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Encyclopedia > Lithuanian Jews

Lithuanian Jews (known in Yiddish and Haredi English as Litvish (adjective) or Litvaks (noun)) are Ashkenazi Jews with roots in Lita, a region including not only present-day Lithuania but also Latvia, much of Belarus and the northeastern Suwałki region of Poland. "Lita", also known as "Litvakia",[1] is roughly coterminous with the territory of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.[2][3] Yiddish (ייִדיש, Jiddisch) is a Germanic language spoken by about four million Jews throughout the world. ... Haredi or chareidi Judaism is the most theologically conservative form of Orthodox Judaism. ... Languages Yiddish, Hebrew, Russian, English Religions Judaism Related ethnic groups Sephardi Jews, Mizrahi Jews, and other Jewish ethnic divisions Ashkenazi Jews, also known as Ashkenazic Jews or Ashkenazim (Standard Hebrew: sing. ... Motto: none Voivodship Podlaskie Municipal government Rada miejska w SuwaÅ‚kach Mayor Józef Gajewski Area 65. ... The Grand Duchy of Lithuania (Lithuanian: , Ruthenian: Wialikaje Kniastwa Litowskaje, Ruskaje, Å»amojckaje, Belarusian: , Ukrainian: , Polish: , Latin: ) was an Eastern and Central European state of the 12th[1] /13th century until the 18th century. ...


Lita was historically home to a large and influential Jewish community that was almost entirely eliminated during the Holocaust: see History of the Jews in Lithuania. Before World War II there were over 110 synagogues and 10 yeshivas in Vilnius.[4] About 4,000 Jews were counted in Lithuania during the 2005 census.[5] There are still strong communities of Jews of Lithuanian descent around the world, especially in Israel, the United States and South Africa. “Shoah” redirects here. ... It has been suggested that Lithuanian Jews be merged into this article or section. ... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000... A synagogue (from ancient Greek: , transliterated synagogē, assembly; Hebrew: beit knesset, house of assembly; Yiddish: , shul; Ladino: , esnoga) is a Jewish house of worship. ... This article is about the Jewish educational system. ... Location Ethnographic region Aukštaitija County Vilnius County Municipality Geographic coordinate system Number of elderates 20 General Information Capital of Lithuania Vilnius County Vilnius city municipality Vilnius district municipality Population About 600,000 in 2006 (1st) First mentioned 1323 Granted city rights 1387 Not to be confused with Vilnius city...

The Grand Duchy of Lithuania
The Grand Duchy of Lithuania

Contents

Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1010x1411, 983 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): History of Lithuania Mindaugas Grand Duchy of Lithuania User:Electionworld/Atlas:Lithuania User:M.K/Laikinas2 Muscovite-Lithuanian... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1010x1411, 983 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): History of Lithuania Mindaugas Grand Duchy of Lithuania User:Electionworld/Atlas:Lithuania User:M.K/Laikinas2 Muscovite-Lithuanian...

Etymology

The word Litvish means "Lithuanian" in Yiddish. (Latvian Jews were known as Lettishe). Of main Yiddish dialects in Europe, the Litvishe Yiddish (Lithuanian Yiddish) dialect was spoken by Jews in Lithuania, Latvia, and Belarus (Russia), and in the northeastern Suwałki region of Poland. Official institutions such as YIVO regard it as the standard form of Yiddish. Yiddish (Yid. ... Languages Historical Jewish languages Hebrew, Yiddish, Ladino, others Liturgical languages: Hebrew and Aramaic Predominant spoken languages: The vernacular language of the home nation in the Diaspora, significantly including English, Hebrew, Yiddish, and Russian Religions Judaism Related ethnic groups Arabs and other Semitic groups The History of the Jews in Latvia... // Regional variation Yiddish has two main branches: Western and Eastern. ... // Yiddish has two main branches: Western and Eastern. ... // Yiddish has two main branches: Western and Eastern. ... Motto: none Voivodship Podlaskie Municipal government Rada miejska w SuwaÅ‚kach Mayor Józef Gajewski Area 65. ... YIVO, (Yiddish: ייִוואָ), founded in 1925 as the Yidisher Visnshaftlekher Institut (Yiddish: ייִדישער װיסנשאַפֿטלעכער אינסטיטוט), or Yiddish Scientific Institute, is the most authoritative source for orthography, lexicography, and other studies related to the Yiddish language. ...


