Yekkes

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  • #602314

    hershi
    Member

    Does all of German Jewry fall under the umbrella of Yekke’s? If not, what are non-Yekke German Jews considered? (“Litvish” doesn’t seem correct.)

    And what does being Yekke entail?

    #1060138

    stuck
    Member

    Not all frum German Jews are Yekkes, though I’m not sure what the others are considered minhag-wise.

    #1060139

    squeak
    Participant

    You can tell everything by observing a kiddush.

    The people scarfing down herring and kichel are chassidish

    The people with a cup of vodka in each hand are Lubavitch

    The litvak is the one with cholent and kugel on his plate, but waiting for it to turn stone cold

    The ungarish oiberlanders are the ones who have their kugel on fancy plates.

    The unterlanders are licking the crumbs from the kichel off the table

    If there are any sephardim, which would be unusual, they are the ones being served by their wives and/or children

    The yekkes are the ones who are sitting at the table with one cookie

    If I missed any groups that you need help identifying, just let me know. (I purposely left out one group because they are likely to start a flame war denouncing all rw jewry if I include them. They are very sensitive)

    #1060140

    147
    Participant

    from Wikipedia:-

    The term Yekke (adjective: Yekkish) (alt: Jecke or Yecke) is a generally jovial, mildly derogatory term primarily used by Jews to refer to their coreligionists from Germany or who adhere to the Western-European minhag.

    Today, very few original Yekkes are still German residents, but they remain in regions such as Switzerland, Eastern France (Alsace and Lorraine), and Luxembourg. A significant community managed to escape Frankfurt after Kristallnacht, and relocated to the Washington Heights region of New York City, where they still have a synagogue, K’hal Adass Jeshurun, which punctiliously adheres to the Yekkish liturgical text, rituals, and melodies.[1] Most of the 200,000 Jews living in Germany today emigrated from the former USSR after 1990 and only 105,000 are registered members of Jewish communities.[2]

    A group of Yekkes established kibbutz Chofetz Chaim in the Gedarim region of Israel just south of Tel Aviv. Recently a few new Yekkish communities have been started in Israel by “Machon Moreshet Ashkenaz,” and one of the leading communities is K’hal Adas Yeshurun of Jerusalem, which is running a “Nusach Project”, a project of preserving the special Yekkish melodies.

    #1060141

    stuck
    Member

    They are a small community.

    #1060142

    HaLeiVi
    Participant

    UnYekke: How I snuck out of Yekkehoodledom. It was scheduled to come out last week Thursday 5:03, but I’m purposely not caring about that.

    #1060143

    Nechomah
    Participant

    I’m not sure what you mean by “entail”. That implies to me something that you could be if you wanted to do what it involves. I could be wrong, correct me if I am.

    Yekkes, as indicated above, are those of German descent. They have different minhagim, some of which include each adult male making his own kiddush at the Shabbos table, woman lighting only 2 candles – no adding more for children, boys wearing a tallis after Bar Mitzvah, waiting only 3 hours after meat until eating milk.

    To be Yekke, you either have to be born one (males) or marry one (females).

    Now there is a very different concept of being a Yekke that is often spoken of. One midda of Yekkes is known to be their promptness. This is a trait that is inherent in the people of that region, not just the Jews. Also Swiss people are like this. I once went to an appointment with a doctor who happens to be a Jew from Alcace. I was running late and even the taxi driver told me “Oh, you don’t go to Dr. _____ late.” This type of Yekke everybody is free to be, and is actually a worthy midda to work on.

    #1060144

    GG_chap
    Member

    Two Yekkish stories (from my Yekkische shul):

    A guy moves into the area and comes to our shul every day for a few weeks, but no-one says anything to him (or greets) him. And one Shabbos morning he’s standing outside shul after davenning and an older Yekke walks towards to him and say “Gut Shabbos”. And he’s delighted that someone has finally spoken to him and extends his hand and says “Gut Shabbos” in return. And the old Yekke says “No, not you, you fool, ze person behind you”. [BTW, I think that story actually happened, but our shul is *much* more friendly now!].

