pinkas shikago, p. 103; A. Reyzen, in Di feder (New York, 1942), p. 88; obituary notices in the Yiddish press.
Zaynvl Diamant

Monday 21 August 2017


DOVID MARKUS (b. March 3, 1916)
            He was born in Brok, near Warsaw, Poland.  He attended religious elementary school and the yeshiva in Ostrów-Mazowiecka (Ostrov-Mazovyetsk), later graduating from a Polish high school in Warsaw.  For a time he studied humanities at Vilna University.  When the Germans invaded Poland, he was confined in the Warsaw Ghetto, before making his way to Vilna and from there to Moscow en route to Japan.  Until late 1941 he lived in Kobe and until 1946 in Shanghai.  Over the years 1947-1951, he lived in Uruguay, later settling in Rio de Janeiro.  He contributed to Vilner togblat (Vilna daily newspaper) in 1940 and to Folksblat (People’s newspaper) in Montevideo (also its co-editor), in which, aside from a daily column on Jewish and general topics, he also wrote feature pieces.  He wrote as well for: Di tsukunft (The future) and Idisher kemfer (Jewish fighter) in New York; the weekly Unzer vort (Our word) in Montevideo (1948-1951), also its editor; and Der nayer moment (The new moment) in Rio de Janeiro.  He was editor of Di idishe prese (The Jewish press).  He was last living in Rio.

Sources: Forverts and Tog-morgn-zhurnal (both, New York) (March 11, 1954); Keneder odler (Montreal) (March 29, 1954); Y. Vaynshenker, Boyers un mitboyers fun yidishn yishev in urugvay (Founders and builders of the Jewish community in Uruguay) (Montevideo, 1957), p. 144.
Khayim Leyb Fuks


            He was, most likely, born in Germany.  He studied medicine in Königsberg.  In 1774 he moved to Poland, initially practicing as a doctor in Kopust (Kopyś), four miles from Shklov (Szkłów), Byelorussia, and later in Turisk, Volhynia, where for many years he was crown doctor close to the king and his lord’s commission.  With help from a Polish magnate, Michal Babrowcki, “in 1790…he published Sefer refuot, hanikra ezer yisrael (The book of remedies that is called Ezer Yisrael), for those who dwell in the land of Poland, written in Polish-Taytsh [= Yiddish], which Rabbi Moses, [also] known as Dr. Marcuze and well known to many people, wrote, and he was a government-employed doctor, appointed by the king and the commission, a crown doctor; and he wishes to benefit the people with his book, so that each person might be able to help himself [in places] where there is no learned doctor; and whoever holds to the course of conduct prescribed by him can avoid becoming ill.  Printed here in the holy community of Poritsk [Poryck] in the year 5550.”  (Roughly twenty printers’ sheets), with approbations from the Turisk rabbi, Yankev Kahane, who highly praised the author as a learned man and expert in his line of work.  Irrespective of the special character of Markuze’s work, the essence of which was to give the people the rudiments of hygiene and medicine, it is of extraordinary cultural historical and philological interest.  At this time, when the first followers of the Jewish Enlightenment were working hard to corrupt their Yiddish mother-tongue and vernacular so as to cripple Germanized Yiddish or pure German, Markuze, the “Taytsh” (as he called it himself), was about to write his book in Yiddish, and only then—when he gained a good handle on the Yiddish language as it was spoken in Poland.  This specialized medical text contained sufficient notes and digressions which had no connection to medicine or hygiene and were there to clarify to the people in their ignorance, in their wild fanaticism, and in their superstitions, and in this sense Markuze was a direct predecessor of that group of Jewish Enlighteners, for whom the ideals of the Enlightenment were not abstractions, but an impulse to true explanatory work among the people, to reconstruct Jewish life on healthy foundations.  Markuze presented himself through his book as a devoted friend of the people and humanist with a positive program of productive work of properly secured social assistance, of spreading agriculture and handicrafts among the Jewish masses.  His book was written in an authentic vernacular, though somewhat Germanized, Volhynian Yiddish, and in style as well Markuze was a pioneer in Yiddish literature and one of the few authors who gives us the thread of the developmental history of the Yiddish language, binding our contemporary living language with the Yiddish of the eighteenth century.  “A Yiddishist in the eighteenth century,” as dubbed by Noyekh Prilucki, whom, incidentally, we have to thank for bringing Markuze back into the public light.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2 (with a bibliography); Dr. Yisroel Tsinberg, Di geshikhte fun der literatur bay yidn (The history of Yiddish literature) vol. 7 (Vilna, 1936), pp. 185, 203; Sh. Lastik, Di yidishe literatur biz di klasiker (Jewish literature until the classics) (Warsaw: Yidish bukh, 1950); Sh. Kazdan, Fun kheyder un shkoles biz tsisho (From religious and secular primary schools to Tsisho) (Mexico City, 1956), p. 110.


YITSKHOK-DOV-BER MARKON (January 27, 1875-April 29, 1949)
            He was born in Rybinsk, Yaroslavl district, “Great Russia,” into a rabbinical family which descended from the Gaon of Vilna.  He received a thorough Jewish and a secular education.  In 1901 he graduated from the departments of Oriental Studies and law at St. Petersburg University.  He was later a bibliographer in the Hebrew division of the Imperial Public Library in St. Petersburg.  Over the years 1920-1922, he was a lecturer at Leningrad University, later a professor of Oriental Studies and ancient history at Minsk University.  He was well-known as an authority on the history of Karaism in Russia.  In 1926 he left Russia, lived for a short time in Riga, and then settled in Berlin where he lectured on ancient Jewish history at the Hildesheimer Rabbinical Seminary.  Over the years 1929-1933, he was head librarian of the Jewish community library in Hamburg.  In late 1938 he was expelled from the country and made his way to Holland.  He lived in Amsterdam until 1940, later in London.  From 1942 he was living in Ramsgate, England, where he lectured at the Montefiore Institute and served as editor of Yehudit (Judith).  He wrote for the Hebrew-language periodicals: Hamelits (The spectator), Hagan (The garden), Hazman (The times), Hatsfira (The siren), Haivri (The Jew), and Hakedem (The vineyard), among others; as well as in such Russian Jewish serials as: Voskhod (Sunrise), Budushchnost’ (Future), Razsvet (Dawn), Evreiskaia zhizn’ (Jewish life), and Evreiskaia starina (Jewish past).  In Yiddish he published articles on Jews in Crimea, portions of his history of Jews in Slavic lands, and on Jewish poetry of the Middle Ages in: Der yud (The Jew) in Cracow-Warsaw; Der fraynd (The friend) in St. Petersburg-Warsaw; Haynt (Today) in Warsaw; Petrograder togblat (Petrograd daily newspaper); and elsewhere; and in the years 1926-1928, in such serials as: Dos folk (The people) and Frimorgn (Morning) in Riga; and Parizer bleter (Parisian pages).  He was the author of books in Russian, Hebrew, German, and French.  He was co-editor of the Evreiskaia entsiklopediya (Jewish encyclopedia) (St. Petersburg), and he was a contributor to: Jüdisches Lexicon (Jewish Lexicon) (Berlin), Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums (Jewish history and scholarship monthly) (Breslau), Encyclopedia Judaica, and Eshkol entsiklopedye (Eshkol’s encyclopedia) (Berlin).  He was a contributor to Metsuda (Citadel) in London (1940-1949), in which, among other items, he published a historical series entitled “Midor ledor” (From generation to generation), as well as chapters from his work on the history of blood libels in Russia.  He wrote as well for: Di tsayt (The times) and Di idishe post (The Jewish mail) in London, among other serials.  He died in Ramsgate, near London.

