25 November 2014

Tombstone Tuesday: Tzeitel bat Elimelech, Labun Jewish cemetery

In June of 2013 I had the pleasure of visiting Ukraine and Labun (now Yurovshchina; once called Lubin in Yiddish), my paternal grandparents' community. We were able to visit the old Jewish cemetery, which I discussed in an earlier post. Over the next several Tuesdays I will post photos and translations (as I am able to decipher) of tombstones from that cemetery. Most do not feature surnames.
Here lies
honest, aged, 
esteemed Tzeitel
daughter of Elimelech
22nd day in the month of
Iyar 1927
May her soul be bound in everlasting life

As usual, some of this translation has required  interpretation. I believe that the engraver may have run out of room on the third to last line and placed the last letter of the word לחודש (in the month of) on the next line. The shin (ש) then runs into the name of the month (איר) on the second to last line.

The 22nd day of Iyar would have fallen on 24 May in 1927.

I had some help deciphering some of the Hebrew letters from participants on Tracing the Tribe FaceBook page. Translation mistakes are my own [After initially posting this article, I have made some corrections to the original translation thanks to input from Israel Pickholtz.].


  1. I am not sure how you assigned the words for translat ion, as the stone has three adjectives and the translation just two.

    ישרה is "honest" rather than "innocent."

    חשובה is often translated as "important" but that is more vernacular than traditional. The root ח-ש-ב means think, so חשובה means "well-though of" or in normal English "esteemed." That is the word I use on the graves on my own family site.

    1. Ach! I had a brain melt down (apparently) and mistook the first word for Isha. For "honest" didn't they use the masculine form (yashar, rather than yashara)? So, would you translate it as "here lies honest, aged, esteemed Tzeitel?"

      Thanks, Israel!

  2. You are right about חודש being split onto two lines. we find thgis in records as well - the scribes don't always pay attention to the carriage return.

    1. As a (once) truly terrible typist, I can tell you that the best thing about computers is the advent of the automatic carriage return.


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