וואנקים

English translation: Vaneks/\"Ivans\"

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Hebrew term or phrase:וואנקים
English translation:Vaneks/\"Ivans\"
Entered by: Mary Jane Shubow

21:51 Jul 11, 2012
Hebrew to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - History / memoirs of a partisan
Hebrew term or phrase: וואנקים
wider context --

הרחובות היו ריקים. הלכתי במהירות. השעה היתה כמעט ארבע. הרגשתי קור. חשתי דקירה במקום בו היה לי הפצע. עכשיו כבר אנוח בבית־ החולים.

הלכתי בצעדים מהירים, כמעט רצתי, חציתי את הרחובות, לא ידעתי אם אני הולך לכיוון בית החולים. הדרך ארכה זמן רב מדי. פגשתי שני וואנקים
:
״שמעו, איפה בית־החולים של הפארטיזאנים?״

Could this be two Ivans? two Vaneks? some kind of Russian slang?

Any ideas?

Thanks!
Mary Jane Shubow
United States
Local time: 10:44
Vaneks/"Johns" - term denoting a random stranger
Explanation:
"Vanek \v(a)-nek\ as a boy's name is a variant of John (Hebrew), and the meaning of Vanek is "God is gracious".

Given that "Vanek" is a variant of "John" - which is one of the most ubiquitous names for men in English and often used as a generic name for male strangers or randoms (à la John Doe)....my guess would be that this is just the speakers way of saying he met two randoms on the street and asked them the way to the partisan hospital.

He didn't exactly stop to get their names so just designated them "Vaneks".

*It may be Russian slang but I couldn't find any such information which would back this up, even after searching using various Cyrillic spellings:
ванек ваник ванук ванэк ванык.
Selected response from:

Ty Kendall
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:44
Grading comment
Thanks a lot!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
3 +2Vaneks/"Johns" - term denoting a random stranger
Ty Kendall
Summary of reference entries provided
Van'ka
Irina Levchenko

  

Answers


54 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +2
Vaneks/"Johns" - term denoting a random stranger


Explanation:
"Vanek \v(a)-nek\ as a boy's name is a variant of John (Hebrew), and the meaning of Vanek is "God is gracious".

Given that "Vanek" is a variant of "John" - which is one of the most ubiquitous names for men in English and often used as a generic name for male strangers or randoms (à la John Doe)....my guess would be that this is just the speakers way of saying he met two randoms on the street and asked them the way to the partisan hospital.

He didn't exactly stop to get their names so just designated them "Vaneks".

*It may be Russian slang but I couldn't find any such information which would back this up, even after searching using various Cyrillic spellings:
ванек ваник ванук ванэк ванык.


    Reference: http://www.thinkbabynames.com/meaning/1/Vanek
Ty Kendall
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:44
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 44
Grading comment
Thanks a lot!
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thanks a lot!

Asker: Thanks a lot!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Sabine Akabayov, PhD: makes sense
1 hr
  -> Thanks Sibsab! :-)

agree  Irina Levchenko
7 hrs
  -> Большое спасибо Irina! :-)
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Reference comments


8 hrs
Reference: Van'ka

Reference information:
I absolutely agree with Ty. Van'ka (Ванька) or Ivan is a variant of John the meaning is that the author met two RUSSIAN guys (or local guys). Here the meaning of Van'ka is the same as "muzhik" - a Russian man of not noble origin or we can say one from the working class. But "muzhik" reffers to adults, "van'ka" may reffer to teenagers.

Irina Levchenko
Native speaker of: Native in UkrainianUkrainian, Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 8
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