Sources: Dr. Y. Helman, in Dos folk (Riga) (February 15, 1926); Jüdisches Lexicon (Berlin, 1930); Biblyografishe yorbikher fun yivo (Bibliographic yearbooks from YIVO) (Warsaw, 1928), see index; R. Brainin, in Tog (New York) (April 6, 1935); Y. Tiger, in Di tsayt (London) (March 31, 1949); Sh. A. Tiktin, in Hadoar (New York) (June 17, 1949); Y. H. Lev, in Frayland (Paris) 9 (1954); Entsiklopediya kelalit masada (Masada general encyclopedia) (Jerusalem, 1958/1959).
Khayim Leyl Fuks


ARN MARKON (b. 1896)
            He was born in Dvinsk (Daugavpils), Latvia.  He was the nephew of Professor Y. D. Markovitsh.  He received a Jewish and a general education.  For a time he studied in Vilna, later in Riga.  He wrote articles on economic issues for the Riga-based, Russian-language daily newspaper Sevodnya (Today).  In 1922 he switched to Yiddish and served as a member of the editorial board of Frimorgn (Morning) in Riga.  He contributed to Idishe shtime (Jewish voice) in Kovno.  He also used such pen names as Sanin and Ben-Mortkhe.  He was killed under Nazi rule.

Sources: M. Gerts, 25 yor yidishe prese in letland (25 years of the Yiddish press in Latvia) (Riga, 1933), p. 40; Yahadut latviya (Judaism in Latvia) (Tel Aviv, 1953), see index; information from his relatives in New York and Pittsburgh.
Khayim Leyb Fuks


            He came from Lithuania.  In 1910 he was a cantor in Jewish Belleville in Paris.  He was the author of: Aforizmen (Aphorisms), from the Talmud and midrashim (Paris, 1914), 32 pp.; Harmonye fun der natur un ihre gezetse, poeme in ferzen (Harmony in nature and its laws, a poem in verse) (Paris, 1917), 31 pp.

Source: Information from M. Bereznyak in Paris.
Khayim Leyb Fuks

Friday 18 August 2017


            He was born in Mogelnitse (Mogielnica), Poland.  He came to the United States in 1905.  He graduated from public school, and later studied for two years at Manual Trading High School and became a lithographer.  He studied in the evening in the drawing department at Cooper Union Art School and he debuted with a drawing in Der groyser kundes (The great prankster), edited by Yankev Marinov.  He was hired in 1914 by Tog (Day) as a theater reporter.  He drew theater caricatures for the newspaper.  He was the author and translator of theatrical ditties.  He also published several humorous sketches in Di idishe bekers shtime (Voice of the Jewish bakers).  He wrote songs for a variety of operettas.  He did drawings for calendars and frontispieces of Yiddish books, also for the front page of the third volume of Leksikon fun yidishn teater (Handbook of the Yiddish theater).  In 1950 he published Dray mogelnitser (Three Mogelnitsers) (New York), 144 pp. in Yiddish and 32 pp. in English—a description of immigrants’ lives in the past, with a preface by Zalmen Zilbertsvayg.

Source: Zalmen Zilbertsvayg, Leksikon fun yidishn teater (Handbook of the Yiddish theater), vol. 3 (New York, 1959), pp. 2215-17.
Yankev Kahan


            He was born in Fastov (Fastiv), Kiev district, Ukraine.  He studied at Kiev University and graduated as a medical doctor.  He translated a series of works into Yiddish, such as: Khaveyrim (Friends) by Maksim Gorky (Warsaw: Progres, 1902); Der koyekh fun finsternish (The power of darkness [original: Vlast' t'my]) by Lev Tolstoy (Warsaw: Bildung, 1904), which was subsequently performed on the Yiddish stage and in 1911 appeared in a new edition (Warsaw: Edelshtayn, 128 pp.); Avdotye un rivke, an ertseylung fun emigrantn lebn in amerike (Avdotya and Rebecca, a story of immigrant life in America) by Waldemar Bogoras (Minsk: Kultur, 1906), 72 pp.; Dos ayz geyt (Ice breaking [original: Ledokhod]) by David Ayzman (Minsk: Kultur, 1905), 39 pp.; Der onheyb fun der menshlikher kultur (The beginning of human culture), “compiled in Russian by Sh. Hirshberg and translated…by A. Markov” (Petrograd: Mefitse haskole, 1919), 243 pp.; Arifmetike (Arithmetic) (Kiev, 1918), 132 pp.  He also translated into Russian a number of stories by Avrom Reyzen.

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

[Additional information form: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 369.]


NATAN MARK (March 31, 1897-March 1988)
            He was born in the village of Strakhotshin (Strachocin), near Sanok, Galicia.  He studied with itinerant school teachers, in the synagogue study chamber, and in the Sanok yeshiva.  Even before his bar-mitzvah, he wrote a “rhymed chronology,” which he would read before Jewish families of several villages at the time of baking matzo on the eve of Passover in his father village home.  In 1917 he served in the Austrian army on the Italian front.  After WWI he stole across the border into Romania with the goal of making it to the land of Israel, though he remained in Romania where he studied and worked for many years as a Hebrew teacher in the Carpathian city of Piatra Neamt.  He debuted in print in 1925 with a poem in Arbeter-tsaytung (Workers’ newspaper) in Czernowitz.  He contributed work thereafter to: Tshernovitser bleter (Czernowitz pages), Hatsfira (The siren), and Unzer tsayt (Our time) in Kishinev; Yivo-bleter (Pages from YIVO) and Zeramim (Currents) in Vilna; Shures belts (Lines of Belz) in Bessarabia; Oyfgang (Arise) in Sighet-Marmației; Inzl (Island) in Bucharest; Getseltn (Tents), Bodn (Ground), Rama (Standard), and Bitsaron (Fortress) in New York; Vokhenblat (Weekly newspaper) in Toronto; Lodzer post (Lodz mail); Dos kind (The child) in Warsaw; and Dos vort (The word) in Kovno.  Until WWII he brought out in book form: Di leymene foist, mesholim, mesholim-balades, lider, skitsn (The clay fist: proverbs, ballads, songs, sketches) (Sighet: Oyfgang, 1937), 96 pp.; Dos likht in di oysyes (The light in the letters) (Bucharest, 1938), 48 pp., a legend concerning Bialik and a translation of Bialik’s poem “Yosemkeyt” (Orphanhood [original: “Yetomut”]).  After the war: Heatsil hamahapkhan (The revolutionary nobleman), “translation and evaluation” (Haifa, 1960), 80 pp.; Derhoybnkeyt (Exaltedness), “refinement, poems of prayer, and psalms” (Haifa, 1962), 192 pp.; Vos shvaygstu Yevtushenko? (What are you keeping silent for, Yevtushenko?) (Haifa: Renesans, 1967), 15 pp.; Yidish-literatur in rumenye fun ir onheyb biz 1968 (Yiddish literature in Romania from its beginning until 1968) (Haifa: Halevanon, 1971), 182 pp., Hebrew translation (1973); Nakht-koyles (Evening racket), fables, ballads, and parables (Haifa, 1976), 151 pp.  After WWII he placed work in Dos naye likht (The new light) and Folks-shtime (Voice of the people) in Warsaw.  In 1949 he received an award from the Romanian Ministry of Culture for a drama in manuscript: Der evidentsirter (The evidence man).  In 1957 he left Romania for Paris, and from he made aliya to the state of Israel in 1958.  From that point he published pedagogical articles, folklore, and poetry in: Unzer tsayt, Zamlungen (Anthologies), Yidishe kultur (Jewish culture), and the quarterly Or hamizra (Light of the East)—in New York; Yontef bleter (Holiday sheets) in Johannesburg; Yidishe tsaytung (Jewish newspaper), Eygns (One’s own), Haboker (This morning), Al hamishmar (On guard), Yisroel shtime (Voice of Israel), Davar leyeladim (Word for children), Hatsofe leyeladim (The spectator for children), Hapoel hatsair (The young worker), and Perakim (Chapters)—in Tel Aviv; and the yearbooks Hefa (Haifa).  He placed a longer work in Ḥakhmat yisrael bemaariv eropa (Jewish studies in Western Europe) (New York, 1963).  He also wrote in Romanian and German, and he translated from various languages.  Among his pseudonyms: Avi Avir-Tsiyon, Namar, Barukh Haba, Nakhmanke, N. Bar-Tilelon, and Note Strakhotshiner.  He died in Meravya, Israel.

