Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Zamenof - Esperanto and Real Estate

There's nothing special about Zamenof street , except its location - in the very heart of Tel Aviv city, close to every spot and attraction - and this location makes it greatly valuable in terms of urban real estate.
The above street is named after Dr. Ludwig Lazarus Zamenof, the creator of the universal language Esperanto.

Dr. Zamenof   (Web picture)

The tel- avivian Zamenof street is just one of many streets (as well as parks, buildings, cultural centers) in the world, named after Dr. Zamenof, the polish jewish physician (oculist) and linguist who has dedicated most of his life to the creation and promotion of Esperanto. The latter is not a widely spoken language, but it's still learned and used by a few million people around the world.

Zamenof was born in the town of Bialistok (now Poland, then part of Russia).  There were at least four languages spoken in his native town (russian, polish, german, yiddish) and he attributed the quarrels among the various ethnical groups to their different linguistic and cultural backgrounds. Hence the idea of a common international language.

Zamenof street in Tel Aviv is a side, quiet, street tucked between the famous Dizengoff square and Shderot Hen boulevard, and crossed by the lively commercial street King George. It has various types of residential buildings , some of them old Bachaus style houses with round balconies; it has  a Post Office branch, a health Clinic, two modest hotels, an indian restaurant named "Tandoori". Everyday needs can be met here by walking and biking despite the proximity to public transport. 

Bauhaus style old building 

Hotel Cinema

two bronze cats at the entrance of Unique Hotel

There's a certain irony in the fact that a street where only those with a lot of money can buy a home , bears the name of a person who strove for removing barriers among people ( language barrier, class barrier) and help make a more egalitarian world.


  1. Irony, indeed. Once again you have taught me a piece of history that I did not know. What an insightful person Dr. Zamenof was. I have often engaged in discussions about the evolution of Russia and the single-most barrier to its great power being the fact that the country enveloped so many various cultures and languages. Dr. Zamenof seems to agree. When we cannot understand what others are trying to say there can be no common ground. Having said that, I would really hate to see cultures and their languages lost simply for the sake of commonality. Seems to be a Catch-22, should the good of the majority be realized at the expense of the few? Goodness, this seems to be an issue being faced by many countries in the world today, including the United States.

  2. Thanks for sharing this interesting piece of information !

  3. You show an attractive street, I would like to see it in person!

    I had heard of Esperanto, but not its history, before. It is a noble idea, to attempt to bring people together in peace, and creating a common language would perhaps help. However, even people with the same culture and language frequently have trouble getting along peacefully with each other, so I am sure that more would need to be done.

  4. I wodner whether this language is still popular, I heard about people lerning it but it was like ~20 years ago

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  5. What a beautiful place with old trees, clean streets,and cat statues. Love it. Sounds like the Dr. had a good idea, though the irony is there.

  6. I'd like to respond to the comment that "I would really hate to see cultures and their languages lost simply for the sake of commonality". I agree and I speak Esperanto.

    The aim of Esperanto is to serve as an international auxiliary language, as a second language for us all, and not to replace national or ethnic tongues.

    In reply to Ola: I hope you'll allow me to add that Esperanto is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. That's quite an achievement for what started as the idea of just one good man. It has survived wars and strikes and economic crises, and continues to attract young learners.

  7. Duta, you post such interesting things!
    Well done! It is an irony. The cosmic joker.
    Greetings from Cottage Country!

  8. Hi DUTA,
    I'll have to come back and catch up on some of your most recent posts, but I did want to tell you that I've given you an award on my blog if you would like to come and accept it.

    But I will be back soon, things have just been really busy in my little world!

  9. C Hummel Kornell a/k/a C Hummel Wilson,

    Yes, Dr. Zamenof did have great insight.
    Countries in the world of today are multi ethnical and multi lingual and that poses a lot of problems which sometimes seem unsolvable.

    R. Ramakrishnan,

    You're welcome. I'm glad you find this post interesting.


    I do agree with your opinion about Zamenof street and about the idea behind a common language.


    They say that many of the Esperanto learners and speakers are concentrated in Japan, Korea, Brazil, Bulgaria, and...your country Poland.

  10. Janie B,

    The street is indeed beautiful and so is D. Zamenof's idea of an universal language.

    Bill Chapman,

    I grealy appreciate your clarifications and admire the fact that you're a speaker of Esperanto.

    Jenn Jilks,

    Thank you or your kind words. The irony's there, but that's how it is with most things in life.


    Yes, please do come back!
    Thanks for the award. I'm deeply honored.

  11. Well I'm back and as always so happy to come and soak in your writings. This is a very interesting post. I have to admit I was ignorant of what Esperanto was/is, but since I have the world at my fingertips...I googled it.

    I watched a cute little youtube video showing Kelly Clarkson learning a little Esperanto on the Paul O'Grady Show. Sounds very much like french.

    Here in California we have a form of Esperanto in that a lot of people are becoming more fluent in Spanglish, a mix of Spanish and English. Language is something that will constantly be evolving, but it is hoped that cultures retain their own languages as well.

