Mendele Moykher-Sforim (1835-1917)
Mendele Moicher Sforim ( = "Mendele the book peddler,") was most likely born 21. st. of December 1835 and died in December 1917. His real name was Shalom Jacob Abramovitz. He, more than anyone else, was the founder of modern Yiddish literature.
Mendele was born to a poor family in Kopyl near Minsk. His father, Chaim Moyshe Broyde, died shortly after he became a Bar Mitzvah. He studied in yeshivoth in Slutsk and Vilna until he was 17.
Mendele next traveled extensively around Belarus, Ukraine and Lithuania, at the mercy of an abusive beggar named Avreml Khromoy (Russian for "Avreml the Lame"; Avreml would later become the source for the title character of Fishke der Krumer, Fishke the crooked). Around 1854, Mendele settled in Kamenets-Podolskiy, where he got aquanted with the writer and poet Avrom Ber Gotlober, who introduced him to secular culture, philosophy, literature, history, Russian and other languages. Among his most famous works are: Fathers and sons, Fishke the Lame, The Mare and The Travels of Binyamin III.