Sources: B. Alkvit, in In zikh (New York) (February 1937); Mints, in Eygns (Ramat Gan) (June-July 1962); Viata noastra (Tel Aviv) (April 13, 1962); Dr. Shloyme Bikl, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (July 29, 1962); Y. Y. Cohen, “Yidishe drukn in transilvanye” (Yiddish publishing in Transylvania), Yivo-bleter (New York) (1962), p. 275.
Benyomen Elis

[Additional information form: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), cols. 368-69.]

Thursday 17 August 2017


MENDL MARK (April 6, 1900-November 20, 1974)
            He was born in Palonge (Palanga), formerly in Courland, later in Latvia.  He received a traditional Jewish education, later graduating from a Russian state high school.  For a time he was a student at St. Petersburg University.  He graduated from the state pedagogical curse of study in Latvia.  He was one of the founders, builders, and first teachers in the Yiddish secular schools in Latvia.  He served for a while as director of the pedagogical course in the school organization in Latvia.  He was chairman of central Jewish school organization of the teachers’ union (TSIL) in Latvia and a member of Jewish Education Council in the Latvian Ministry of Education.  Between the two world wars, he was active in the Jewish Folks-partey.  He wrote for the journals Der shtrom (The current) in Libave (Liepāja) and Yidishe shprakh (Yiddish language) in New York, and other serials, on matters that were related to the Jewish school and to the Yiddish language.  Over the years 1927-1929, he edited Naye vegn (New paths), a monthly put out by the Jewish school organization in Latvia.  He was co-editor of the youth publication Yugnt-blat (Youth newspaper) in 1934 and of the book Yidishe shul-bavegung in letland (The Jewish school movement in Latvia) (Riga, 1926), 210 pp.  From Russian into Yiddish, he translated Dr. B. Hertsfeld’s nook, Muter un kind, lernbukh far higyene fun der muter un kind (Mother and child, textbook on hygiene for the mother and child) (Riga, 1933), 192 pp.  Due to the fascist coup d’état of 1938 in Latvia, he moved to Canada, served in Montreal as principal of a Workmen’s Circle School, and then in 1945 moved to the United States and lived in New York.  He was a contributor to the Der groyser verterbukh fun der yidisher shprakh (The great dictionary of the Yiddish language) (New York: Book Committee, 1961-), 4 vols.  He died in Miami Beach, Florida.


MENDL MARK (1914-October 28, 1942)
            He was born in Cracow, western Galicia.  He received a strongly religious education.  He was active in the Orthodox movement in Cracow.  He contributed to the weekly newspaper Idishe shtime (Jewish voice) in Cracow (1931-1939).  He also placed work in Dos likht (The light) in Cracow and in Dos yidishe likht (The Jewish light) in Kolomaye, among other serials.  He was murdered by the Nazis on bloody October 28 in the Cracow ghetto.

Sources: Sefer kroke (Volume for Cracow) (Jerusalem, 1959); information from Moyshe Zigler in Jerusalem, and from L. Shteyn in New York.
Khayim Leyb Fuks


YANKEV-YUDE MARK (May 3, 1856-February 10, 1929)
            He was born in Palonge (Palanga), formerly in Courland, later in Latvia.  He studied in the Telz yeshiva, and as an adult he studied commerce in Germany.  He became a prominent Mizrachi leader.  He began his writing career in Hebrew for Hamagid (The preacher) in 1874, with correspondence pieces and articles, later contributing to: Hamelits (The spectator) in Odessa; Hatsfira (The siren) in Warsaw; Yidishes tageblat (Jewish daily newspaper) and Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal) in New York.  Through letters in Hebrew, Russian, and German, over the course of thirty-five years he ran a bookkeeping course.  In 1920 he immigrated to the United States.  In 1927 in New York, he published his only book, Gedoylim fun unzer tsayt, monografyes, kharakter-shtrikhn un zikhroynes (Great men of our time, monographs, character traits, and memoirs), 384 pp.  The volume consists of two parts: “Rabonim un manhigim” (Rabbis and leaders) and “Maskolim un askonim” (Followers of the Jewish Enlightenment and community leaders).  It was a sort of book of memoirs.  He personally knew the personalities about whom he wrote.  These included: Rabbi Yisroel Salanter, Rabbi Ḥaim Soloveichik, Rabbi Shmuel Mohilever, the Lubavitcher Rebbe, and twenty-two other rabbis and leaders.  Of the secular followers of the Enlightenment and community leaders, he included Mattityahu Strashun, Kalman Shulman, Baron Ginzburg, and twelve other personalities.  Mark initially published these works in separate articles in Yidishe tageblat.  In 1958, twenty-nine years after his death, and thirty-one years after its first Yiddish edition, his book was published in a Hebrew translation under the title, Bimehitsatam shel gedole hador, biografiyot, sipurim, imrot vesiḥot ḥolin shel gedole yisrael bador hakodem (In the presence of the greatest of the generation: biographies, narratives, sayings, and secular conversations of the great Jewish people of the previous generation) (Jerusalem: Goyl), 248 pp.  He died in New York.