  12. interesting information. I would like to hear Esperanto spoken. The restaurant is interesting. The story is that when Armstrong and Aldrin stepped on the surface of moon they heard somebody calling out "tea, tea...". they looked back and found a Malayali (person from Kerala) running a tea shop there...

  13. This street is pretty with the trees lining it...the cats are neat at the hotel

  14. Bonan Tagon, Duta! :)

    Even thought his take on a new, constructed language was faulty, I really liked his idea.
    After all it is true that diefferent nations, language, teraditions etc... do the opposite of uniting us.

    And ironic indeed, I guess the poor man would give them his piece of mind if he was still alive. :(

    Thank you for this beautiful post with all the lovely images.

  15. Alicia,

    Welcome again!
    Spanglish - that sounds very interesting to me. It seems daily life brings with it a new, natural language in California.


    I must admit I've never heard Esperanto spoken. Nice story the one with the Malayali on the moon. Thank you for sharing it.


    It's a good idea - the cat sculptures at the entrance. After tking a lookat the cats, the guests enter the hotel with a friendly smile on their face.


    Bonan Tagon....is this in Esperanto?

    I agree with you that the idea behind Esperanto is great but,after all ,it's an artificially designed language and only a few millions got caught by it.

  16. I love where your stories and pictures take us, Duta. Unfortunately, life is full of irony. I had never heard of Esperanto, and will Google this when I'm done.

  17. @Duta - Yes it does mean "Good Day" in Esperanto.

    I once was trying to learn it, but after a few days real life & work made me stop.
    Though it's an easy language I have to say.

    Well, if Zamenhof was still alive & spreading Esperanto these days via the Internet, then I guess he would have a lot more success with his utopic dreams. ;)

  18. You teach me more with every post. It does sound great to have a language that all could understand without giving up their language. I like those rounded balconies, as it make a nice transition to the building. I need those cats for my front entrance. Life in general is Irony. Peace

  19. What wonderful architecture. I know I can always come away from your blog with something "new" that I've learned! Love the bronze cats at the hotel entrance.

  20. Bica,

    I'm glad my little post is a trigger to your decision to "google" Esperanto. This langage and its creator are a worthy topic.


    Thanks for your reply. You're right, of course, about the Internet as an effective means of spreading a language like Esperanto nowadays.

    Lady Di Tn,

    It seems we two have the same taste; I like rounded balconies too.
    "Life in general is Irony" - that's a thought-provoking statement.


    We learn new things in life all the time, and that's the beauty of it.

  21. I love the over-all ambiance of the community. It has a closely-knit neighborhood vibe in it. The building architecture is beautiful too. It would be like personal investing living in that community.

  22. That building with the round balconies is beautiful, very nice street. I have been watching the news for the East and it scares me.
    Why can't they settle down and live in peace? Anyway, about your comment on economics, I have watched prices sore and the loaft of bread I bought a few years back at 75 cents is now $6 it is insane.
    The youth doesn't realize what has happened.
    PS I ame walking with a cane now.
    My Daughter is moving up to Maine.

  23. I always love your informative posts! Thanks!
    until next time... nel

  24. This sounds exactly like the type of character I need for one of my stories! I always find it so amazing how history is full of lessons we tend to respect, enjoy, yet ignore.

    As usual, the point of view of your photos captured my attention. Great post!

  25. justsoyouknow,

    Yes, it is a good place to invest in. I also like its "over-all ambiance" and "closely-knit neighborhood".

    La Petite Gallery,

    Wonderful news!
    1. You're already able to walk after the surgery.
    2. Your lovely daughter is moving up to Maine, where you reside.


    Thank you. I hope my posts always bring some information that could interest my readers.
    Tanya Reimer,

    History is full of characters of all kinds: interesting, mysterious,valiant.. you name it. Zamenof is indeed a character to read about and to remember.

  26. Yes, irony. Thoughtful post. Well done. We have a 5km trip to the nearby town.

  27. Jenn Jilks,

    Thank you for your kind words.
    Have a nice, safe trip to the nearby town!

  28. It seems ironical that a street which is otherwise inhabited by the most affluent sections of the society bears the name of this great man.

  29. P.N. Subramanian,

    Nevertheless, I guess he wouldn"t have minded it.
    Zamenof loved people and sought to do whatever possible to bridge upon the differences among them.

  30. Totally love your travel log postcard of this lovely place!!!

  31. Angelina,

    Thank you. I 'm glad you love my post and the place it displays.

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  33. Esperanto is the most useful language in the world for those who make the short effort to learn it, including thousands of English speakers, like myself. While I taught English as a carrier, in both Israel and the United States, mostly for money, hundreds of English teachers who speak Esperanto have a higher motivation. www.EnglishTeachersforEsperanto.blogspot.com www.LibrariansforEsperanto.blogspot.com www.esperanto-un.org Neil Blonstein, UN representative for the largest Esperanto body.

  34. neil nachum,

    Thank you for your enlightening remarks on Esperanto and teachers who speak this fascinating universal language.