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Ludwik Lejzer Zamenhof

<span class='language-label'>Russian: Лазарь Маркович Заменгоф</span>, <span class='language-label'>Hebrew: לודוויג אליעזר זמנהוף</span>
Also Known As: "Eliezer Lewi Samenhof"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Białystok, Białystok, Podlaskie, Poland
Death: April 14, 1917 (57)
Warszawa, Warszawa, Mazowieckie, Poland
Place of Burial: Warszawa, Warszawa, Mazowieckie, Poland
Immediate Family:

Son of Marek Zamenhof and Rozalia Zamenhof
Husband of Klara Zamenhof
Father of Adam Zamenhof; Lidia Zamenhof and Zofia Zamenhof
Brother of Fanny Pikower; Gitla Augusta; Augusta Hermelin; Sora Dwora Zamenhof; Feliks Fabian Zamenhof and 7 others

Occupation: lekarz okulista
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Ludwik Zamenhof

Ludwik Lejzer Zamenhof (1859-1917), often credited as L. L. Zamenhof, was a Polish ophthalmologist and the inventor of the international language Esperanto, the most widely-used constructed international auxiliary language in the world. Zamenhof first developed the language in 1873 while still in school. He grew up fascinated by the idea of a world without war. He believed that this could happen with the help of a new international auxiliary language.[1] The language would be a tool to gather people together through neutral, fair, equitable communication. He successfully formed a community that continues today despite the World Wars of the 20th century. Also, it has developed like other languages, through the interaction and creativity of its users. In light of his achievements, and his support of intercultural dialogue, UNESCO selected Zamenhof as one of its eminent personalities of 2017, on the 100th anniversary of his death. Wikipedia EN


Cultural background

Zamenhof was born on December 15 (December 3 OS), 1859 in the town of Białystok in the Russian Empire (now part of Poland). He considered his native language to be his father's Russian[2], but he also spoke his mother's Yiddish natively; as he grew older, he spoke more Polish, and that became the native language of his children. His father was a teacher of German, and he also spoke that language fluently, though not as comfortably as Yiddish[dubious – discuss]. Later he learned French, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and English, and had an interest in Italian, Spanish and Lithuanian.

In addition to the Yiddish-speaking Jewish majority, the population of Białystok was made up of three other ethnic groups: Poles, Germans, and Belarusians. Zamenhof was saddened and frustrated by the many quarrels among these groups. He supposed that the main reason for the hate and prejudice lay in the mutual misunderstanding caused by the lack of one common language. If such a language existed, Zamenhof postulated, it could play the role of a neutral communication tool between people of different ethnic and linguistic backgrounds.

Work for an international language

As a student at secondary school in Warsaw, Zamenhof made attempts to create some kind of international language with a grammar that was very rich, but also very complex. When he later studied English, he decided that the international language must have a simpler grammar. Apart from his parents' native languages Russian and Yiddish and his adopted language Polish, his linguistics attempts were also aided by his mastering of German, a good passive understanding of Latin, Hebrew and French, and a basic knowledge of Greek, English and Italian.

By 1878, his project Lingwe uniwersala was almost finished. However, Zamenhof was too young then to publish his work. Soon after graduation from school he began to study medicine, first in Moscow, and later in Warsaw. In 1885, Zamenhof graduated from a university and began his practice as a doctor in Veisiejai and after 1886 as an ophthalmologist in Płock and Vienna. While healing people there he continued to work on his project of an international language.

For two years he tried to raise funds to publish a booklet describing the language until he received the financial help from his future wife's father. In 1887, the book titled Lingvo internacia: Antaŭparolo kaj plena lernolibro (International language: Foreword and complete textbook) was published in Russian under the pseudonym "Doktoro Esperanto" (Doctor Hopeful), from which the name of the language derives. For Zamenhof this language, far from being merely a communication tool, was a way of promoting the peaceful coexistence of different people and cultures.