Ethnicity, religious customs and heritage

The characteristically "Lithuanian" approach to Judaism was marked by a concentration on highly intellectual Talmud study. Lithuania became the heartland of the traditionalist opposition to Hasidism, to the extent that in popular perception "Lithuanian" and "mitnagged" became virtually interchangeable terms. In fact, however, a sizable minority of Lithuanian Jews belong(ed) to Hasidic groups, including Chabad, Slonim, Karlin (Pinsk) and Koidanov. With the spread of the Enlightenment, many Lithuanian Jews became devotees of the Haskala movement in Eastern Europe, and today many leading academics, scientists and philosophers are of Lithuanian Jewish descent. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... The first page of the Vilna Edition of the Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Berachot, folio 2a. ... Hasidic Judaism (also Chasidic, etc. ... Mitnagdim (also: misnagdim) is a Hebrew word (מתנגדים) meaning opponents; this term was used to refer to European religious Jews who opposed Hasidic Judaism. ... Chabad Lubavitch, or Lubavich, is one of the largest branch of Hasidic Judaism founded by Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi . ... Slonim (Belarusian: Сло́нім; Russian: Сло́ним Polish: SÅ‚onim) is a city in Belarus in the Hrodna voblast, located at the junction of the Scara and Isa rivers, 143 km southeast of Hrodna. ... Grave of Rebbe Aharon the Great of Karlin - d. ... Pinsk (Belarusian: , Russian: ), a town in Belarus, in the Polesia region, travesed by the river Prypiać, at the confluence of the Strumen and Pina rivers. ... The Age of Enlightenment (French: ; German: ) was an eighteenth-century movement in European and American philosophy, or the longer period including the Age of Reason. ... This article incorporates text from the public domain 1901-1906 Jewish Encyclopedia Haskalah (from the Hebrew word sekhel, meaning intellect) was the movement among European Jews in the late 18th century that advocated adopting enlightenment values, pressing for better integration into European society, and increasing secular knowledge, Hebrew language, and... Map of Eastern Europe Pre-1989 division between the West (grey) and Eastern Bloc (orange) superimposed on current national boundaries: Russia (dark orange), other countries of the former USSR (medium orange),members of the Warsaw pact (light orange), and other former Communist regimes not aligned with Moscow (lightest orange). ...


Lithuanian Jews are known in Yiddish as Litvak (noun) or Litvisher (adjective), or in Hebrew as Litaim. These terms are often used loosely to include those who follow the Lithuanian approach to Judaism (for example because they have attended Lithuanian-style yeshivas), whether or not their ancestors actually came from Lithuania: it seems that "Lithuanian-ness" can be transmitted spiritually as well as genetically. “Hebrew” redirects here. ...


The most famous Lithuanian institution of Jewish learning was Volozhin yeshiva, which was the model for most later yeshivas. "Lithuanian" yeshivas in existence today include Ponevezh, Telshe, Mir, Kelm, and Slabodka. In theoretical Talmud study, the leading Lithuanian authorities were Chaim Soloveitchik and the Brisker school; rival approaches were those of the Mir and Telshe yeshivas. In practical halakha the Lithuanians traditionally followed the Aruch HaShulchan, though today many prefer the more popular Mishnah Berurah. The Volozhin Yeshiva, also known as the Eitz Chaim yeshiva, was a yeshiva situated in Volozhin, present-day Belarus in the 19th century. ... This article is about the Jewish educational system. ... This article is about the Jewish educational system. ... Ponevezh yeshiva (ישיבת פוניבז) (or Ponevitch) is one of the most famous Haredi Talmudical yeshivas with roots among the Lithuanian Jews. ... Telshe yeshiva was a famous Eastern European yeshiva (Talmudical school) now known as the Rabbinical College of Telshe (commonly referred to as Telz Yeshiva, Telz, Telshe. ... Not to be confused with Mir yeshiva (Brooklyn). ... The Kelm Talmud Torah was a famous yeshiva in pre-holocaust Kelmė, Lithuania. ... Slabodka yeshiva (Knesset Yisrael), was known colloquially as the mother of yeshivas (rabbinical seminaries). ... Chaim (Halevi) Soloveitchik (חיים סולובייציק) (also known as Reb Chaim Brisker), (1853-July 30, 1918) was a rabbi and Talmudic scholar credited as the founder of the Brisk yeshivas and of an approach to Talmudic study within Judaism. ... The Brisk yeshivas and methods refers to the movement and to the adoption of the Brisker method of Talmudic study, originated by the Soloveitchik dynasty of rabbinic scholars and their students. ... Not to be confused with Mir yeshiva (Brooklyn). ... Telshe yeshiva was a famous Eastern European yeshiva (Talmudical school) now known as the Rabbinical College of Telshe (commonly referred to as Telz Yeshiva, Telz, Telshe. ... Halakha (Hebrew: הלכה; also transliterated as Halakhah, Halacha, Halakhot and Halachah with pronunciation emphasis on the third syllable, kha), is the collective corpus of Jewish religious law, including biblical law (the 613 mitzvot) and later talmudic and rabbinic law as well as customs and traditions. ... Arukh HaShulkhan is a work of Jewish scholarship, written by Rabbi Yechiel Michel Epstein. ... Mishnah Berurah (Hebrew: Clarified Teaching) is a work of halakha (Jewish law) by Rabbi Yisrael Meir Kagan, better known as The Chofetz Chaim (Poland, 1838 - 1933). ...


