Colophon: Tefilah le-Moshe (Prayer of Moses)

Gele bat Moses ben Abraham Ger


All the letters in this beautiful new prayer book,
from beginning to end, I set with my own hands.
Gele, daughter of R. Moses the printer
and Frau Freide, who bore me among ten children, may they live long lives.
I am a maiden not yet twelve years old.
Do not be amazed that I must work.
For a long time
the tender and delicate daughter of Israel sits in exile.
Years come and go
and still we receive no word of the arrival of the redemption.
We cry out and plead with God all year long;
may it be that our prayers will come before God.
Although I must be still and silent.
I and my father’s house must not speak a great deal.
How it is for all the Jewish people,
so it will be for us.
As the verse says.
They will rejoice,
those who mourn the destruction of Jerusalem.
And those that have suffered greatly in exile
will once more be glad at the redemption.
Amen, so may it be.

Translated by


Gele bat Moses ben Abraham Ger, “Colophon” in Tefilah le-Moshe (Prayer of Moses) (Halle: 1710). Republished in: Yidishe Dikhterins: Antologye, ed. Ezra Korman (Chicago: L.M. Shtayn, 1928), 18–19, 341.

Published in: The Posen Library of Jewish Culture and Civilization, vol. 5.

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