YUDL (YUDEL) MARK (November 2, 1897-August 2, 1975)
            He was born in Palonge (Palanga), Lithuania.  Until 1911 he studied in the local Russian state school and Jewish subjects as well as Hebrew with private teachers, later in Cohen’s high school in Vilna.  Over the years 1915-1918, he studied in the historical-philology department in St. Petersburg University in the elite course of Baron Ginzburg.  He was student of Nokhum Shtif who influenced him to dedicate his studies to the Yiddish language, as well as to concur with the ideology of the Jewish Folks-partey.  He was secretary of the “student aid society” and founder of a folkish student group, while at the same time active in the “Khevre mefitse haskole” (Society for the promotion of enlightenment [among the Jews of Russia]) and in the office of the central committee of the all-Russian Jewish Folks-partey.  In late 1918 he settled in Libave (Liepāja), Latvia, where he served as representative of the Jewish Folks-partey in the municipal administration and in the provisional Latvian parliament.  He worked as a Yiddish teacher, 1919-1920, in the junior high school in Shkud (Skuodas), and he later (with interruptions) until 1924 lived in Vilkomir (Ukmergė), Lithuania.  He was the founder of the Vilkomir Jewish Senior High School (the first in Lithuania) and its teacher of Yiddish and Russian.  Together with Yoysef Tshernikhov, in 1922 he directed the election campaign of the Folks-partey for the Lithuanian parliament.  He served as general secretary of the Jewish National Council.  He was a teacher of Yiddish and Yiddish literature, 1927-1930, at the Riga municipal Jewish high school and a teacher of Yiddish in the state Jewish teachers’ course of study.  He later worked as a teacher in the Kovno commercial high school.  He was a contributor to YIVO (Yiddish Scientific Institute) and from 1929 a member of its executive bureau.  He came to the United States for the first time in 1934 and for the second time in 1936.  At that point he was active in the educational, philological, literary, and social life in America.  He worked as a teacher in a Jewish middle school and in the pedagogical course at Workmen’s Circle.  From 1941 he was a consultant to Jewish schools for the Jewish Education Committee in New York.  He was also vice-president of the Council for Jewish Education.  His writing activities began with the daily newspaper Nayes (News) in Kovno (1921), edited by Dr. A. Mukdoni, and it appeared as a weekly from June 1922 until the end of 1923 under the editorship of Mark and Y. Tshernikhov; in the period 1926-mid-1927, it was edited by Mark and Ozer Finkelshteyn.  He was a contributor, 1923-1924, to Dr. Chaim Zhitlovsky’s monthly journal Dos naye leben (The new life).  He also placed work in: the anthology Der veg tsu der yidisher visnshaft (The path to Jewish scholarship) (Kovno, 1926); Dos folk (The people) and Frimorgn (Morning) in Riga; Vilner tog (Vilna day), Yidish far ale (Yiddish for everyone), and Di naye shul (The new school)—in Vilna; Shul-vegn (School ways) in Warsaw; Dorem-amerike (South America) in Buenos Aires; and the like.  He was editor-in-chief, 1930-1934, of Folks-blat (People’s newspaper) in Kovno, in which, in addition to articles on a variety of topics, he published serially novels translated from German: Erich Maria Remarque, Afn mayrev-front keyn nayes (All Quiet on the Western Front [original: Im Westen nichts Neues]); and Artur Landsberger, Berlin on yidn (Berlin without Jews [original: Berlin ohne Juden]).[1]  From early 1930 until his arrival in the United States, he served as the Lithuanian correspondent for New York’s Forverts (Forward), using the pen name Dr. Shteynbakh, “Briv fun lite” (Letter from Lithuania).  Once in America (from 1936), he wrote for: Tsukunft (Future), Forverts, Unzer shul (Our school), Kultur un dertsiung (Culture and education), Afn shvel (At the threshold), Idisher kemfer (Jewish fighter), Yidishe dertsiung (Jewish education), Proletarishe velt (Proletarian world), Unzer veg (Our oath), and Kinder-tsaytung (Children’s newspaper)—in New York.  He was a contributor (from 1930) to Yivo-bleter (Pages from YIVO) in Vilna and later New York, for which he wrote dozens of pieces on linguistic issues.  He edited the YIVO journal Yidishe shprakh (Yiddish language), in which, among other items, he published an essay on Mendl Lefin-Satanover, as well as his experiment at a Yiddish translation of Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address.”  In the Zamlbukh lekoved dem tsveyhundert un fuftsikstn yoyvl fun der yidisher prese, 1686-1936 (Anthology in honor of the 250th jubilee of the Yiddish press, 1686-1936), ed. Dr. Y. Shatski (New York, 1937), he wrote a piece entitled “Yidishe peryodishe oysgabes in lite” (Yiddish periodical publications in Lithuania) (pp. 250-98); and for Lite (Lithuania) anthology, vol. 1 (New York, 1951), he penned “Unzer litvisher yidish” (Our Lithuanian Yiddish) (pp. 429-72).  He wrote the introduction and compiled the material for Dr khayim zhitlovski, geklibene verk (Dr. Chaim Zhitlovsky, selected works) (New York, 1955), 422 pp., which was published by the “Stein Library” of the World Jewish Culture Congress.  He penned the “Heores un bamerkungen” (Notes and observations) to vol. 8 of Shimen Dubnov’s Velt-geshikhte fun yidishn folk (World history of the Jewish people) (Buenos Aires, 1955).  For the Shmuel niger-bukh (Volume for Shmuel Niger) (New York: YIVO, 1958), pp. 127-57, he wrote: “Yidish-hebreishe un hebreish-yidishe nay-shafungen” (New Yiddish-Hebrew and Hebrew-Yiddish creations).  He also contributed to: the Yiddish-Hebrew Yorbikher (Yearbooks) of the book council in New York; Jewish Education; and Finkelstein’s The Jews.  In the Encyclopedia of Literature (New York, 1947), he published portions of a longer “history of Yiddish literature.”  He edited: Pedagogisher buleten (Pedagogical bulletin) in New York (from 1941); Pinkes byalistok (Records of Bialystok), vol. 1 (New York, 1949), vol. 2 (New York, 1950); and the two-volume Yorbukh fun amopteyl fun yivo (Annual from the American branch of YIVO) (New York, 1939), with Leybush Lehrer.  He was co-editor with Professor Yude A. Yofe of Der groyser verterbukh fun der yidisher shprakh (The great dictionary of the Yiddish language) (New York: Book Committee, 1961-), 4 vols.  