Chelm

Definitions

  • from Yiddish literature/folklore, "The 'legendary' town inhabited by befuddled, stupid, foolish, but endearing people." (JPS). Also a real town in Poland (Chełmno).

Example Sentences

  • "One Jewish Chelm resident bought a fish on Friday to serve on the Sabbath. He put the live fish underneath his coat and the fish slapped his face with his tail. He went to the Chelm court to submit a charge, and the court sentenced the fish to death by drowning."

Languages of Origin

Yiddish

Etymology

כעל(ע)ם

Who Uses This

Older: Jews who are middle-aged and older
Ashkenazim: Jews with Ashkenazi heritage

Regions

North America

Dictionaries

The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).

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