• n. "The little container...in which money to be donated to charity is accumulated." (Rosten)

Example Sentences

  • "Every week you put a little in the pushke." - teacher, speaking about the "Old Country"

Languages of Origin

  • Yiddish


  • פּושקע pushke '(tin) can; (alms) box'

    • Who Uses This

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


      • North America
      • South Africa


      • The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
      • Yiddish and English: A Century of Yiddish in America, by Sol Steinmetz (Tuscaloosa, 1986).
      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).

      Alternative Spellings

      pishkey, pushkey, pushka, pushkie, pishke


  • From the Slavic word for 'box'. In some games popularly played by Jews, such as mah jonh, 'pushke' can also mean the money gambled.

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