Friday, October 13, 2006 I was asked the following question:
Does your Jewish name imply whether you are a Kahane, Levi, or
the Tribe your father is from???
was my response:
Your Jewish name is different from your Hebrew name. A Jewish
name is more a nickname. Someone named Moses might be called Moishy. Your Hebrew
name, however, memorializes someone in your family who has passed on IF you are
Ashkenazi or is a sign of respect to someone living IF you are Sephardic.
My name, for instance, is HaRav Zev ben Yaacok Tzwi...the Yaacov Tzwi was my
father's Hebrew, or spiritual, name and I am Zev his son. The only time lineage
is involved is when it comes to Kahanic descent. It would be "Yitzchak ben
Avrohom HaKohain". In most instances, it only refers to parental lineage not
The Yiddish (Jewish) equivalent for Zev is "wolf" and for Tzwi is "hirsch" or,
in English, is deer.
you have questions about a personal matter, or jewish practices
and customs, you can submit them to me by e-mail.
I answer all queries directly, or through this column, when the
question is informative to our community.
you for your kind attention and this opportunity to share with
Rabbi Dan S. Wiko
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