PDA

View Full Version : Yiddish: A Variant of Middle High German...



Loki
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 02:55 AM
It is often forgotten that Yiddish is a variant of Middle High German, and within the family tree of Germanic languages. Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yiddish_language) has an interesting summary of the language.

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 04:49 AM
Yeah, I know this. Its a cool language. I beleive it is closest to "plattsdeutch" (spelling?)....which is most common around Hamburg. I like the "harshness" of the guttoral sounds in Yiddish.

Vorkämpfer
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 08:40 AM
I beleive it is closest to "plattsdeutch" (spelling?)....
No i don't think that you should compare yiddish with plattdeutsch(Plautdietsch- common among Mennonites)!Yiddish is high german and plattdeutsch is low german,yiddish involves slavic and roman words,i can not see those elements in plattdeutsch!!

Tabitha
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 09:46 AM
I love the Yiddish language, I use so many of its idioms that people are always surprised to find out that I'm not Jewish.

Jäger
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 10:23 AM
True.

It is also often forgotten that Ebonics is a variant of English, and actually a Germanic language. Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ebonics) has an interesting summary of the language.

Graumahd
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 12:15 PM
I´ve heard some Jiddisch on the TV some time ago and it sounded awful to my ears. I´m not joking, it really has a very very strange sound to me. Sounds like a grinning Russian speaking German without loosing his Russian style of speaking :D

Tabitha
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 12:27 PM
I'm a lowland Scot and the old Scots tongue is Germanic so the sounds of Yiddish seem really familiar to me.



I´ve heard some Jiddisch on the TV some time ago and it sounded awful to my ears. I´m not joking, it really has a very very strange sound to me. Sounds like a grinning Russian speaking German without loosing his Russian style of speaking :D

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 02:05 PM
No i don't think that you should compare yiddish with plattdeutsch(Plautdietsch- common among Mennonites)!Yiddish is high german and plattdeutsch is low german,yiddish involves slavic and roman words,i can not see those elements in plattdeutsch!!
It says Yiddish is "middle-high German". I saw something about it similarity to Plattdeutsch, but I cant find it now. Once I find it, I will post it.

The oldest surviving literary document in Yiddish is a blessing in a Hebrew prayer book from 1272 (described extensively in Frakes 2004 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yiddish#frakes2004) and Baumgarten/Frakes 2005 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yiddish#baumgarten2005)):

גוּט טַק אִים בְּטַגְֿא שְ וַיר דִּיש מַחֲזֹור אִין בֵּיתֿ הַכְּנֶסֶתֿ טְרַגְֿא
transliterated,

gut tak im betage se vaer dis makhazor in beis hakneses terage

and translated,

may a good day come to him who carries this prayer book into the synagogue.

This brief rhyme is decoratively embedded in a purely Hebrew text (a reproduction of which is in Katz 2004 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yiddish#katz2004)). Nonetheless, it indicates that the Yiddish of that day was a more or less regular Middle High German into which Hebrew words — makhazor (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahzor) (prayer book for the High Holy Days (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Holidays)) and beis hakneses (synagogue (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synagogue)) — had been included.

Zyklop
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:00 PM
Yiddish sounds like a drunk Polak with a hiccup trying to speak Bavarian. What a silly babbling! :lol

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:14 PM
Yiddish sounds like a drunk Polak with a hiccup trying to speak Bavarian. What a silly babbling! :lol
Really? I dont think so at all. I find Bavarian to sound very "soft"...Bavarians pronounce many of their "ch" (throat sounds) as "sh" as in the english word "shy". I find Yiddish to sound much more like the northern German dialects, which are harsher sounding. (which I like)

Jäger
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:15 PM
Here is a yiddish singer, although I think he has an american dialect.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pb9DlAtFYUA

Zyklop
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:18 PM
Really? I dont think so at all. I find Bavarian to sound very "soft"...Bavarians pronounce many of their "ch" (throat sounds) as "sh" as in the english word "shy".
For example?

I find Yiddish to sound much more like the northern German dialects, which are harsher sounding. (which I like)
I doesn´t sound like northern German dialect at all. What you find 'harsh' may be the Slavic influence.

Here you can find sound samples of German dialects:

http://web.uni-marburg.de/sprache-in-hessen/

(click on 'Deutsche Dialekte' at the bottom left)

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:20 PM
Doesnt sound Bavarian at all. Sounds much more Northern-German, in my opinion. (which is too bad, cuz there are some aspects of Bavarian German I actually like, like their "R" sound)

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:26 PM
For example?

