Posts Tagged ‘December 15’

Happy Esperanto Day!

Posted in General, On This Day on December 15th, 2009 by Eugene Finerman – 2 Comments

December 15, 1859:  Ludwig–well, really Eliezer–Zamenhof is born.

Ludwig Zamenhof, the creator of Esperanto, was already conversant in one international language, and he thought that Gentiles might like their own equivalent of Yiddish.

How international was Yiddish? In his autobiography, Edward G. Robinson recounted the time that he met Leon Trotsky in Mexico. How did the Rumanian-born actor converse with the Ukrainian-born revolutionary? Emanuel Goldenberg and David Bronstein had a language in common.

Unlike Yiddish, however, Esperanto is said to be deficient for expressing emotions, rational to the point of sterility.  Perhaps from his experiences with Poles and Russians, Zamenhof preferred Gentiles not to express themselves emotionally. What is the Esperantese for ‘pogrom”?  Zamenhof never imagined what emotionless Germans could do. Unfortunately, all of his children found out.