Work on Yiddish language and Jewish issues

In 1879, Zamenhof wrote the first grammar of the Yiddish language, which he published in part years later in the Yiddish magazine Lebn un visnshaft. The complete original Russian text of this manuscript with parallel Esperanto translation was only published in 1982 (translated by Adolf Holzhaus in L. Zamenhof, provo de gramatiko de novjuda lingvo, Helsinki, p. 9-36). In this work, not only does he provide a review of Yiddish grammar, but also proposes its transition to the Latin script and other orthographic innovations. In the same period, Zamenhof wrote some other works in Yiddish, including perhaps the first survey of Yiddish poetics (see p. 50 in the above-cited book).

In 1882, a wave of pogroms in the Russian empire motivated Zamenhof to take part in the early Zionist movement, the Hibbat Zion. He left the movement in 1887, and in 1901 published a statement in Russian with the title Hillelism, in which he argued that the Zionist project could not solve the problems of the Jewish people.

In 1914, he politely declined an invitation to join a new organization of Jewish Esperantists, the TEHA. In his letter to the organizers, he said: "I am profoundly convinced that every nationalism offers humanity only the greatest unhappiness... It is true that the nationalism of oppressed peoples – as a natural self-defensive reaction – is much more excusable than the nationalism of peoples who oppress; but, if the nationalism of the strong is ignoble, the nationalism of the weak is imprudent; both give birth to and support each other..."

Among the many works Zamenhof translated into Esperanto is the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament.

Zamenhof died in Warsaw on April 14, 1917, and is buried in the Okopowa Street Jewish Cemetery in that city.

Religious philosophy

Besides his linguistic work, Zamenhof published a religious philosophy he called Homaranismo (loosely translated as humanitarianism), based on the principles and teachings of Hillel the Elder.

Children

Zamenhof and his wife Klara raised three children, a son, Adam, and two daughters, Sofia and Lidia. All three died in the Holocaust.

Lidia Zamenhof in particular took a keen interest in Esperanto, and as an adult became a teacher of the language, traveling through Europe and to America to teach classes in it. Through her friendship with Martha Root, Lidia accepted Bahá’u’lláh and became a member of the Bahá’í faith. As one of its social principles, the Bahá’í faith teaches that an auxiliary world language should be selected by the representatives of all the world's nations.

Name discrepancy

Zamenhof's parents gave him the Hebrew name Eliezer, which appeared on his birth certificate in its Yiddish form Leyzer. In his adolescence he used both Leyzer and the Russian equivalent Lazar (the form Lazarus is often used in English texts). In some Russian documents Lazar was followed by the patronymic Markovich.

While at university, Zamenhof began using the Russian name Lyudovik (often transcribed Ludovic; in English the form Ludwig is also used) in place of Lazar. When his brother Leon became a doctor and started signing his name "Dr L. Zamenhof", Ludwik reclaimed his birth name Lazar and from 1901 signed his name "Dr L. L. Zamenhof". The two L's do not seem to have specifically represented either name, and the order Ludwik Lazar is a modern convention.

Zamenhof may have chosen the name Ludwik in honor of Francis Lodwick (or Lodowyck), who in 1652 had published an early conlang proposal.

His family name was originally written Samenhof, in German orthography; the spelling Zamenhof reflects the romanization of the Yiddish spelling זאַמענהאָף, as well as the Esperanto and Polish spellings.

Honours and namesakes

In 1910, Zamenhof was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, by four British Members of Parliament (including James O'Grady, Philip Snowden) and Professor Stanley Lane Poole. (The Prize was instead awarded to the International Peace Bureau.) On the occasion of the 5th Universala Kongreso de Esperanto in Barcelona, Zamenhof was made a Commander of the Order of Isabella the Catholic by King Alfonso XIII of Spain.

The minor planet (1462) Zamenhof is named in his honor. It was discovered on February 6, 1938, by Yrjö Väisälä. Also, hundreds of city streets, parks, and bridges worldwide have been named after Zamenhof. In Lithuania, the best-known Zamenhof Street is in Kaunas, where he lived and owned a house for some time. There are others in France, Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic, Spain (mostly in Catalonia), Italy, Israel, and Brazil. There are Zamenhof Hills in Hungary and Brazil, and a Zamenhof Island in the Danube River.