Culture

Litvaks have an identifiable mode of pronouncing Hebrew and Yiddish which is often used to determine the boundaries of Lita. Its most characteristic feature is the pronunciation of the vowel holam as [ey] (as against Sephardic /ō/, Germanic [au] and Polish [oy]). In Hebrew orthography, Niqqud or Nikkud (Standard Hebrew נִיקּוּד, Biblical Hebrew נְקֻדּוֹת, Tiberian Hebrew vowels) is the system of diacritical vowel points (or vowel marks) in the Hebrew alphabet. ...


In the popular preception, Litvaks were considered to be more intellectual and stoic than their rivals, the Galitzianers, who thought of them as cold fish. They, in turn, disdained Galitzianers as irrational and uneducated. Ira Steingroot's "Yiddish Knowledge Cards" devote a card to this "Ashkenazi version of the Hatfields and McCoys."[6] This difference is of course connected with the Hasidic/mitnagged debate, Hasidism being considered the more emotional and spontaneous form of religious expression. Galician Jewish cemetery in Buchach, western Ukraine, 2005 Galician Jews or Galitzianer Jews are a subdivision of the Ashkenazim geographically originating from Galicia, from western Ukraine (current Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk and Ternopil regions) and from the south-eastern corner of Poland (Podkarpackie and Lesser Poland voivodeships). ...


The two groups differed not only in their attitudes and their pronunciation, but also in their cuisine. The Galitzianers were known for rich, heavily sweetened dishes vs. the plainer, more savory Litvisher versions, with the boundary known as the "Gefilte Fish Line."[7] Jewish cuisine isnt one unified cuisine, but rather a collection of international cookery traditions, loosely linked by kashrut, the Jewish dietary laws. ... Gefilte fish, (Yiddish: געפילטע פיש) is a ground de-boned fish recipe using a variety of kosher fish meat that is then made into fish loaves or balls, popular with many people of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage. ...


The Vilna Gaon

Rabbi Elijah ben Shlomo Zalman of Vilnius ZT"L was one of the most influential Rabbinic authorities and is the most widely recognized Jewish spiritual leader associated with Lithuania. "The Vilna Gaon" was born in Vilinus and his place of burial is there as well. His burial site was recently renovated by Chabad of Vilnius' Rabbi Sholom Krinsky.


Current leaders

Some famous leaders alive in 2007 include: Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ...

Rabbi Y.S. Eliashiv Yosef Sholom Eliashiv (יוסף שלום אלישיב) (b. ... Rabbi Aharon Yehuda Leib Shteinman (also: Shtainman) (אהרון יהודה לייב שטיינמן) (b. ... Rabbi Nissim Karelitz is the av beis din (head of the rabbinical court) of the beis din tzedek (rabbinical court) of Bnei Brak. ... Rabbi Chaim Pinchas Scheinberg After being honored with holding the baby at a brit milah in 2004. ... Rabbi Michel Yehuda Lefkowitz is a Haredi leader living in Bnei Brak, Israel. ...

Jews in Lithuania today

Interest among descendants of Lithuanian Jews has spurred tourism and a renewal in research and preservation of the community's historic resources and possessions. Increasing numbers of Lithuanian Jews are interested in learning and practising the use of Yiddish.[8]


The beginning of the 21st century was marked by conflicts between members of Chabad-Lubavitch and secular leaders. In 2005, Chief Rabbi Sholom Ber Krinsky was physically removed from the Synagogue by two men hired by the community's secular leader Mr. Alperovich, who then declared a new Chief Rabbi.[9] Chabad Lubavitch, or Lubavich, is one of the largest branch of Hasidic Judaism founded by Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi . ... // Chief rabbi is a title given in several countries to the recognised religious leader of that countrys Jewish community. ...


