in honor of this week's torah portion - ki tavo
- which includes all of the creative biblical curses of chapter 28 of deuteronomy (such as ... the Lord will strike you with the egyptian inflamation, with hemorrhoids, boil-scars and itch, from which you shall never recover
....ouch) here are some poignant yiddish versions
, use them in the best of health.
a selection of curses - from nahum stutchkoff's thesaurus of the yiddish language
Ale tsores vos ikh hob oyf mayn hartsn, zoln oysgeyn tsu zayn kop.
All problems I have in my heart, should go to his head.
Zol es im onkumn vos ikh vintsh im (khotsh a helft, khotsh halb, khotsh a tsent kheylik).
Let what I wish on him come true (most, even half, even just 10%).
Eyn imglik iz far im veynik.
One misfortune is too few for him.
Finstere leyd zol nor di mama oyf im zen.
Black sorrow is all that his mother should see of him.
Khasene hobn zol er mit di malekh hamoves tokhter.
He should marry the daughter of the Angel of Death.
Shteyner zol zi hobn, nit kayn kinder.
She should have stones and not children.
Azoy fil ritzinoyl zol er oystrinkn.
He should drink too much castor oil.
Oyskrenkn zol er dus mame’s milakh.
He should get so sick as to cough up his mother’s milk.
Oyf doktoyrim zol er dos avekgebn.
He should give it all away to doctors.
Zol er krenken un gedenken.
Let him suffer and remember.
Zalts im in di oygen, feffer im in di noz.
Throw salt in his eyes, pepper in his nose.
Shteyner af zayne beyner.
Stones on his bones.
A kramp (a kram, a kortsh) im in layb (in boyakh, in di kishkes, in di gederem, in di finger).
A cramp in his body (in his stomach, in his guts, in his bowels, in his fingers and toes).
Trinkn zoln im piavkes.
Leeches should drink him dry.
Lakhn zol er mit yashtherkes.
He should laugh with lizards.
Meshuga zol er vern un arumloyfn (iber di gasn).
He should go nuts and run around (through the streets).
A meshugener zol men oyshraybn, un im araynshraybn.
They should free a madman, and lock him up.
A hiltsener tsung zol er bakumn.
He should grow a wooden tongue.
Krugn zol er di (town name here) brokh.
He should get the (town name here) hernia.
Gut zol oyf im onshikn fin di tsen makes di beste.
God should visit upon him the best of the Ten Plagues.
Fransn zol esn zayn layb.
Venereal disease should consume his body.
Farshporn zol er oyf(tsu)shteyn?
Why bother getting up alive?
A kleyn kind zol nokh im heysn.
A young child should be named after him.
Vi tsu derleb ikh im shoyn tsu bagrobn.
I should outlive him long enough to bury him.
Er zol altsting zen, un nit hobn farvos (mit vos) tsu koyfn.
He should see everything, but have no reason (with what) to buy it.
Got zol im bentshn mit dray mentshn: eyner zol im haltn, der tsveyter zol im shpaltn un der driter zol im ba’haltn.
God should bless him with three people: one should grab him, the second should stab him and the third should hide him.
Vifil yor er iz gegangn oyf di fis zol er geyn af di hent un di iberike zol er zikh sharn oyf di hintn.
As many years as he’s walked on his feet, let him walk on his hands, and for the rest of the time he should crawl along on his ass.
Tsen shifn mit gold zol er farmorgn, un dos gantse gelt zol er farkrenkn.
Ten ships of gold should be his and the money should only make him sick.
A groys gesheft zol er hobn mit shroyre: vus er hot, zol men bay im nit fregn, un vos men fregt zol er nisht hobn.
He should have a large store, and whatever people ask for he shouldn’t have, and what he does have shouldn’t be requested.
Hindert hayzer zol er hobn, in yeder hoyz a hindert tsimern, in yeder tsimer tsvonsik betn un kadukhes zol im varfn fin eyn bet in der tsveyter.
A hundred houses shall he have, in every house a hundred rooms and in every room twenty beds, and a delirious fever should drive him from bed to bed.
Ale tseyn zoln bay im aroysfaln, not eyner zol im blaybn oyf tsonveytung.
All his teeth should fall out except one to make him suffer.
In di zumerdike teg zol er zitsn shive, un in di vinterdike nekht zikh raysn af di tseyn.
On summer days he should mourn, and on wintry nights, he should torture himself.
Got zol gebn, er zol hobn altsding vos zayn harts glist, nor er zol zayn geleymt oyf ale ayvers un nit kenen rirn mit der tsung.
God should bestow him with everything his heart desires, but he should be a quadriplegic and not be able to use his tongue.
Migulgl zol er vern in a henglayhter, by tog zol er hengen, un bay nakht zol er brenen.
He should be transformed into a chandelier, to hang by day and to burn by night.
Zayn mazl zol im layhtn vi di levone in sof khoydesh.
His luck should be as bright as a new moon.
Er zol hobn paroys makes bashotn mit oybes krets.
He should have Pharaoh’s plagues sprinkled with Job’s scabies.
Er zol kakn mit blit un mit ayter.
He should crap blood and pus.
Heng dikh oyf a tsikershtrikl vestu hobn a zisn toyt.
Hang yourself with a sugar rope and you’ll have a sweet death.
Es zol dir dunern in boykh, vestu meyen az s’iz a homon klaper.
Your stomach will rumble so badly, you'll think it was Purim noisemaker