Sunday 17 February 2019


MOYSHE KONSTANTINOVSKI (April 13, 1898-January 21, 1972)
            He was a Hebrew and Yiddish author of fiction and a translator, born in Lyubar, Volhynia, the brother of Menashe Konstantinovski.  They were together in Odessa and Galicia, and from 1923 in Argentina.  There he worked as a teacher.  In 1962 he settled in Israel.  In 1924 he began writing in Far groys un kleyn (For big and small) in Buenos Aires with a series of articles on the life of the Jews in Persia, where he had been as a Russian soldier during WWI.  He wrote poems, stories, reviews, and memoirs in: Idishe tsaytung (Jewish newspaper), Di prese (the press), Penemer un penemlekh (Appearances, big and small), Davke (Necessarily), and Der shpigl (The mirror), among others.  His work appeared as well in the anthologies: Antologye fun der yidisher literatur in argentine (Anthology of Jewish literature in Argentina) (Buenos Aires, 1944); Yorbukh fun yidishn yishev in argentine (Yearbook of the Jewish community in Argentina) (Buenos Aires, 1946).  With his brother, he edited Idish-shpanish verter-bukh (Yiddish-Spanish dictionary) by Y. L. Vinokur (Winocur) (Buenos Aires, 1931).  In book form: Fun do un dort, dertseylungen (From here and there, stories) (Buenos Aires: Literatur un visnshaft, 1935), 96 pp.; Yidishe un hebreishe lider far shul un heym, un far yonṭoyvim un fayerungen, miṭ muziḳ (Yiddish and Hebrew songs for school and home, and for holidays and celebrations, with music) (Buenos Aires, 1947), 141 pp.; and he wrote the play Akhashveyresh tipesh (Aashverosh, the fool).  He translated (both prose and poetry) from Hebrew, Russian, German, Spanish, and French—among other items, Lider (Poetry) by A. S. Pushkin (Buenos Aires, 1937), 48 pp. and Yitskhok Kaplan’s Opklangen funem altn kheyder (Echoes from the old religious elementary school); among others.  He was one of three translators of Tanakh into Spanish.  In Hebrew he wrote under the name M. Kushtai.  Several longer works by him remain in manuscript.  He died in Kiryat Ono, near Tel Aviv.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzeb, Leksikon, vol. 3, together with Menashe Konstantinovski; Antologye fun der yidisher literatur in argentine (Anthology of Jewish literature in Argentina) (Buenos Aires, 1944), p. 921; P. Kats, Geklibene shriftn (Selected works), vol. 7 (Buenos Aires, 1947), p. 79; Yeshurin archive, YIVO (New York).
Ruvn Goldberg

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