Among notable contemporary Lithuanian Jews are the brothers Emanuelis Zingeris (a member of the Lithuanian Seimas) and Markas Zingeris (writer), Arkadijus Vinokuras (actor, publicist), Gercas Žakas (football referee), Benjaminas Zelkevičius (football coach)[citation needed], Bilas (Gidonas Šapiro) (pop-singer from ŽAS), Dovydas Bluvšteinas (music producer), Leonidas Donskis (philosopher, essayist), Icchokas Meras (writer), Aleksas Lemanas (singer). Seimas is the Lithuanian parliament. ... Benjaminas Zelkevičius (born February 6, 1944) was coach of FHK Liepajas Metalurgs football club and a former football striker from Lithuania. ... Icchokas Meras – Jewish-Lithuanian writer (born in 1934). ...


Famous Jews with Lithuanian origin or parentage

The following have roots in Latvia: Roman Arkadyevich Abramovich (IPA: ) (Russian: ) (born 24 October 1966 in Saratov, Russia) is a Russian oil billionaire and the main owner of private investment company Millhouse Capital, referred to as one of the Russian oligarchs. ...   (August 16, 1913 – March 9, 1992) (Hebrew: מְנַחֵם בְּגִין) was a Polish-Jewish head of the Zionist underground group the Irgun, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and the first Likud Prime Minister of Israel. ... For a city in France, see Brest, France. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Marc Chagall as photographed in 1941 by Carl Van Vechten. ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ... Aaron Copland Aaron Copland (November 14, 1900 – December 2, 1990) was an American composer of concert and film music. ... United States may refer to: Places: United States of America SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built. ... Bob Dylan (born Robert Allen Zimmerman, May 24, 1941) is an American singer-songwriter, author, musician, and poet who has been a major figure in popular music for five decades. ... United States may refer to: Places: United States of America SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built. ... Romain Gary (May 8, 1914 – December 2, 1980) was a French novelist, film director, World War II pilot, and diplomat. ... This article needs additional references or sources to facilitate its verification. ... United States may refer to: Places: United States of America SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built. ... This article is about minimalism in art and design. ... Leopold Godowsky (Leopold Godowski) (February 13, 1870–November 21, 1938) was a famed pianist, composer, and teacher. ... Nadine Gordimer (born 20 November 1923) is a South African novelist and writer, winner of the 1991 Nobel Prize in literature and 1974 Booker Prize. ... The Nobel Prize in literature is awarded annually to an author from any country who has produced the most outstanding work of an idealistic tendency. The work in this case generally refers to an authors work as a whole, not to any individual work, though individual works are sometimes... Laurence Harvey (October 1, 1928 – November 25, 1973) was an Academy Award-nominated Lithuanian-born actor who achieved fame in British and American films. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ... Location Ethnographic region AukÅ¡taitija County Vilnius County Municipality Geographic coordinate system Number of elderates 20 General Information Capital of Lithuania Vilnius County Vilnius city municipality Vilnius district municipality Population About 600,000 in 2006 (1st) First mentioned 1323 Granted city rights 1387 Not to be confused with Vilnius city... Moe Howard (June 19, 1897 – May 4, 1975) was the leader of the Three Stooges. ... Samuel Shemp Howard / (Horwitz) (March 17, 1895 – November 22, 1955) was part of the Three Stooges comedy team. ... Curly Howard (real name Jerome Lester Horwitz) (October 22, 1903 – January 18, 1952), was one of the Three Stooges, along with brothers Moe Howard and Shemp Howard, and Larry Fine. ... The Three Stooges were an American vaudeville and comedy act of the mid 20th century best known for their numerous short films. ... United States may refer to: Places: United States of America SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built. ... Sir Aaron Klug, OM, FRS (born 11 August 1926 in Zelvas, Lithuania) is a Lithuanian-born British chemist and biophysicist, and winner of the 1982 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his development of crystallographic electron microscopy and his structural elucidation of biologically important nucleic acid-protein complexes. ... Emmanuel Levinas (January 12, 1906 - December 25, 1995) was a Jewish philosopher originally from Kaunas in Lithuania, who moved to France where he wrote most of his works in French. ... Emmanuel Lubezki is a Mexican cinematographer born in 1964. ... Although he never won an Oscar for any of his movie performances, the comedian Bob Hope received two honorary Oscars for his contributions to cinema. ... Sergio Lubezky A. (born 1970) is a Mexican photographer. ...   (Hebrew: בִּנְיָמִין נְתַנְיָהוּ (without niqqud: בנימין נתניהו), Hebrew transliteration written in English: Binyamin Netanyahu, nicknamed Bibi) (born October 21, 1949, Tel Aviv) was the 9th Prime Minister of Israel and is a leading figure in the Likud party. ... Maurice Richard Maury Povich (born January 17, 1939 in Washington, D.C.) is an American TV talk show personality who currently hosts his self-titled talk show Maury which has earned him national recognition due to the paternity tests that are often aired. ... United States may refer to: Places: United States of America SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built. ... Alecia Moore (born September 8, 1979), better known by her stage name Pink (also written as P!nk), is a Grammy Award-winning American singer-songwriter who first gained prominence in North America in early January of 2000. ... United States may refer to: Places: United States of America SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built. ... Dr. Ludovic Lazarus (Ludwik Lejzer) Zamenhof (December 15, 1859–April 14, 1917) was a Polish-Jewish ophthalmologist, philologist, and the initiator of Esperanto, the most widely spoken planned language to date. ... Esperanto flag Esperanto is a constructed international auxiliary language. ... U.S. actress who was born on August 30, 1947, in New York City to a Jewish-American father and an Irish-born mother who was also Jewish. ... United States may refer to: Places: United States of America SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built. ...

