20 Yiddish words to spritz into your copy

You’d have to be meshuga not to expand your vocabulary with a schtickle of this wonderful, colorful language.

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Emerging among 10th-century Jews living in Germany, the language is a delicious mishmash derived from a stew of Hebrew, Aramaic, German and Slavic words. Today, there are fewer than 155,000 Yiddish speakers in America, though the language has made a profound impact on our lexicon.

Lest you start kvetching, let’s launch right into a collection of delightful Yiddish terms to spritz into your writing:

1. Schtickle—a small amount, a little bit of something.

Chrissie, give me a schtickle of fluoride.”

2. Schluff—a nap.

I’m going to need a brief schluff before this bris.

3. Schvitz—to sweat.

It’s so hot, I’m schvitzing over here!

4. Kvell—to swell with pride.

Mona was kvelling after her son won the award.

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