    A chassidische guy comes to shul one day and asks if there’s a Mikve. And the Yekkische response is, of course, “Vy? Are you a Metzowroh?”.

    And Inyonei D’Yoma: There were some categories of Yieden that didn’t serve the Eigel:

    1. The Amschenovers, who said, “Moshe Rabbeinu late? No, he’s not late”.

    2. Lubavitch, who said “Moshe Rabbeinu dead? No, he’s not dead.”

    3. And the Bresolvers, who said, “So Moshe Rabbeinu is dead… So what?”

    And Satmar, who said, “Ah, but he has a brother – Aharon”.

    #1060145

    stuck
    Member

    With Chasidim, also, every adult (13+) makes his own kiddush.

    #1060146

    147
    Participant

    Response to Nechomah:-

    Yekkes, as indicated above, are those of German descent …… Not exclusively German descent, but Western European Descent including Switzerland, Nethelands, France, and probably also Scandinavia

    They have different minhagim, some of which include each adult male making his own kiddush at the Shabbos table, …. No more so than any other sector of Jewry.

    woman lighting only 2 candles – no adding more for children, …… Becuase candles based on Zochor veShomor, hence only 2 candles required; However Jekkes add something much more significant for their children, that Jekkes Bensch their children thrice each week, by Friday nite Kiddush, Shabbos morning Kiddush, and by Havdoloh (Of-course also by all Kiddush & Havdoloh on Yom Tov too); Benshing their children includes father, mother & grandparents benshing children & grandchildren, and and Benshing spouses of children & grandchildren.

    boys wearing a tallis after Bar Mitzvah, ….. Already by 3 years old.

    waiting only 3 hours after meat until eating milk. ….. Some Jekkes {Dutch & Scandinavian origin} wait 1 hour, as is mentioned by the Romoh in Yoreh Deah.

    #1060147

    lifeisbumpy
    Member

    Some other things that yekke’s do is by the chuppah they are not facing the people and have a tallis on top of them. Some wash before kiddiush, wait 3 hrs, boy at 3 years old brings a wimpel a clothe that gets wrapped around the sefer torah and is designed with the childs name and things.

    Most old time yekke’s who live in a yekkish area are generally proud of their roots.

    Yekkes are spread out all over but most people just dont know who in their area is yekkish, theirs switzerland, washington heights, and other areas that have a great yekkish population.

    #1060148

    Bowwow
    Participant

    Here is a link to Madrich L’bnei Ashkenaz by R’ Binyamin Hamburger of Machon Moreshes Ashkenaz of Bnei Brak. He has done extensive research on the various minhagim. The Hebrew version is current for this year, the English version is a few years old.

    http://www.moreshesashkenaz.org/mm/publications/Madrich.pdf

    http://www.moreshesashkenaz.org/mm/publications/MadrichEnglish.pdf

    #1060149

    twisted
    Participant

    And for the hapless visitor, ignorance of the “law” is no excuse!

    #1060150

    Toi
    Participant

    Bowwow- i got 404s on both links.

    #1060151

    sushee
    Member

    It’s amazing that German Jewry has a comparitavely higher holocaust survival rate, despite the fact they were literally in Hitler and the Nazi ym’s’ lions den.

    #1060154

    yekke2
    Participant

    And what does being Yekke entail?

    Being a Yekke, unlike most other sects of Judaism, entails being born a Yekke. Other sects include transforming, changing ????? and deciding to do what you want. Not Yekkes.

    Yekkes, as indicated above, are those of German descent. They have different minhagim, some of which include each adult male making his own kiddush at the Shabbos table, woman lighting only 2 candles – no adding more for children, boys wearing a tallis after Bar Mitzvah, waiting only 3 hours after meat until eating milk.

    I am a Yekke, am related to many Yekkes, and affiliated with dozens of Yekkes, and I have yet to see a Yekkishe family where each adult male makes his own kiddush. I have heard of Chassidim doing that, but i have never seen a Yekke doing it.

    Candles – Correct.