His books include: Shul-gramatik, in bayshpil un oyfgabes (School grammar, with examples and exercises) (Kovno: Likht, 1921), 124 pp., second edition (Kovno: Likht, 1923), 144 pp.; Eynheytlekhe folkshul, avtonomye in shul, unzere rikhtungen, di eynheytlekhe shul (Uniform people’s school, autonomy in school, our direction, the uniform school) (Kovno: Likht, 1922), 119 pp.; Program far yidish, shprakh un literatur, far pedagogishe kursn, far lerer-seminarn, far lerer-ekzamens (Program for Yiddish, language and literature, for pedagogical courses, for teachers’ seminars, for teachers’ examinations) (Riga, 1928), 32 pp., with Y. Kharlash; Ale mames zaynen sheyn (All mothers are beautiful) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1937), 48 pp., with M. Y. Berditshevski (Berdichevsky); Proyekt fun program far yidish in der elementar-shul (Project for a program in Yiddish in the elementary school) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1939), 81 pp.; Arbetsbukh far yidish in mitlshul (Workbook for Yiddish in middle school) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1939), 106 pp., part 2 (1940), 35 pp., second, improved edition (1941), 207 pp.; Gut yontef (Happy holidays), stories of the holidays for children (Hanukkah, Purim, Passover, Scroll of Ruth) (New York, 1940); Di geshikhte fun der yidisher literatur, konspekt (The history of Yiddish literature, synopsis) (New York, 1943), 54 pp.; Der vokabular farn onheyber-klas in der amerikaner yidisher shul (The vocabulary for the beginning class in the Yiddish school in America) (New York: YIVO, 1944), 78 pp., with Y. Steinbaum and David Bridger; Khumesh far kinder, loyt yehoyesh (Pentateuch for children, following Yehoash) (New York: Matones, 1944), 270 pp.  Of his stories about historical Jewish figures, he published in Kinder-tsaytung: Rabeynu gershom, rashi, yude khosed (Rabbenu Gershom, Rashi, Judah the Pious) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1941), 32 pp.; Dovid haruveyni un shloyme molkho (David Hareuveni and Solomon Molkho) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1941), 98 pp.; Der yidisher poypst (The Jewish pope) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1947), 125 pp., with drawings by Y. Likhtenshteyn; Der rambam (The Rambam [Moses Maimonides]) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1947), 56 pp.—all of these with the addition of stories about “Rabbi Meir of Rothenburg,” “Moshe ben Ḥanokh,” “Ḥasdai ibn Shaprut,” “Rabbi Shmuel ha-Nagid,” “Rabbenu Baḥya ibn Paquda,” “Moshe ibn Ezra,” “Solomon ibn Gabirol,” “Rabbi Yehuda Halevi,” “Avraham ibn Ezra,” “Der Ramban [Naḥmanides],” and a longer story about the “Binding of Isaac” were included in Historishe geshtaltn (Historical personalities) (Buenos Aires, 1957), 166 pp.; Tsvey referatn (Two talks)—“Di shlikhes fun der yidisher shul” (Tasks for the Yiddish school) and “Afn shvel fun fertn yorhundert in amerike” (On the threshold of the fourth century in America)—(New York: Y. Kaminski, 1954), 31 pp.; Yidishe kinder, leyenbukh farn tsveytn lernyor (Jewish children, textbook for the second school year) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1955), 224 pp., with Zalmen Yefroykin; Heft far yidish (Notebook for Yiddish) (New York, 1957); Arbetsbukh tsu yidishe ḳinder 1, mit muzik tsu di lider in leyenbukh (Workbook for Jewish children I, with music accompanying the poems in the textbook) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1959), 80 pp.; Yidish far shul and heym (Yiddish for school and home) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1961), 25 pp. in Yiddish and 24 pp. in English; Shimen dubnov (Shimon Dubnow) (New York: Workmen’s Circle, 1962), 78 pp.; Avrom sutskevers poetisher veg (Avraham Sutzkever’s poetic path) (Tel Aviv: Perets Publ., 1974), 176 pp.; Gramatik fun der yidisher klal-shprakh (Grammar of the standard Yiddish language) (New York: Congress for Jewish Culture, 1978), xii + 394 pp.  From German he translated: V. Hodan (?), Yingl oder meydl (Boy or girl), “friendly chats on the issue of gender” (Riga, 1929), 168 pp.; Thomas Mann, Tonyo kreger (Tomio Krüger), with a preface on Thomas Mann and his work (Riga: Bikher far alemen, 1930), 189 pp.  He also used such pen names as: M. Rekhtman, M. Mirkin, Y. Feyges, L. Zamt, and Dr. Shteynbakh.  He visited the state of Israel in 1947 and 1958, South Africa in 1958, and Argentina in 1963.  He died in Los Angeles. 
            Mark’s wife, FEYGL MARK, was born in 1912 in Tsoyzmer (Sandomierz), Poland.  She published stories in Kinder-tsaytung and a series of articles on painting in Idisher kemfer in New York.  She worked as a teacher of Yiddish in the New School for Social Research in New York.  Their son, EMANUEL MARK, published poems in Tsukunft.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2, with a bibliography; M. Anilovitsh and M. Yofe, Shriftn far psikhologye un pedagogik (Writings on psychology and pedagogy) 1 (Vilna: YIVO, 1933), pp. 481, 526; M. Vizhnitski (M. Shtarkman), in Tog (New York) (January 11, 1935); Dr. A. Mukdoni, in Morgn-zhurnal (New York) (January 16, 1935); Mukdoni, in Lite (Lithuania) anthology, vol. 1 (New York, 1951), p. 1094; Y. Sh. Prenovits, in Forverts (New York) (January 15, 1935); B. Ts. Goldberg, in Tog (January 17, 1935); N. Y. Gotlib, in Lite, p. 1108; Yivo-biblyografye (YIVO bibliography), part 1, 1925-1941 (New York, 1943), part 2, 1942-1950 (New York, 1950), see indexes; Shmuel Niger, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (January 15, 1953; October 23, 1955); Der Lebediker, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (May 13, 1956); Y. Botoshanski, in Di prese (Buenos Aires) (September 5, 1957); Zalmen Yefroykin, in Kultur un dertsiung (New York) (October 1957); Yefroykin and Y. Levin-Shatskes, Kultur un dertsiung (October 1959); Elye Shulman, in Der veker (New York) (March 1, 1958); D. Segal (Bashevis), in Forverts (New York) (March 8, 1959; January 21, 1962); Arn Tsaytlin, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (September 4, 1959; February 9, 1962); T. Bernshteyn, in Kultur un dertsiung (October 1959); Yankev Glatshteyn, in Tsukunft (New York) (January 1960); B. Shefner, in Forverts (December 30, 1961); Y. Shteynboym, in Tsukunft (December 1961); A. Oyerbakh, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (January 21, 1962); Leybush Lehrer, in Idisher kemfer (February 2, 1962); A. Glants-Leyeles, in Unzer tsayt (New York) (March-April 1962); M. V. Bernshteyn, in Der veker (July 1962); Biblyografye fun yidishe bikher vegn khurbn un gvure (Bibliography of Yiddish books concerning the Holocaust and heroism) (New York, 1962), see index; Y. Yeshurin, in jubilee issue of Tsukunft (November-December 1962); L. Amnon, in Kinder zhurnal (New York) (February 1963); G. Vayner, in Jewish Book Annual XX (1962-1963)/
Khayim Leyb Fuks

