The Love Story of Esterke and Kazimierz, King of Poland—New Perspectives

In: European Journal of Jewish Studies
Nathan Cohen
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This article reveals and discusses four forgotten and unknown literary versions of the love story between the Polish King Kazimierz the Great (1310–1370) and Esterke, a young Jewish maiden from Opoczno. A fundamental research study by Khone Shmeruk in the 1980s examined the reception and molding of the Esterke story in both Polish and Yiddish literary works and their intertextuality. This article will discuss and analyze two Hebrew and two Yiddish versions of the story and will put each of them in its contemporary Jewish socio-political and cultural context.

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