YAKNEHAZ (pseudonym of Isaiah-Nissan Hakohen Goldberg; 1858–1927), Yiddish and Hebrew writer. Born in a village near Minsk, Yaknehaz began, in 1878, writing Yiddish and Hebrew literary essays which aroused great interest. A decade later, *Sholem Aleichem reprinted the most famous of these, A Brif fun Lite keyn Amerike ("Letter from Lithuania to America"), in which, as in hundreds of later tales and sketches, Yaknehaz portrayed the life of the small Jewish town in a simple unsophisticated style. He was popular among the masses for almost half a century. His influence on young Abraham *Reisen was considerable. After the Russian Revolution, he continued to publish in the Soviet Yiddish periodicals. The government of Soviet Belorussia granted him a pension. His collections of stories appeared in Minsk in 1940–41.
Rejzen, Leksikon, 1 (1926), 1273–75; LNYL, 4 (1961), 271f; Kressel, Leksikon, 1 (1965), 413f.
Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.