[Additional information form: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 368.]

[1] Translator’s note. The text gives “Sam. Graneman” as the author of this well-known novel, but I believe that it should be “Artur Landsberger.” (JAF)

Wednesday 16 August 2017


BER MARK (June 8, 1908-August 4, 1966)
            The brother of Arn Mark, he was born in Lomzhe, Russian Poland.  He was the son of a Mizrachi activist, Tsvi-Hirsh Mark.  He attended a Hebrew school and a Polish Jewish high school.  Over the years 1927-1931, he studied to be a lawyer at Warsaw University.  For a time he worked as a teacher in private Jewish high schools in Warsaw.  He then made the move to become a journalist.  From his student years, he was active in the illegal Communist movement.  He was a member of the administration, 1936-1939, of the Jewish literary writers’ and journalists’ association (13 Tłomackie St.) in Warsaw.  When the Germans invaded Poland in September 1939, he took part in the defense of Warsaw, while at the same time assisting in publishing the last issues of Der moment (The moment), for which he was a regular contributor.  In November 1939 he fled to Bialystok.  He was a scholarly contributor, 1940-1941, to the revived Jewish section of the Byelorussian Academy of Sciences.  Following the German invasion of Soviet Russia in June 1941, he fled deep into Russia, lived on a collective farm in Novouzensk, and later (until the winter of 1943) in Kuybyshev [now, Samara], where he took part in the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee.  After that he was in Moscow until January 1946.  He was vice-chair of the organized committee of Polish Jews and the organizer of relief work on behalf of Jewish refugees—especially on behalf of Jewish writer-refugees.  From 1946 he was back in Poland, initially in Lodz, later in Warsaw.  He was a member of the presidium of the central committee of Polish Jewry and chairman of the Jewish literary association.  From 1949 he was director of the Jewish Historical Institute in Warsaw.  From 1954 he was professor of history at Warsaw University and member of the Polish Academy of Sciences.  That year he received a medal from the Polish government for his labors in postwar Poland.  In 1957 he spoke (in Yiddish) on the Jewish resistance to the Nazis—at the second congress of Jewish scholars in Jerusalem—and on the role played by the Jewish proletariat in the Revolution of 1905—at the Hebrew University.  He was then received by Histadrut and the local press, and he openly asked that people forgive him for “misunderstandings—we were misled”; he then expressed enthusiasm for the accomplishments of the Jewish state (Y. Rimun, in Keneder odler [Canadian eagle] in Montreal, March 12, 1957).  Mark began his literary activities with articles on Yiddish literature in Dos naye lebn (The new life), edited by Peysekh Kaplan, in Bialystok (1926), and from that point in time he contributed to a large number of Jewish and non-Jewish publications throughout the world.  He was co-editor of almost all Yiddish and Polish legal and illegal Communist publications in Poland until 1939.  He was also an internal contributor and, from 1936 to 1939, night editor of the daily newspaper Der moment; a regular contributor to Literarishe bleter (Literary leaves), co-editor 1938-1939, and to Shriftn (Writings), 1936-1939, as well as other serials in Warsaw.  He edited a number of books for the publisher “Mark Rakovski” in Warsaw and “Tomor” in Vilna.  In Soviet Russia, he published in: Byalistoker shtern (Bialystok star), Der shtern (The star), and Oktyabr (October) in Minsk; in an anti-Nazi collection, Dos blut ruft tsu nekome, vos gelitene dertseyln vegn fashishtishe akhzoryes inem okupirtn poyln (Blood calls for revenge, what the victims recount against fascist atrocities in occupied Poland) (Moscow: Der emes, 1941); and the anthologies: Sovetish (Soviet), Tsum zig (To victory), and Eynikeyt (Unity), among others, in Moscow.  From 1946 he placed work in: Dos naye lebn in Lodz-Warsaw (1946-1951), for which he was also editor-in-chief; Yidishe shriftn (Yiddish writings) (1946-1962), among other items, he wrote here a great number of literary critical essays; Folks-shtime (Voice of the people) in Lodz-Warsaw (1946-1962; Bleter far geshikhte (Pages for history) in Warsaw; from 1948 the Polish-language Biuletyn (Bulletin) for the Jewish Historical Institute, for which he also served as editor; Frayhayt (Freedom), Yidishe kultur (Jewish culture), Eynikeyt, Poylishe id (Polish Jew), and Zamlungen (Anthologies), among others, in New York; Fray yisroel (Free Israel), Yisroel shtime (Voice of Israel), Letste nayes (Latest news), Al hamishmar (On guard), and Lemerḥav (Into the open), among others, in the state of Israel; Naye prese (New press), Parizer shriftn (Parisian writings), and Parizer tsaytshrift (Parisian periodical), among others, in Paris; Haynt (Today), Ikuf-bleter (Pages from IKUF), Argentiner landsmanshaftn (Argentinian native-place associations), Byalistoker vegn (Bialystok ways), and Undzer lodz (Our Lodz), among others, in Buenos Aires.  In Pinkes varshe (Records of Warsaw) (Buenos Aires, 1955), cols. 913-1054, he published new material on the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.  He edited a series of books for “Yidish-bukh” in Warsaw (1953-1962), the literary collection Tsvishn lebn un toyt, literarishe shafungen in di getos un lagern (Between life and death, literary creations in the ghettos and concentration camps) (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1955), 148 pp., and the poetry collection of young murdered poets, Dos lid in geto (The poem in the ghetto) (Warsaw, 1962), among other such works.
            In book form he published, in Yiddish: Geshikhte fun der poylisher arbeter-bavegung (History of the Polish labor movement) (Warsaw, 1936), published in booklets of 64 pp., altogether 260 pp. (confiscated by the governmental authorities); Geshikhte fun sotsyale bavegungen in poyln (History of social movement in Poland), vol. 1 (Vilna: Mitlalter, 1938), 294 pp., vol. 2 (Vilna, Naytsayt, 1939), 437 pp.; Der oyfshtand in varshever geto (The uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto) (Moscow, 1947), 217 pp.; Dos bukh fun gvure (The book of valor), vol. 1 “Oyfshtand fun varshever geto” (Warsaw Ghetto uprising) (Lodz, 1947), 391 pp. + 7 pp., with illustrations (published in various editions in Hebrew, Polish, and other languages—and in Yiddish an enlarged edition appeared in Warsaw in 1955, 436 pp., with a chronology of the most important events of the uprising and in the resistance); Afn keyver fun tsvi-hirsh grets, esey (At the grave of Zvi-Hirsch Graetz, an essay) (Wrocław, 1948), 24 pp.; Di yidishe tragedye in der poylisher literatur (The Jewish tragedy in Polish literature) (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1950), 157 pp.; Der oyfshtand in byalistoker geto (The resistance in the Bialystok ghetto) (Warsaw: Jewish Historical Institute, 1950), 509 pp., second edition (Buenos Aires: Aykop, 1953), 522 pp.; Viktor hugo, tsum hundert un fuftsiktn yortog fun zayn geboyrn (Victor Hugo, on the 150th anniversary of his birth) (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1952), 62 pp., with illustrations; Dokumentn un materialn vegn oyfshtand in varshever geto (Documents and materials on the resistance in the Warsaw Ghetto) (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1953), 404 pp.; Di umgekumene shrayber fun di getos un lagern (The murdered writers from the ghettos and camps) (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1954), 224 pp.; Adam mitskevitsh un di yidn (Adam Mickiewicz and the Jews) (Warsaw, 1955), 101 pp.; with Sz. Zacharjasz, P. P. R. in kamf un boy, tsum tsentn yortog fun der antshteyung fun der poylisher arbeter-partey (The P.P.R. in struggle and building, on the tenth anniversary of the rise of the Polish Workers’ Party) (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1955), 309 pp. + 5 pp.; Di geshikhte fun yidn in poyln (The history of Jews in Poland), vol. 1 (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1957), 460 pp., vol. 2 (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1957), 460 pp., and prepared for publication, vol. 3 “Di yidn in poyln biz der tsveyter velt-milkhome” (The Jews in Poland until WWII), and vol. 4 “Di okupatsye-tsayt un der goyrl fun der sheyres-hapleyte” (The occupation period and the fate of the survivors); Di yidishe vidershtendlekhe yugnt-grupe in daytshland fun b. boym (The Jewish resistance youth group in Germany of B. Baum) (Warsaw, 1961), 48 pp.; Megiles oyshvits (The scroll of Auschwitz) (Tel Aviv: Yisroel-bukh, 1977), 464 pp.  In Polish: Ruch oporu w getcie bialostockim (Resistance movement in the Bialystok ghetto) (Warsaw: Jewish Historical Institute, 1952), 283 pp.; Powstanie w getcie warszawskim na tle ruchu oporu w Polsce, geneza i przebieg (Uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto against the backdrop of resistance in Poland, genesis and course) (Warsaw: Jewish Historical Institute, 1953), 390 pp., second edition (1954); Rzemieślnicy żydowscy w Polsce feudalnej (Jewish artisans in feudal Poland) (Warsaw, 1954); Proletariat żydowski w Rewolucji 1905 roku (The Jewish proletariat in the 1905 Revolution) (Warsaw, 1956); Wybór opowiadań (Selection of stories [by Yitskhok Leyb Perets]) (Wrocław-Krakow, 1958), 364 pp.; Szołem-Ałejchem, 1859-1916, epoka, życie i dzieła (Sholem-Aleykhem, 1859-1916, era, life, and works) (Warsaw: Yidish-bukh, 1959), 70 pp.; Walka i zagłada warszawskiego getta (The fighting and destruction of the Warsaw Ghetto) (Warsaw, 1959), 507 pp.; “Literarishe Tribune i Tlomackie 13” (Literary tribune and 13 Tlomackie St.), in Księdze Wspomnień (Book of memoirs) (Warsaw, 1960); Grupa Bauma, z dziejów walki antyfaszystowskiej młodzieży żydowskiej w Niemczech w latach 1937-1942 (The Baum Group: From the history of anti-fascist struggle of Jewish youth in Germany in the years, 1937-1942) (Warsaw, 1960), 45 pp.; Życie i walka młodzieży w gettach, w okresie okupacji hitlerowskiej, 1939-1944 (The life and struggle of the youth in the ghettos, during the Nazi occupation, 1939-1944) (Warsaw: Iskry, 1961), 96 pp.  In Hebrew: Ḥurban u-mered yehude polin betekufat hakibush hahitleri (Destruction and rebellion of Polish Jewry during the Hitler’s occupation) (Warsaw: Jewish Historical Institute, 1955), 22 pp.; Baayot ḥaker tenuat hamri (Problems in the study of the resistance movement) (Jerusalem, 1957).  Translations of his works into English include: The Report of Jürgen Stroop: Concerning the Uprising in the Ghetto of Warsaw and the Liquidation of the Jewish Residential Area (Warsaw: Jewish Historical Institute, 1958), 123 pp.  Into French: his writings on the uprisings in the Warsaw and Bialystok ghettos, such as L’Insurrection du ghetto de Varsovie, trans. Rose Huriaud, adapted by Jean Noaro (Paris, Éditions sociales, 1955), 239 pp.; into Spanish (Buenos Aires, 1956); into Czech (Prague, 1958); and into Portuguese (Rio de Janeiro, 1960).  He translated from Polish into Yiddish: Dr. Emanuel Ringelblum, Di poylish-yidishe batsiungen in der tsayt fun der tsveyter velt-milkhome (Polish-Jewish relations at the time of WWII) (Warsaw, 1960); and with Ayzenbakh et al., he prepared the annotations to Geto-ksovim fun em. ringelblum (Ghetto writings of E. Ringelblum) (Warsaw, 1960).  He also published under such pseudonyms as: B. Aronski, B. Markus, Berl Aronovitsh, M. Kovalski, B. Aronovitsh, Arkhivaryus, Mittsin, and Shmuel Rozen.  He died in Warsaw.