In some Israeli cities, street signs identify Esperanto's creator and give his birth and death dates, but refer to him solely by his Jewish name Eliezer (a variant of which, El'azar, is the origin of Lazarus). Zamenhof is honored as a deity by the Japanese religion Oomoto, which encourages the use of Esperanto among its followers. Also, a genus of lichen has been named Zamenhofia rosei in his honour.

His birthday, December 15, is celebrated annually as Zamenhof Day by users of Esperanto. On December 15, 2009, Esperanto's green-starred flag flew on the Google search web page, in a commemorative Google Doodle to mark Zamenhof's 150th birthday.

The house of the Zamenhof family, dedicated to Ludwik Zamenhof and the Białystok Esperanto Centre, are sites of the Jewish Heritage Trail in Białystok, which was opened in June 2008 by volunteers at The University of Białystok Foundation.

About לודוויג אליעזר זמנהוף (עברית)

ד"ר אליעזר לודוויג זמנהוף

' (בפולנית: Ludwik Łazarz Zamenhof, ביידיש: לייזער לוי זאַמענהאָף, באספרנטו: Ludoviko Lazaro Zamenhofo "לודוביקו לזארו זמנהופו"; 15 בדצמבר 1859 - 14 באפריל 1917) היה רופא יהודי-פולני, יוצר שפת האספרנטו, שמטרתה – קירוב לבבות בין בני אדם דוברי שפות שונות, באמצעות שפה נייטרלית. אספרנטו הפכה לשפה המתוכננת המדוברת ביותר בעולם.

זמנהוף היה רופא עיניים ובלשן חובב. השפות שדיברו בביתו היו יידיש ורוסית, אך הוא דיבר באופן שוטף גם פולנית וגרמנית. מאוחר יותר למד צרפתית, לטינית, יוונית, עברית, אנגלית ואת השפה המתוכננת וולאפיק. הוא התעניין גם בשפות איטלקית, ספרדית וליטאית.

תוכן עניינים 1 חייו 2 משפחתו 3 הנצחה 4 ראו גם 5 קישורים חיצוניים 6 הערות שוליים חייו זמנהוף נולד בעיר ביאליסטוק שבגבולה המערבי של האימפריה הרוסית, בתחום המושב (כיום בפולין), כבכור בין 9 ילדים. אביו (כמו סבו) היה מורה לשפות. הוריו התכוונו לקרוא לו אליעזר מרקוביץ'[%D7%93%D7%A8%D7%95%D7%A9 מקור], אולם בגלל חוקי השלטון הרוסי, הם נתנו לו גם שם נוצרי, לודביק[1], שהופיע בתעודת הזהות שלו.

אביו של לודביק, מארק זמנהוף, נולד ב-27 בינואר 1837 בעיר סובאלק שבפולין. הוא עבר לביאליסטוק בסביבות 1857, ומצא בה עבודה כמורה פרטי לשפות בביתה של משפחת זבלודובסקי, המשפחה המקומית העשירה, שם הכיר את אשתו, רוזאליה סופר. כדי לפרנס את משפחתו, הוא הקים בית ספר משלו, "תורה בדרך ארץ". לודביק זמנהוף נולד ב-1859 בדירה קטנה בקומה השנייה של בית מעץ ברחוב ז'לונה. מאוחר יותר, ב-11 ביולי 1919, ביוזמת יעקב שפירו, שונה שמו של הרחוב לרחוב "לודביק זמנהוף".

לזמנהוף היו שתי שפות אם: רוסית, ככל הנראה השפה שבה דיבר בעיקר עם אביו, ויידיש, בה דיבר עם אמו. למרות האיסור על דיבור בפולנית, שהטילה האימפריה הרוסית ששלטה באזור באותה תקופה, למד זמנהוף את השפה שבפועל הייתה מדוברת בביאליסטוק, בגיל צעיר.

אוכלוסיית העיר ביאליסטוק, שהייתה באותו זמן תחת שלטון האימפריה הרוסית, כללה לאומים שונים: פולנים, רוסים, בלרוסים, גרמנים, ליטאים, טטארים, אך הרוב (68%) היו יהודים דוברי יידיש. זמנהוף התמלא תסכול בגלל הסכסוכים הרבים שהיו בין הקבוצות השונות. הוא הבין את הקושי האובייקטיבי שיש לבני האדם בלימוד מגוון השפות של שכניהם, והעריך שהשנאה והדעות הקדומות נובעות במידה רבה מאי-הבנות שהן כורח המציאות בהיעדרה של "שפת גשר" משותפת.