I doesn´t sound like northern German dialect at all. What you find 'harsh' may be the Slavic influence.

Here you can find sound samples of German dialects:

http://web.uni-marburg.de/sprache-in-hessen/

(click on 'Deutsche Dialekte' at the bottom left)
For example, my German teacher is Bavarian, and for basic words like "Ich" and "Nicht" ect, she pronounces them "Ish" and "Nisht".

Hmm, well by Northern I didnt mean Schleswig Holstein, or Vorpommern area, but rather a bit south of Hamburg. Thats what I find Yiddish to sound most like.

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:28 PM
Here is a yiddish singer, although I think he has an american dialect.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pb9DlAtFYUA
He sounds rather nice, actually. Strange. Most Yiddish I hear doesnt sound that great, but I think its because I hear it spoken from old women. :D

Zyklop
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:33 PM
For example, my German teacher is Bavarian, and for basic words like "Ich" and "Nicht" ect, she pronounces them "Ish" and "Nisht".
That´s the most ridiculous thing I´ve heard since long. Most likely your German teacher has a serious(!) speech defect.
In Bavarian "Ich" is spoken like English "e" without any -ch at all and "Nicht" would be spoken like English "ned".

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:36 PM
That´s the most ridiculous thing I´ve heard since long. Most likely your German teacher has a serious(!) speech defect.
In Bavarian "Ich" is spoken like English "e" without any -ch at all and "Nicht" would be spoken like English "ned".
Haha, no, she doesnt have any speech defects, she talks normally fine in English.

I dont understand your examples? "Ich" is "e" and "nicht" is "ned"???:|

That doesnt sound right at all. Could you please explain better.

Zyklop
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:45 PM
That doesnt sound right at all. Could you please explain better.
Do you actually know what a dialect is?

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:48 PM
Do you actually know what a dialect is?
.......Yes......:|

Jäger
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 05:56 PM
This "Ish" is only common in Hessia, certainly not in Bavaria.

In Bavarian "Ich" is spoken like "ee" in "Bee". capishe? :D

Bavarian actually seems close to english, the "ee" is written in german (bavarain) as "I", and they say for "ein" "a", like in english, Oswiu do you know something here? :)

Another example, they say for "Boy" "Bub" which comes close I think.

Janus
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 06:03 PM
Well you cannot hear that speech problem, it's not that uncommon that people are unable to pronounce the "ch" , when she speaks English because you doesn't have that sound there ;)
Furthermore I have rather impression that Bavarians prounce ch often like k. For example saying Kina insteast of China. In the Bavarian dialect I don't know any words containing ch at all.

BasqueDirndl
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 06:06 PM
In the beginning of Schindler's List when they light the candle, are they speaking or singing in Yiddish? Can anyone remember?

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 06:18 PM
This "Ish" is only common in Hessia, certainly not in Bavaria.

In Bavarian "Ich" is spoken like "ee" in "Bee". capishe? :D

Bavarian actually seems close to english, the "ee" is written in german (bavarain) as "I", and they say for "ein" "a", like in english, Oswiu do you know something here? :)

Another example, they say for "Boy" "Bub" which comes close I think.
Hmm. I think she may have actually grown up in Frankfurt, then taught at the Uni in Regensburg. So she may speak with a Hessen accent, even though living most of her life in Bavaria. I think this is the case. In any case, thanks for clearing it up.

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 06:19 PM
Well you cannot hear that speech problem, it's not that uncommon that people are unable to pronounce the "ch" , when she speaks English because you doesn't have that sound there ;)
Furthermore I have rather impression that Bavarians prounce ch often like k. For example saying Kina insteast of China. In the Bavarian dialect I don't know any words containing ch at all.
Hmm...I always thought it was the Dutch that used a "K" sound much more than the "ch", not the Bavarians.

Tabitha
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 06:21 PM
I can't recall but it'll probably be the brocha ( blessing) baruch atai adonai .... in Hebrew.
So, hang on it's only us Scots who say nicht phonetically then? :0
As in, uch aye the nicht?




In the beginning of Schindler's List when they light the candle, are they speaking or singing in Yiddish? Can anyone remember?

