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Alternative Spellings

mekhaya, m'khaye, mechaya, machaya


  • "Pleasure, enjoyment, a real joy" (Rosten); something that gives great joy

Example Sentences

  • "To hear you sing--such a mechaye." (young Reform cantor in Manhattan)

Languages of Origin



Yiddish מחיה mekháye 'delight, pleasure', from Heb mekhayé '(something that) vitalizes, rejuvenates'

Who Uses This

Older: Jews who are middle-aged and older


North America, Great Britain


The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001)


Usually said with the article "a" (i.e., a mechaye), as in Yiddish.

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