Names: Places of origin or occupations or ?

Among the difficulties we encounter when transcribing old community records written in cursive Hebrew, is the appearance of words that have no apparent English equivalent and which usually, but not exclusively, relate to places of origin or occupations.

The script in this burial record dated  24 Dec 1804 for  a child of Joseph b. Abraham was relatively ease to decipher as the Secretary of the day wrote in  good clear script and the page was not disfigured with blots, smudges and scratchings out.  However, we were rather fazed by the letters following the father’s name Ayin-bet-yod-resh-shin-tet-resh-vav-yod-aleph  for which we could find no apparent translation.

A SynagogueScribes advanced search based on Hebrew Name = Joseph plus Father’s Hebrew name = Abraham  produced some 35 – 40 results, from which it quickly became apparent that the family name was ABRAHAMS and the letters completing the patronymic had previously been transliterated to read Ebarstrow or Ebarstrova.

A further search, entering variations on Family name = Abrahams and Father’s Hebrew name = Joseph, or spouse = Joseph etc.  produced  four Great Synagogue Burials where Dr. Susser had variously transliterated the Hebrew characters as ABERSTRAU\ABIR STREUE\ EBBIRSTOWE  and ABE RESTROY  

The online Jewishgen Shtetl-Seeker produced only one result that was remotely possible; the Polish own of Obra Stara, NW of Kalisz

We are not convinced that we have that identified the correct place. Or even that the letters do spell a place name.   If any readers of this blog can offer an alternative reading, we should be delighted to hear from you.

University of Southampton Library Two Registers of Burials at the German Jews Burying Ground Great Synagogue London 1776 – 1810 with interments at the New Cemetery Ducking Pond Lane Bethnal Green (Brady Street) from 1790 Archives & MS: Ref MS 116/107 AJ]

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