ב-1873 עזבה המשפחה את העיר והתיישבה בוורשה. בעת שהיה תלמיד גימנסיה בוורשה, ניסה זמנהוף ליצור שפה בינלאומית; שפה זו הייתה בעלת דקדוק עשיר מאוד, אך גם מסובך. כשלמד אנגלית (יחד עם לטינית, צרפתית, עברית ויוונית) הגיע למסקנה שהשפה הבינלאומית צריכה להיות בעלת דקדוק פשוט יחסית, ובעלת מערך רחב של סיומות וקידומות, כדי שיהיה אפשר ליצור בעזרתן צורות שונות ושימושים שונים לאותה מילה.

בשנת 1878 כמעט שהשלים את הפרויקט הלשוני הראשוני – Lingwe uniwersala – אך הוא היה צעיר מדי מכדי להוציאו לאור. לאחר סיום הלימודים החל ללמוד רפואה באוניברסיטת מוסקבה, ואחר-כך באוניברסיטת ורשה. קיימת התכתבות שלו מאותה תקופה עם חברי ביל"ו, שבה נזף בהם על חוסר מעשיותם. זמנהוף האמין שניתן יהיה להקים אוטונומיה יהודית בארצות הברית, אך בעקבות הביקורת שנמתחה עליו ועל יתר חסידי "הפתרון האמריקני", הפך חובב ציון פעיל, ואף ייסד את אגודת הסטודנטים "שארית-ישראל" בוורשה. מאוחר יותר, לאחר פרסום אספרנטו, עתיד היה זמנהוף לעבור לרעיון לאומי אוניברסלי יותר, וליצור את אמונת ה"הִלליזם" (Hilelismo), שתתבסס על תורת המוסר האנושית הבסיסית של הלל הזקן: "מה ששנוא עליך לא תעשה לחברך".

בימי לימודיו באוניברסיטה היה זמנהוף חבר לפרק זמן קצר באגודה ציונית שהוקמה במטרה לגייס כספים ליישוב ארץ ישראל, ואף עמד בראשה[2]. בשנת 1885 סיים את לימודיו, והחל לעבוד כרופא עיניים. במקביל, המשיך לעבוד על פרויקט השפה הבינלאומית. במשך שנתיים חיפש מימון לפרסום חוברת הסבר על השפה, עד שקיבל את העזרה הכספית מחותנו לעתיד. בשנת 1887 יצא לאור לבסוף ספרו "Lingvo internacia. Antaŭparolo kaj plena lernolibro" ("שפה בינלאומית. הקדמה וספר לימוד מלא"), תחת שם העט דוקטורו אספרנטו ("הדוקטור המקווה"), ומכאן מקור שמה של השפה החדשה.

עבור זמנהוף, השפה החדשה שימשה לא רק ככלי תקשורת, אלא גם כלי להפצת הרעיון של דו-קיום בשלום של אנשים מתרבויות שונות. זמנהוף ויתר מראש על זכויות יוצרים כלשהן על השפה, כי ראה בה נחלת דובריה בעולם כולו, כמו שפה לאומית כלשהי.

זמנהוף תרגם לאספרנטו יצירות מופת רבות מן הספרות העולמית (כולל התנ"ך כולו – משימה שעליה שקד כל חייו). כן חיבר שירה מקורית, ובכך הראה שהשפה מסוגלת להביע את כל קשת הרגשות האנושיים, ולשמש גם כשפה ספרותית. בעקבותיו קמו סופרים רבים, אשר העשירו את התרבות האספרנטית ביצירות בעלות ערך, שרבות מהן תורגמו לשפות לאומיות.

ב-1905 נאם בקונגרס העולמי הראשון לאספרנטו, שהתקיים בעיר הצרפתית בולון-סור-מר. קונגרס זה הוכיח לראשונה שניתן לקיים תקשורת באספרנטו מדוברת (עד אז התקיימו קשרים בינלאומיים באמצעות אספרנטו בעיקר בכתב, או במועדונים מקומיים). בשנת 1908 קמה אגודת האספרנטו העולמית, UEA (ראשי תיבות: Universala Esperanto-Asocio), אך זמנהוף סירב לקחת חלק פעיל בהנהגת הארגון, באמרו כי הוא רק "אחד מהאספרנטיסטים".