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 06:30 PM
I can't recall but it'll probably be the brocha ( blessing) baruch atai adonai .... in Hebrew.
Yes, that not Germanic. Thats anceint Hebrew. It means "Blessed are you, Lord our God"... and then it goes on. Its pretty standard Bible stuff. :D

Lönebergar
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 07:08 PM
Hmm. I think she may have actually grown up in Frankfurt,


That's the explanation.
Here is a MP3 about "Hessisch"

Thusnelda
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 07:10 PM
For those who are interested in the specialities of the Bavarian dialect, here is a nice link:

http://www.bayerische-sprache.de/Index/Remaraweng%20Boarisch.htm

GoyFire
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 08:53 PM
Imagine German spoken by a crude, thuggish, vulgar immigrant -- that's what yiddish sounds like to German ears.

oneeyeisbetter
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 09:34 PM
Wolf Slayer and CL sitting in a tree K I S S I N G.

Yiddish is not Germanic to me.. rather a sick offshoot.

Lets not preserve yiddish.

California Love
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 09:44 PM
Wolf Slayer and CL sitting in a tree K I S S I N G.????:|


Yiddish is not Germanic to me.. rather a sick offshoot.

Lets not preserve yiddish.
Whether or not its Germanic to YOU is irrelevant. Most of its words, and grammer structure are very close to German and linguists dubb it as a Germanic language.

As for preserving it....well, I dunno. I dont speak Yiddish and there isnt exactly a need for it, and it isnt a national language, BUT, I have a feeling it will be preserved and still known by some people, like Hebrew was up until the state of Israel was declared.

Theudiskaz
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 09:50 PM
Really? I dont think so at all. I find Bavarian to sound very "soft"...Bavarians pronounce many of their "ch" (throat sounds) as "sh" as in the english word "shy". I find Yiddish to sound much more like the northern German dialects, which are harsher sounding. (which I like)Nee, schdimmt goar nit. :D

Oswiu
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 10:05 PM
Bavarian actually seems close to english, the "ee" is written in german (bavarain) as "I", and they say for "ein" "a", like in english, Oswiu do you know something here? :)
Hehe, you flatter me!
I'm a Slavonicist really, and even that's a terrible exaggeration!

Funny Russian rhyme -

меня спросили на иврите:
"Ви по-евrейски говоrите?"
А я в ответ - на чистом идиш:
"Ты чо, в натуре, сам не видишь!?"

Menya sprosili na ivrite;
"Bi po yevreyski govorite?"
A ya v otvet - na chistom idish;
"Ty cho, v nature, sam ne vidish!?"

They asked me in Hebrew;
"Do you speak Jewish?"
And I in answer - in pure Yiddish;
"what's the matter, can't you tell?"

Oh well... It's funny in Russian... :( ;)

Theudiskaz
Friday, October 20th, 2006, 11:04 PM
Bavarian actually seems close to english, the "ee" is written in german (bavarain) as "I", and they say for "ein" "a", like in english, Oswiu do you know something here? :)
I think that is pure coincidence, Jäger. But yes Bavarian dialects do show some similarities to Ingvaeonic languages, like English and Frisian, specifically "ei"->"a" or even "oa", and "Ich"->"I". These tendencies arose long after the High German consonant shift, which separated Low Germanic languages from High Germanic languages, and after English began the process of proto-west-germanic "stain-" becoming "staan", then "stoon", and now "steun".;)

Nordgau
Friday, October 27th, 2006, 04:44 PM
Furthermore I have rather impression that Bavarians prounce ch often like k. For example saying Kina insteast of China. In the Bavarian dialect I don't know any words containing ch at all.

"China" is anyway a special case, because it is not a German stem word, but a foreign name. In South East German indeed also Greek foreign words hwich begin with "Che..." or "Chi..." are pronounced as "Ke..." and "Ki...", such as "Chirurgie" or "Chemie", where standard German affords the "ich" sound ...

There are, however, very well the "ach" as well as the "ich" sound plentifully represented in the Bavarian dialect: "Recht", "schlecht", "Rauch", "braucha" ("brauchen") ... I could think of very many words. The sounds may even appear at places where they do not in the standard German equivalent, e. g. "I soch" ("Ich sage").

Nachtengel
Friday, July 17th, 2009, 09:35 AM
Imagine German spoken by a crude, thuggish, vulgar immigrant -- that's what yiddish sounds like to German ears.
True. Yiddish is a vulgarization of the German language by foreigners, just like the Negros invented ebonics in the USA.