Sources: N. Mirer, in Foroys (Warsaw) (April 29, 1938); V. Erlikh, in Foroys (May 26, 1939; June 23, 1939); Itzik Fefer, in Eynikeyt (Moscow) (February 7, 1932); Avrom Reyzen, in Di feder (New York) (1949), pp. 187-88; B. Y. Byalostotski, in Yorbukh tsh”t (1948/1949 yearbook) (New York, 1949); H. Vaynroykh, Blut af der zun (Blood on the sun) (New York, 1950), p. 90; Dr. F. Fridman, in Yorbukh tshy”a (1950/1951 yearbook) (New York, 1951); Fridman, in Tsukunft (New York) (April 1954); M. Mirski, in Yidishe shriftn (Warsaw) (December 1950); D. Sfard, in Yidishe shriftn (January 1, 1951; December 1953; April 1954); Sfard, Shrayber un bikher (Writers and books) (Warsaw, 1951), pp. 92-97; Sfard, Shtudyes un skitsn (Studies and sketches) (Warsaw, 1955); L. Zhitnitski, in Di prese (Buenos Aires) (April 24, 1954); Yankev Leshtshinski, in Forverts (New York) (June 7, 1954); B. Kutsher, Geven amol varshe (As Warsaw once was) (Paris, 1955), see index; M. Tsanin, in Forverts (July 4, 1955); Khayim Leyb Fuks, in Fun noentn over (New York) 3 (1957); Y. Rimun, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (March 12, 1957); Y. Emyot, in Folks-shtime (Warsaw) (October 18-19, 1957); N. Mayzil, in Yidishe kultur (New York) (August-September 1958); B. Ts. Goldberg, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (May 17, 1959); Yankev Glatshteyn, In tokh genumen (In essence), vol. 2 (Buenos Aires, 1960), pp. 37-39; Sh. L. Shnayderman, in Forverts (February 26, 1960); Yonas Turkov, in Tsukunft (October 1961); Kh. Ayatli, in Idisher kemfer (New York) (January 5, 1962); Biblyografye fun yidishe bikher vegn khurbn un gvure (Bibliography of Yiddish books concerning the Holocaust and heroism) (New York, 1962), see index; M. Vaykhert, Yidishe aleynhilf (Jewish self-help) (Tel Aviv, 1962).
Khayim Leyb Fuks

[Additional information form: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 368.]

Tuesday 15 August 2017


ARN MARK (October 6, 1904-December 11, 1938)
            The brother of Berl Mark, he was born in Lomzhe, Russian Poland.  He came from a family of distinguished scholars.  His education began in a “cheder metukan” (improved religious elementary school), where he studied Hebrew, Tanakh, and a bit of Talmud.  At age ten he moved on to a yeshiva in Bialystok, where his parents had settled, and at the same time he prepared for entrance into high school.  A year later he returned to Lomzhe, entered a Polish high school, and after graduating in 1922 he studied Slavic languages and literatures at Warsaw University.  He was active in the Jewish labor movement.  He worked as a teacher, 1924-1925, in a high school in Bialystok, and from 1927-1928 he became a teacher of Yiddish and literature in the Vilna senior high school.  While still in high school, he contributed work to various youth writings.  In 1921 he was the copublisher of several issues of the newspaper Der hamer (The hammer) in Lomzhe.  In 1923 he placed poems in the anthology Tayfun (Typhoon).  In 1924 he began to contribute to Unzer lebn (Our life) in Bialystok, in which he published articles on literature and writers (among them: Max Brod, H. Leivick, H. Royzenblat, Z. Segalovitsh, A. Ernburg, and Y. Tuvim, among others), as well as stories and poetry.  From time to time he wrote articles on literary topics also for Vilner tog (Vilna day) and for Warsaw’s Folks-tsaytung (People’s newspaper), and many articles for Literarishe bleter (Literary leaves) in Warsaw and other publications.  He also wrote for Zay gezunt (Be well) and Folks-gezunt (People’s health).  He wrote essays and treatments on: Y. Opatoshu, A. Raboy, Falk Halpern, Kalmen Lis, Yankev Shternberg, Arn Tsaytlin, Ber Horovits, and Elkhonen Vogler, among others.  He translated into Yiddish: the ten-volume Jean-Christophe (as Zhan-kristof) by Romain Rolland (Warsaw, 1927); Di froy fun draysik yor (The woman age thirty [original: La fame de trente ans]) by Honoré de Balzac; Di farshtoysene (Les Misérables) by Victor Hugo; Di misteryen (The mysteries [original: Misterier]) and Shtot zegelfas (Segelfoss city [original: Segelfoss by]) by Knut Hamsun; poems by Baudelaire, Verlaine, and Krasinski, among others; and Bronks ekspres (Bronx express) [?] by Osip Dymov; among others.  He also published A fulshtendik poylish-yidish verterbukh (A complete Polish-Yiddish dictionary) (Warsaw: Aḥisefer, 1920), 1908 cols; and he adapted a series of works by Mendele, Sholem-Aleykhem, Perets, and Leivick for school youth.  He worked intensively with the art magazine Di vokh (The week) and with the scholarly journal Etyudn (Studies) of which he was also co-editor.  He left in manuscript treatments of: H. Leivick, M. L. Halpern, Kadia Molodowsky, A. Lutski, Itzik Manger, M. Kulbak, Izzy Kharik, and others; writings on Perets as a playwright and Perets as the “Don Juan of ideas”; on Shakespeare’s Othello; “Fun kabtsansk biz kapulye” (From Kabtsansk to Kapulye), a longer work on Mendele; “Biz der tog vet oyfgeyn” (Until the day dawns), a work about Mani Leib; “Af naye relsn” (On new rails), considerations of the role of the writer, a series of ten chapters; and more.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2; Vilner tog (December 12, 1938); Sh. Zaromb, in Literarishe bleter (Warsaw) (December 16, 1938); L. Turbovitsh, in Foroys (Warsaw) (January 6, 1939); A. Morevski, in Vilner tog (January 15, 1939); E. Y. Goldshmidt, in Di tsayt (Vilna) (January 16, 1939); Dos naye lebn (Bialystok) 111 (380) (1948); Shmerke katsherginski ondenk-bukh (Shmerke Katsherginski remembrance volume) (Buenos Aires, 1956); Meylekh Ravitsh, Mayn leksikon (My lexicon), vol. 2 (Montreal, 1945); Lomzhe anthology (New York, 1957).
Mortkhe Yofe


PEYSEKH MAREK (March 24, 1862-March 1920)
            He was born in Shadeve (Shadov), Kovno district, Lithuania.  He was the son of a Hebrew teacher and follower of the Jewish Enlightenment who published a lengthy poem in Hashaḥar (The dawn).  He graduated from the law faculty of Moscow University.  He was cofounder of the Moscow association “Bene-tsiyon” (Children of Zion).  He worked as a bookkeeper in a soap factory and in his free time carried out research in the field of Jewish cultural history.  He debuted in print with a piece on the history of Jewish publishers in Russia in the Russian Jewish serial Voskhod (Sunrise) in 1888.  Together with Shoyel Ginzburg, he published the monumental work Di yidishe folkslider in rusland (Jewish folksongs in Russia).  On an assignment for “Khevre mefitse haskole” (Society for the promotion of enlightenment [among the Jews of Russia]), he visited the Jewish Pale of Settlement and collected a wealth of material on popular Jewish education and Jewish history generally, and reworked some of it in his Russian-language work, Ocherki po istorii prosvi︠eshcheniia evreev v Rossii (Studies in the history of Jewish education in Russia) (Moscow, 1909), 288 pp., which concerned the era from 1844 to 1873.  He also published historical articles in Evreiskaia starina (The Jewish past), Perezhitoie (The past), and elsewhere.  At his initiative the Moscow publisher Mir (World) began to publish a large-scale Jewish history and monographs by various scholars.  He devoted an especial degree of attention to work on the “Vaad arba aratsot” (Council of Four Lands) and put together a special map of the Jewish communities that were part of one or another council.  WWI disrupted his work on the first volume.  After the October Revolution, he completely abandoned scholarly work, and due to hunger he moved to Volsk (Vol’sk), Saratov district, where he picked up and continued reworking his material.  In Russian he wrote a work on the history of the Jewish intelligentsia, the rise of Hassidism, and the religious struggle in the eighteenth century, but it remained unpublished.  In his bequest were also discovered several poems in Yiddish, among them a poem entitled “Di letste minutn fun besht” (The last minutes of the Besht [Bal-Shem-Tov]), which he wrote just before his death, and a Yiddish lullaby.  He died in Saratov.  After his death, a Marek Committee was established in Moscow to translate and publish his works in Yiddish and Hebrew.  Of his stories in Yiddish that he published in Fraynd (Friend), he brought out in book form: Tsvey gezeyres (Two evil decrees), from the era of Catherine II (St. Petersburg, 1908), in connection with the false accusation levelled by Catherine’s favorite Semyon Zorich about fake bank notes.  In the story he describes the lifestyle of Russian Jews at that time, as well as the commotion that the Hassidic movement aroused among the Jewish masses.