Abraham Zevi Idelsohn (1882-1938) was a foremost Jewish ethnologist and musicologist, who conducted several comprehensive studies of Jewish music around the world. ... Sir Isaiah Berlin, OM, (June 6, 1909 – November 5, 1997) was a political philosopher and historian of ideas, regarded as one of the leading liberal thinkers of the 20th century. ... (Henry) Bernard Levin CBE (August 19, 1928 - August 7, 2004) was an English journalist, author and broadcaster. ...

Footnotes

  1. ^ Review of Lituanie Juive
  2. ^ Lituanie Juive
  3. ^ Litvaks
  4. ^ Vilnius, Jerusalem of Lithuania
  5. ^ Lithuanian population by ethnicity
  6. ^ "Yiddish Knowledge Cards"
  7. ^ This is no fish tale: Gefilte tastes tell story of ancestry
  8. ^ Lithuanian Jews revive Yiddish
  9. ^ International Religious Freedom Report

See also

It has been suggested that Lithuanian Jews be merged into this article or section. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ...

External links

  • Official website of Jewish Community of Lithuania (English)
  • Website of Jewish Chabad-Lubavitch Community (English)
  • Website about Jews in Vilnius
  • Collection of photos of Litvaks made in first half of 20th century

Further reading

  • Dov Levin, Adam Teller, The Litvaks: A Short History of the Jews of Lithuania, Berghahn Books, 2001, ISBN 9653080849
  • Alvydas Nikžentaitis, Stefan Schreiner, Darius Staliūnas, Leonidas Donskis, The Vanished World of Lithuanian Jews, Rodopi, 2004, ISBN 9042008504

  Results from FactBites:
 
Lithuanian Jews at AllExperts (4233 words)
Of main Yiddish dialects in Europe, the Litvisher Yiddish (Lithuanian Yiddish) dialect was spoken by Jews in Lithuania, Latvia, and Belarus (Russia), and in the northeastern Suwałki region of Poland.
The Jews who dwelt in smaller towns and villages were not in need of such privileges at this time, as Abraham Harkavy suggests, and the mode of life, the comparative poverty, and the ignorance of Jewish learning among the Lithuanian Jews retarded their intercommunal organization.
Under the charter, the Lithuanian Jews formed a class of freemen subject in all criminal cases directly to the jurisdiction of the grand duke and his official representatives, and in petty suits to the jurisdiction of local officials on an equal footing with the lesser nobles (szlachta), boyars, and other free citizens.
Holocaust Revealed (10030 words)
A distinction is sometimes made between Lithuanian Jews in a restricted sense (from the provinces of Vilna, Kovno, and the northern parts of the provinces of Suwalki and Grodno) and the Belorussian Jews ("province of Russia").
Lithuanian Jewry was relatively less affected by the Chmielnicki massacres that devastated the Jews of Ukraine in 1648-49, and those perpetrated by the Haidamacks during the 18th century.
Jews were prohibited from moving from their house or place of residence without permission from the district or city commisioner; using the sidewalks; using public transportation; residing in spas; visiting parks and playgrounds, theaters, cinemas, libraries, museums, or schools; owning cars or radios.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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