Yiddish Vinkl for Aug. 2

Tsibele (TSI-buh-luh))

Meaning: onion

• “My zayde used to say this when someone insulted him: ‘Vaksn zolstu vi a tsibele mitn kop in dr’erd. / May you grow like an onion with your head in the ground.’” (bit.ly/2YgVqQ9)

• “The Jews also spiced their language with words picked up from the Romance languages of the countries in which they had previously lived -- Old Italian, Old Spanish and Old French ... Tsibele, ‘onion’ is derived from the old Italian word ‘cipolla.”’ (bit.ly/2Yy08NK)

• “Zi veynt mit tsibele-trern / She’s crying onion tears.” (Onion tears, like crocodile tears, are not true expressions of sadness. (bit.ly/2JSCqU2)


Shaker Heights resident Harold Ticktin prepares “Yiddish Vinkl” for the Cleveland Jewish News.

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