ד"ר זמנהוף נפטר בוורשה ב-14 באפריל 1917, ונקבר בבית הקברות היהודי בוורשה. מדי שנה עולים לקברו דוברי אספרנטו וחובביה.

משפחתו לאליעזר וקלרה זמנהוף נולדו שלושה ילדים: אדם, סופיה ולידיה. שתי בנותיו נשבו בקסם האספרנטו והפכו בבגרותן לתומכות נלהבות של השפה ולמורות ללימוד אספרנטו באירופה ובארצות הברית. הן הצטרפו לדת הבהאית. אספרנטו עמדה אז על הפרק כשפה הבינלאומית עבור דת זו, אך בהמשך נבחרה האנגלית לשפת הבהאים העולמית, כך עד היום.

שלושת ילדיו של זמנהוף נספו כולם בשואה, אך נכדו, לואי-כריסטוף זלסקי-זמנהוף (בנו של אדם), ניצל והתגורר בצרפת החל משנות ה-60. בשנת 2019 הוא הלך לעולמו, בגיל 94.

אחיינו, סטיבן זמנהוף (אס') (בנו של הנריק, אחיו של אליעזר לודוויג זמנהוף), יליד 1911, היגר לארצות הברית בשנת 1939 שם היה פרופסור לגנטיקה וביוכימיה. נפטר ב-1998[3].

הנצחה רחובות על שמו ועל שם יצירתו אספרנטו קיימים בערים גדולות רבות בעולם, בהן גם בישראל. בולים בנושאים אלה יצאו בעשרות מדינות (בישראל יצא הבול לזכרו בדצמבר 2006).

ד"ר זמנהוף נחשב למעין אל בדת היפנית אומוטו, שאספרנטו היא חלק מעקרונותיה, ורבבות מאמיניה למדו את השפה.

כל שנה ב-15 בדצמבר נחגג לזכרו יום זמנהוף. ב-2009, כאשר מלאו 150 שנה להולדתו של זמנהוף, הדבר הונצח בדף הבית של מנוע החיפוש גוגל, שהציג את דגל תנועת האספרנטו.

ראו גם אספרנטו הילליסמו / הומארניסמו - תורת ההומאניזם של זמנהוף בלשנות קז'ימייז' ביין קישורים חיצוניים מיזמי קרן ויקימדיה ויקישיתוף תמונות ומדיה בוויקישיתוף: אליעזר לודוויג זמנהוף אליעזר לודוויג זמנהוף , במהדורת 1901–1906 של ה-Jewish Encyclopedia (באנגלית) איתי נבו, ‏הרופא שניסה לאחד את העולם , במדור "היום לפני במדע " באתר של מכון דוידסון לחינוך מדעי, 14 באפריל 2017 דוד מלמד, שפה אחת לכל העמים , מקור ראשון, מוסף "שבת", 16 ביולי 2017 קטע קול פרק בפודקאסט "מינהר הזמן" בנושא "ממציא השפה הבינלאומית" באתר "כאן" https://he.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D7%90%D7%9C%D7%99%D7%A2%D7%96%D7%A8_%D7%9C%D7%95%D7%93%D7%95%D7%95%D7%99%D7%92_%D7%96%D7%9E%D7%A0%D7%94%D7%95%D7%A3

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Ludwik Lejzer Zamenhof (1859-1917), often credited as L. L. Zamenhof, was a Polish ophthalmologist and the inventor of the international language Esperanto, the most widely-used constructed international auxiliary language in the world. Zamenhof first developed the language in 1873 while still in school. He grew up fascinated by the idea of a world without war. He believed that this could happen with the help of a new international auxiliary language.[1] The language would be a tool to gather people together through neutral, fair, equitable communication. He successfully formed a community that continues today despite the World Wars of the 20th century. Also, it has developed like other languages, through the interaction and creativity of its users. In light of his achievements, and his support of intercultural dialogue, UNESCO selected Zamenhof as one of its eminent personalities of 2017, on the 100th anniversary of his death. Wikipedia EN