Source: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2.


AVROM MOREVSKI (March 18, 1886-March 11, 1964)
            The adopted name of the actor and writer Avrom Menaker, he was born in Vilna.  He came from a family of porgers (H. menakerim).  He studied in religious elementary schools, Tanakh and Hebrew with the well-known Vilna educator Dovid Notik, and Russian and secular subject matter with private tutors.  He was drawn when quite young to the theater, studied in the Odessa school, demonstrated great acting talents, and in 1905 began performing theater in Russian.  That year, he was compelled to return to Vilna because of the Odessa pogrom.  Over the years 1907-1910, he studied at the Suvorin Theater School in St. Petersburg, and in 1910 he graduated from the school with distinction; he went on to perform in Pavlovsk at the time of Nikolai II.  In 1918 he returned to Vilna.  Under the influence of the thriving Jewish cultural life of Vilna, he began to act on the stage in Yiddish at Lipovski’s “Folks-teater” (People’s theater), initially appearing in A. Vayter’s drama Der shtumer (The mute), and soon he acquired a great name as an actor and as a director.  His performances with the Vilna Troupe—in which, among other roles, he played the tsadek (saint) of Miropol in An-ski’s Der dibek (The dybbuk), his adaptations in Alter Kacyzne’s Der dukus (The count) and in Osip Dimov’s Shma yisroel (Hear, O Israel), as well as in Kayin (Cain), Hamlet (Hamlet), and other works—elevated the Yiddish theater in Poland, between the two world wars, to a very high level.  Morevski also began to write at an early age.  While he was still a student in the Odessa and St. Petersburg drama schools, he was already writing about theater, and later—together with his ascent as an actor—he grew as a writer as well.  He debuted in print in Yiddish with a polemic against Zalmen Reyzen in Vilna’s Letste nayes (Latest news), and from that point in time he frequently appeared in the Yiddish press and periodicals, such as: Frimorgn (Morning) in Riga; Di vokh (The week), Der tog (The day), and Lebn (Life) in Vilna; Der khoydesh (The month), Der fraynd (The friend), Unzer ekspres (Our express), Der moment (The moment), and Literarishe bleter (Literary leaves)—in Warsaw; Folksblat (People’s newspaper) and Tageblat (Daily newspaper)—in Lodz; Der tog in New York; Di prese (The press) and Idishe tsaytung (Jewish newspaper) in Buenos Aires.  He contributed as well to the anthologies: Ringen (Links), Vayter-bukh (Volume for Vayter), Tealit (Theater and literature), and Di bime (The stage), among other Yiddish-language publications around the world, in which he published articles and treatments of theater and literature, as well as contemporary cultural matters.
            At the beginning of WWII, he was in Bialystok under Soviet control, and there he worked with the Yiddish state theater.  After Germany entered the war against Soviet Russia in 1941, he was evacuated with his theater to Central Asia.  When he returned to his hometown in 1945 after the destruction of Vilna and sought to appear on stage in a poetry recital in Yiddish, the Soviet authorities refused to give him permission, and he thus returned to Soviet Russia and acted there in Russian.  He also turned his attention to research on Shakespeare and gave lectures on the topic in Moscow academic circles.  After seventeen years absence, Morevski returned to Warsaw in 1956, and there he frequently wrote for Yiddish publications.  He also published articles in Di goldene keyt (The golden chain) in Tel Aviv and penned his memoirs.  At age forty (1928), he had written twenty-five installments of his memoirs for Di prese (August-September 1928).  In 1936 he published a volume entitled Kinder-yorn (Childhood years); and in 1956 “after seventeen years of Soviet reality” (preface), he again set to work writing those memoirs.  The result was: Ahin un tsurik, zikhroynes un rayoynes fun a yidn, an aktyor (To there and back, memoirs and thoughts of a Jew, an actor), 4 vols. (Warsaw, 1958–1963) (Warsaw: Yidbukh), vol. 1 (1958), 373 pp., vol. 2 (1959), 286 pp., vol. 3, covering the years 1910-1919 (1960), 528 pp., vol. 4 (1963), 410 pp.  From his earlier years, he published in book form: a translation into Yiddish in verse of Karl Gutzkow’s play, Uriel Acosta (Warsaw, 1921), 128 pp.; a translation of Leonid Andreev’s Der vos krigt di petsh (He who gets slapped [original Tot, kto poluchaet poshchechiny]) (Warsaw, 1921); and his own work Shaylok un shekspir, zibn kapitlen shekspirologye (Shylock and Shakespeare, seven chapters in Shakespeare studies) (Vilna, 1937), 95 pp.  He died in Warsaw.

Morevski at left with unidentified actor

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2; Zalmen Zilbertsvayg, Leksikon fun yidishn teater (Handbook of the Yiddish theater), vol. 2 (New York, 1934), with a detailed bibliography through 1931; M. Vaykhert, Teater un drame (Theater and drama), vol. 2 (Vilna, 1926), pp. 18-20, 38-41, 122-24, 126-30; Vaykhert, Varshe (Warsaw) (Tel Aviv, 1961), see index; M. Shvarts, in Forverts (New York) (July 25, 1932); M. Kitay, in Literarishe bleter (Warsaw) (December 24, 1937); Kitay, Unzere shrayber un kinstler (Our writers and artists) (Warsaw: Jewish Universal Library, 1938), pp. Unzere shrayber un kinstler (Our writers and artists) (Warsaw: Jewish Universal Library, 1938), pp. 146-52; Y. Yeshurin, ed., Vilne (Vilna), anthology (New York, 1935), see index; Meylekh Ravitsh, Mayn leksikon (My lexicon), vol. 2 (Montreal, 1945), see index; “Vegn zayn arbet af shekspir-pyesn” (On his work on Shakespeare’s plays), Eynikeyt (Moscow) (April 13, 1946); Sh. Katsherginski, Tsvishn hamer un serp (Between hammer and sickle) (Paris, 1949), p. 83; H. Vaynroykh, Blut af der zun (Blood on the sun) (New York, 1950), pp. 93-94; Z. Turkov, Farloshene shtern (Extinguished stars), vols. 1 and 2 (Buenos Aires, 1953); Turkov, Teater-zikhroynes fun a shturmisher tsayt (Theater memoirs from a tempestuous time) (Buenos Aires, 1956), see index; Turkov, in Goldene keyt (Tel Aviv) 40 (1961); B. Kutsher, Geven amol varshe (As Warsaw once was) (Paris, 1955), see index; B. Mark, in Yidishe shriftn (Warsaw) (December 1956); Y. Turkov-Grudberg, in Folks-shtime (Warsaw) (March 31, 1956); H. Kon, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (September 5, 1957); Y. Pat, in Tsukunft (New York) (February 1957); Pat, in Der veker (New York) (July 1, 1958); A. Volf-Yasni, in Letste nayes (Tel Aviv) (February 13, 1959); M. Grosman, in Heymish (Tel Aviv) (December 1960); Y. Emyot, in Forverts (April 28, 1961); Y. Rapoport, in Di yidishe post (Melbourne) (April 28, 1961); Yankev Glatshteyn, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (September 3, 1961); Glatshteyn, Mit mayne fartog-bikher (With my daybreak books) (Tel Aviv, 1963), pp. 399-405; Lili Berger, Eseyen un skitsn (Essays and sketches) (Warsaw, 1962), pp. 191-97.
Zaynvl Diamant