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On the true meaning of the name Jabberwocky - Impressions and Expressions of Ijon
March 10th, 2005
05:41 pm

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On the true meaning of the name Jabberwocky
At Sternberg's seminar on Alice in Wonderland, I've learned of a book called Lewis Carroll's 'Through the Looking Glass' Decoded, by one Abraham Ettleson (pub. Philosophical Library (1966)), in which the author purports to unlock the mysteries coded in TtLG by Carroll, through the wisdom of the Kabbalah. You see where this is going, yes?

So, Ettleson teaches us that the name Jabberwocky, the most famous element in the book, is in fact a reference the founder of Hassidic Judaism - Rabbi Israel Baal-Shem-Tov. Really! Observe:

1. Jabberwocky = jabber + wocky
2. reverse both elements: rebbaj + ykcow
3. rebbaj is, clearly, rabbi.
4. ykcow is, obviously, the Hebrew name Yaakov.
5. The Biblical Yaakov (Jacob) received the name Israel after fighting God's angel, hence Yaakov = Israel.
6. Rabbi Israel is what the contemporary disciples called the Baal-Shem-Tov.
7. QED: Jabberwocky = Rabbi Israel Baal-Shem-Tov.

Edifying, isn't it?

Sternberg snarkily added: "Regrettably, the book is out of print and I could not secure a copy for my private study."

Current Mood: amused
Current Music: Berry Sakharoff -- Avak Banaalayim

(12 comments | Leave a comment)

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From:lilacsinmarch
Date:March 10th, 2005 04:10 pm (UTC)
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Rabbi Israel Baal-Shem-Tov??? *Faints*
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From:gaal
Date:March 10th, 2005 05:28 pm (UTC)
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Ettleson fails to point out who is at the heart of the Baashat's name.
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From:ygurvitz
Date:March 10th, 2005 05:30 pm (UTC)

I'll see your Carrol and raise you Jack

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I think there's a slight misunderstanding here: we are talking about a Rabbi Jacob indeed, but it's not the Baal Shed (as the Litwics used to call him). Rather, it is Rabbi Yaakov Itzhak, a Xassidic guru who single-handedly (as narrated by Martin Bober) defeated Napoleon.

However, it all pales before a book whose name eludes me, which claims that Carrol was
[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<ta-ta-ta-tam!>') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

I think there's a slight misunderstanding here: we are talking about a Rabbi Jacob indeed, but it's not the Baal Shed (as the Litwics used to call him). Rather, it is Rabbi Yaakov Itzhak, a Xassidic guru who single-handedly (as narrated by Martin Bober) defeated Napoleon.

However, it all pales before a book whose name eludes me, which claims that Carrol was <ta-ta-ta-TAM!> Jack the Ripper himself, as any truly learned man can see from his Carrol's poetry.
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From:antinous
Date:March 11th, 2005 08:50 am (UTC)

Re: I'll see your Carrol and raise you Jack

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It's Yaakov Frank, actually!
From:(Anonymous)
Date:March 14th, 2005 11:42 am (UTC)

Re: I'll see your Carrol and raise you Jack

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Richard Wallace, in "Jack the Ripper, Light-Hearted Friend", anagrams this out of the Jabberwocky:
Bet I beat my glands til,
With hand-sword I slay the evil gender.
A slimey theme; borrow gloves,
And masturbate the hog more!

In splendid and worthwhile retribution, Guy Jacobson and Francis Heaney anagrammed this out of the first paragraph in Wallace's "study":
The truth is this: I, Richard Wallace, stabbed and killed a muted Nicole Brown in cold blood, severing her throat with my trusty shiv's strokes. I set up Orenthal James Simpson, who is utterly innocent of this murder. P.S. I also wrote Shakespeare's sonnets, and a lot of Francis Bacon's works too.

I'd say more, but unca Cecil did it for me:
http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a970307a.html

Oh, and the standard repository, of course:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_the_Ripper%2C_Light-Hearted_Friend


I.
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From:atzmi
Date:March 10th, 2005 06:06 pm (UTC)

and one can only wonder...

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does "Humpty-Dumpty" refer to the former Knesset Member Avraham Shapira from Agudat Israel? And what about the mad hatter?
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From:jdm314
Date:March 10th, 2005 06:12 pm (UTC)
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Heh, cool!
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From:cleobatya
Date:March 10th, 2005 07:19 pm (UTC)
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i always thought it was something like that.
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From:libix
Date:March 10th, 2005 10:31 pm (UTC)
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i don't believe you actually went to look for that book....i believe Sternberg mentioned it in order to spare us the stupidity
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From:ijon
Date:March 13th, 2005 10:32 am (UTC)
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Who says I looked for it? :)
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From:mux2000
Date:March 11th, 2005 02:02 pm (UTC)
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Did you know the number of the needles on Neo's body in that scene after he'd been saved from the matrix was exactly 365, which is the number of pressure points in Chinese acupuncture, which is also the number of tendons in Judaism?

And the white rabbit on the shoulder at the first scene is a Kabbalah symbol meaning innocence.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:March 31st, 2005 01:41 pm (UTC)

Ettleson's Opus

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As of this morning, there are 5 copies available
from abebooks.com, several signed by the author.

Peter
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