Cultural background

Zamenhof was born on December 15 (December 3 OS), 1859 in the town of Białystok in the Russian Empire (now part of Poland). He considered his native language to be his father's Russian[2], but he also spoke his mother's Yiddish natively; as he grew older, he spoke more Polish, and that became the native language of his children. His father was a teacher of German, and he also spoke that language fluently, though not as comfortably as Yiddish[dubious – discuss]. Later he learned French, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and English, and had an interest in Italian, Spanish and Lithuanian.

In addition to the Yiddish-speaking Jewish majority, the population of Białystok was made up of three other ethnic groups: Poles, Germans, and Belarusians. Zamenhof was saddened and frustrated by the many quarrels among these groups. He supposed that the main reason for the hate and prejudice lay in the mutual misunderstanding caused by the lack of one common language. If such a language existed, Zamenhof postulated, it could play the role of a neutral communication tool between people of different ethnic and linguistic backgrounds.

Work for an international language

As a student at secondary school in Warsaw, Zamenhof made attempts to create some kind of international language with a grammar that was very rich, but also very complex. When he later studied English, he decided that the international language must have a simpler grammar. Apart from his parents' native languages Russian and Yiddish and his adopted language Polish, his linguistics attempts were also aided by his mastering of German, a good passive understanding of Latin, Hebrew and French, and a basic knowledge of Greek, English and Italian.

By 1878, his project Lingwe uniwersala was almost finished. However, Zamenhof was too young then to publish his work. Soon after graduation from school he began to study medicine, first in Moscow, and later in Warsaw. In 1885, Zamenhof graduated from a university and began his practice as a doctor in Veisiejai and after 1886 as an ophthalmologist in Płock and Vienna. While healing people there he continued to work on his project of an international language.

For two years he tried to raise funds to publish a booklet describing the language until he received the financial help from his future wife's father. In 1887, the book titled Lingvo internacia: Antaŭparolo kaj plena lernolibro (International language: Foreword and complete textbook) was published in Russian under the pseudonym "Doktoro Esperanto" (Doctor Hopeful), from which the name of the language derives. For Zamenhof this language, far from being merely a communication tool, was a way of promoting the peaceful coexistence of different people and cultures.

Work on Yiddish language and Jewish issues

In 1879, Zamenhof wrote the first grammar of the Yiddish language, which he published in part years later in the Yiddish magazine Lebn un visnshaft. The complete original Russian text of this manuscript with parallel Esperanto translation was only published in 1982 (translated by Adolf Holzhaus in L. Zamenhof, provo de gramatiko de novjuda lingvo, Helsinki, p. 9-36). In this work, not only does he provide a review of Yiddish grammar, but also proposes its transition to the Latin script and other orthographic innovations. In the same period, Zamenhof wrote some other works in Yiddish, including perhaps the first survey of Yiddish poetics (see p. 50 in the above-cited book).

In 1882, a wave of pogroms in the Russian empire motivated Zamenhof to take part in the early Zionist movement, the Hibbat Zion. He left the movement in 1887, and in 1901 published a statement in Russian with the title Hillelism, in which he argued that the Zionist project could not solve the problems of the Jewish people.

In 1914, he politely declined an invitation to join a new organization of Jewish Esperantists, the TEHA. In his letter to the organizers, he said: "I am profoundly convinced that every nationalism offers humanity only the greatest unhappiness... It is true that the nationalism of oppressed peoples – as a natural self-defensive reaction – is much more excusable than the nationalism of peoples who oppress; but, if the nationalism of the strong is ignoble, the nationalism of the weak is imprudent; both give birth to and support each other..."

Among the many works Zamenhof translated into Esperanto is the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament.

Zamenhof died in Warsaw on April 14, 1917, and is buried in the Okopowa Street Jewish Cemetery in that city.

Religious philosophy

Besides his linguistic work, Zamenhof published a religious philosophy he called Homaranismo (loosely translated as humanitarianism), based on the principles and teachings of Hillel the Elder.