    I wore a Tallis from when i was about nine – most yekkes wear a tallis already before their bar mitzvah. In my family, we start when we start going to Shul for Shacharis.

    woman lighting only 2 candles – no adding more for children, …… Becuase candles based on Zochor veShomor, hence only 2 candles required; However Jekkes add something much more significant for their children, that Jekkes Bensch their children thrice each week, by Friday nite Kiddush, Shabbos morning Kiddush, and by Havdoloh (Of-course also by all Kiddush & Havdoloh on Yom Tov too); Benshing their children includes father, mother & grandparents benshing children & grandchildren, and and Benshing spouses of children & grandchildren.

    My parents only bentch us once – Friday night. I haven’t heard of being bentched thrice. By the way, my Litvishe grandfather (maternal) also bentches us weekly, although it could be because he married a yekke.

    They are a small community.

    You can thank Mr Hitler for that.

    #1060155

    Actually, German Jews had one of the highest survival rates from the holocaust, since they were able to see what the Nazi’s were planning long before everyone else (since they lived in Germany) and many escaped, whereas by time the Nazis overran other European countries it was too late to escape.

    Being a Yekke, unlike most other sects of Judaism, entails being born a Yekke. Other sects include transforming, changing ????? and deciding to do what you want. Not Yekkes.

    Actually, that is true with all sectors of Judaism. Nothing unique to Yekkes.

    #1060156

    yekke2
    Participant

    Being a Yekke, unlike most other sects of Judaism, entails being born a Yekke. Other sects include transforming, changing ????? and deciding to do what you want. Not Yekkes.

    Actually, that is true with all sectors of Judaism. Nothing unique to Yekkes.

    Not Chassidim – I’m afraid if that would be true, Chassidus wouldn’t exist – isn’t it a modern invention – like within the last 300 years?

    #1060157

    avhaben
    Participant

    Chasidim follow the ARIZAL’s minhagim, that the ARI HaKodesh instituted.

    #1060158

    yaakov doe
    Participant

    Coming to shiul on time defines a Yeke

    #1060159

    dafbiyun
    Participant

    so the yekke tells his wife ” I am going to be coming home late from shul tonight” “why is that”? she asks. “Well”, he says, they are starting to say vsain tal umutor…”

    #1060160

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    There are probably fewer Yekkes because there was higher assimilation in Germany than elsewhere. While there were plenty of secular jews in Poland they still were somewhere seperate than the regular population. They were Jews not Polish.

    In Germany the were German not jewish and many German Jews had intermarried which did not occur in the east

    #1060161

    avhaben
    Participant

    What are the frum German Yidden, who are not Yekkes, called?

    #1060162

    RN12
    Member

    vimpel happens when the child is toilet trained, nothing to do with 3, its not an upsherin. Tallasim have nothing to do with bar mitzva its whenever they go to shul. Fyi, under the “yekkes” umbrella groups from different areas have slightly different minhagim (some wash before kiddush, some dont, there are slight variations in davening etc)and most importantly we are super proud of our heritage!

    #1060163

    RN12 – ” Fyi, under the “yekkes” umbrella groups from different areas have slightly different minhagim (some wash before kiddush, some dont, there are slight variations in davening etc)and most importantly we are super proud of our heritage! “

    True dat! I’m a (mainly…) yekke, and I didn’t recognise a lot of the things that this thread claims yekkes ‘do’. Though I do have a bit of Gerrer blood in me too, and that’s messed up my minhogim a little… But my wife is pure-blood, died-in-the-wool yekkish on all sides and even some of the minhogim that I knew in my family are yekkish she’d never heard of, and visa-versa.

    And about the whole wearing a tallis before marriage, I used to love pointing out to people in yeshiva who asked me why I wore one that the mishna berura (hardly a yekke by anyone’s accounting) says that it is a chiyuv gomur. The looks were hysterical…

    #1060164

    Please hit “caps lock” and try again.

    #1060165

    Toi
    Participant

    RN- you begin to shtell avekk exactly what the criteria are for certain minhagim, and then go on to say that others are lav davka. brilliant.