Children

Zamenhof and his wife Klara raised three children, a son, Adam, and two daughters, Sofia and Lidia. All three died in the Holocaust.

Lidia Zamenhof in particular took a keen interest in Esperanto, and as an adult became a teacher of the language, traveling through Europe and to America to teach classes in it. Through her friendship with Martha Root, Lidia accepted Bahá’u’lláh and became a member of the Bahá’í faith. As one of its social principles, the Bahá’í faith teaches that an auxiliary world language should be selected by the representatives of all the world's nations.

Name discrepancy

Zamenhof's parents gave him the Hebrew name Eliezer, which appeared on his birth certificate in its Yiddish form Leyzer. In his adolescence he used both Leyzer and the Russian equivalent Lazar (the form Lazarus is often used in English texts). In some Russian documents Lazar was followed by the patronymic Markovich.

While at university, Zamenhof began using the Russian name Lyudovik (often transcribed Ludovic; in English the form Ludwig is also used) in place of Lazar. When his brother Leon became a doctor and started signing his name "Dr L. Zamenhof", Ludwik reclaimed his birth name Lazar and from 1901 signed his name "Dr L. L. Zamenhof". The two L's do not seem to have specifically represented either name, and the order Ludwik Lazar is a modern convention.

Zamenhof may have chosen the name Ludwik in honor of Francis Lodwick (or Lodowyck), who in 1652 had published an early conlang proposal.

His family name was originally written Samenhof, in German orthography; the spelling Zamenhof reflects the romanization of the Yiddish spelling זאַמענהאָף, as well as the Esperanto and Polish spellings.

Honours and namesakes

In 1910, Zamenhof was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, by four British Members of Parliament (including James O'Grady, Philip Snowden) and Professor Stanley Lane Poole. (The Prize was instead awarded to the International Peace Bureau.) On the occasion of the 5th Universala Kongreso de Esperanto in Barcelona, Zamenhof was made a Commander of the Order of Isabella the Catholic by King Alfonso XIII of Spain.

The minor planet (1462) Zamenhof is named in his honor. It was discovered on February 6, 1938, by Yrjö Väisälä. Also, hundreds of city streets, parks, and bridges worldwide have been named after Zamenhof. In Lithuania, the best-known Zamenhof Street is in Kaunas, where he lived and owned a house for some time. There are others in France, Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic, Spain (mostly in Catalonia), Italy, Israel, and Brazil. There are Zamenhof Hills in Hungary and Brazil, and a Zamenhof Island in the Danube River.

In some Israeli cities, street signs identify Esperanto's creator and give his birth and death dates, but refer to him solely by his Jewish name Eliezer (a variant of which, El'azar, is the origin of Lazarus). Zamenhof is honored as a deity by the Japanese religion Oomoto, which encourages the use of Esperanto among its followers. Also, a genus of lichen has been named Zamenhofia rosei in his honour.

His birthday, December 15, is celebrated annually as Zamenhof Day by users of Esperanto. On December 15, 2009, Esperanto's green-starred flag flew on the Google search web page, in a commemorative Google Doodle to mark Zamenhof's 150th birthday.

The house of the Zamenhof family, dedicated to Ludwik Zamenhof and the Białystok Esperanto Centre, are sites of the Jewish Heritage Trail in Białystok, which was opened in June 2008 by volunteers at The University of Białystok Foundation.

About Ludwik Zamenhof (Polski)

Ludwik Łazarz Zamenhof, właściwie Eliezer Lewi Samenhof (1859-1917) – polski lekarz okulista żydowskiego pochodzenia, inicjator esperanto; ośmiokrotnie nominowany do Pokojowej Nagrody Nobla (1907, 1909, 1910, 1913, 1914, 1915, 1916, 1917). Wikipedia PL

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Ludwik Zamenhof's Timeline

1859
December 15, 1859
Białystok, Białystok, Podlaskie, Poland
1888
1888
1889
December 13, 1889
1904
January 29, 1904
Warszawa, Warszawa, Mazowieckie, Poland
1917
April 14, 1917
Age 57
Warszawa, Warszawa, Mazowieckie, Poland
????
Warszawa, Warszawa, Mazowieckie, Poland