    #1060166

    Vogue
    Member

    I am mainly of German descent but never had the opportunity to ask my father about being yekkish because he left the family but What are the relevant minhagim I need to know

    #1060167

    notasheep
    Member

    I always joke that before I got married I was a yekke, and my husband says that in itself is a yekkishe vort!

    Lighting candles on friday night – yes some light only 2 but because as far as I know candle lighting is the only minhag where a woman follows her mother, this is not so true any more. My mother lights for each child (and she is a proper yekke) and so do I.

    You can also tell a real old yekke by their pronunciation…

    #1060168

    Vogue
    Member

    Ok

    #1060169

    It’s all about how much stress you can handle..

    #1060170

    Vogue
    Member

    What do you mean?

    #1060171

    Yekkes are very stressful, my bad, let me rephrase, they r very calm but get everyone around them stressed

    #1060172

    Vogue
    Member

    Ok

    #1060174

    notasheep
    Member

    Only cause we seem to have created the concept of ‘Jewish time’ and a lot of people don’t know how to be punctual anymore. Ok, there are some yekkes who are neurotic about punctuality but for most of us it’s just reasonable and mentschlich to be on time. I was once at a wedding of a friend, where the chuppa started exactly on time. Another person I know came in the middle of the chuppa and her comment was ‘who starts a wedding on time?’ – those were her exact words. Time is a very precious thing and yekkes respect that.

    I agree though that some are very particular about details of things cause that’s how they always do it and they’re not gonna change, so they are very inflexible and that’s not good either.

    #1060175

    Yserbius123
    Participant

    In KAJ Monsey there was a story one year where the cops call the president at home one night after 2am. They tell him that the shul alarm went off and they are going to check it out. He comes in to shul to find that one of the more insane members had went in to change all of the clocks for daylight savings time.

    I personally know both parties involved and can vouch for the story’s accuracy.

    #1060176

    Vogue
    Member

    thats funny.

    #1060177

    yaakov doe
    Participant

    The Yekkes should send shlichim into the larger Jewish community to spread the concepts of timliness and decorum to the other Yiddin. The are the best!

    #1060178

    Vogue
    Member

    +1

    #1060179

    Bowwow/Toi:

    The links do work if you go to the address and load them (again).

    I also have some yekkishe background.

    #1060180

    Shopping613
    Participant
    #1060181

    Yekke
    Participant

    Response to Yserbius123:

    Being the reportedly insane member in question – I would like to point out to you that there is perhaps another angle that you haven’t thought about: The lights had to go on before davening the next morning and yours truly is responsible for that…

    And if C”V they would go on late? Who would be the first to make a world scandal out of it but… YOU of all people!

    Now, being that you know all parties in question – you are therefore proving yourself (again) a worthy member of the group depicted in the first paragraph of GG_Chap’s post above…

    #1060182

    Vogue
    Member

    why would you do that?

    #1060184

    AFSHERFARKERT
    Participant

    An average Yekkeh can talk at least seven languages but can’t cook a decent meal. When you go to a Yekkeh wedding you are not sure if you are at a wedding or a fundraising dinner till you hear the rabbi speak.

    #1060185

    Toi
    Participant

    The average yekke can kick your tuches in learning. watch it fool.

    #1060186

    yekke2
    Participant

    Efsherfarkert – PUNKT Fakert. I know some great yekkishe cooks, and none of them speak seven languages (random?!).

    Toi – Are you a yekke?

    BTW- Both of you – these generelizations are ridiculous. There is no such thing as an “average yekke”.

    #1060187

    nfgo3
    Member

    What do you get when a Yekke marries a Lubavitcher? Children who exactly one hour late to everything.

    #1060188

    nfgo3
    Member

    Re yekke2’s comment that there is no such thing as an “average Yekke”: All the Yekkes I know tell me that all Yekkes are above average, but half of all Lubavitchers are below average.

    #1060189

    Toi
    Participant

    yes

    #1060190

    147
    Participant

    When you go to a Yekkeh wedding you are not sure if you are at a wedding or a fundraising dinner till you hear the rabbi speak. Until you hear Shir HaMa’alos {Psalm 128} being sung.

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