Dobridzien (LKT)

This entry is part of the Lexicon of Klezmer Terminology (LKT). The LKT compiles a wide array of source materials that shed light on the historical and contemporary state of knowledge about klezmer music. Each entry includes a number of citations from primary and secondary sources that include or refer to the term in question. It also indicates whether musical notation or sound recordings are included in the source. To view the full reference, click on the bibliographic hyperlink at the end of each citation.


Dobridzien. On the morning after the baleygns [consumation of marriage] people used to make a reception and eat cheese. Klezmorim used to play. This meant that everything was kosher [proper]. This was what people were accustomed to do in my neighborhood, in Horodets, in Antopolye and in the shtetls nearby.

Dobridzien comes from the two Polish words dobry and dzien -- Good day, that is, all is well and good. The custom of eating cheese stems from the Middle Ages, when people used to give the wedding couple honey with cheese while they made the blessings under the khupe. This was an allusion to ‘honey and milk under your tongue’ (Song of Songs, 4:11)...

Harkavi, in the already cited Verterbukh, defines the dobridzien in English and Hebrew, that this was music that was played to honor the bride in the morning of the wedding-day. From such a definition it must be concluded that this was the custom in Navaredek. But in the neighborhood from where I come the dobridzien used to take place on the morning after the ceremony.” [Horodec, Poland, pre-World War II]. Ben-Ezra 1963, pp. 47-48

Beregovski 1937 [= Beregovski/Slobin 1982, p. 535].

Dobriden, dobranoč, mazltov -- these are the names of the pieces performed by the wedding band to greet the guests. These were performed for individual guests at the table. The dobranoč was performed to greet the guests arriving for the banquet at the home of the bride’s parents and should not be confused with the Dobranoč (a gute naxt); the latter was performed at the departure of the guests after the meal, while they parted with the hosts. They played more solemn, large works for more honored guests, and smaller pieces for the rest. After the performance of such a piece they played a frejlaxs.” Beregovski/Slobin 1982, p. 500, n. 71

Dobridzen.” Beregovski/Goldin 1987, #1-3, 5, 12. (Musical notation included). 

“A mazltov (congratulatory tune), along with a dobriden (welcome tune) and dobranitsh (farewell tune), are pieces performed by the wedding band to greet the guests.” Bjorling 1996a, p. 42. (Recording references included). 

“At a wedding they used to play in honor of each in-law a ‘vivat’ and in the morning later a ‘frimorgns’ or a ‘dzshan dobri’, in Yiddish euphemistic language therefore they referred to each one by how much it cost: ‘opshpiln a bezon, a viston, a frimorgen’, ‘obgeshpilt a dobranots’, 'obgeshpilt a vivat.'” Elzet 1918, pp. 34-35

“Non-metrical genres included wedding ritual tunes such as dobraden’, dobranoch, some of the mazltov tunes, kaleh bazetsen (in Belorussia), and opfihren di makhetonim.” Feldman 1994, p. 7

“[At the] wedding of a daughter of rich people... the klezmorim’s entrance to the shtetl was a grand affair. The first melody ‘dobridz’in’ they played [as they walked] at the heads of the streams of people.” [Ritova (Rietavas), Lithuania, pre-World War II]. Grod 1948, pp. 33-34. (Musical notation included). 

Dobri-Dzyen. Good morning. Music played in honor of the bride on the morning of the wedding day.” Harkavi 1928, p. 162

“[When he would play in the street,] the entire shtetl would leave everything and come to listen to his ‘dobridzshens’... [but in America] our old klezmer would lock himself in a room and play an entire old wedding, from the ‘dobridzhen,’ until the gezegnungs-marsh... [America is] a strange land with strange weddings. Everything is hit up and rattled off, without a ‘dobridzshen,’ ...”[Byten, Grodno province, Russia, c. 1905-1911]. Rabinovitch 1940, p. 203

“From Shabbat until Wednesday... each evening there was music... and every morning we heard the ‘guten-Morgen-Standchen,’ ‘dobri dsen,’ and we danced happy little dances.” Wengeroff 1913, I, pp. 182-83

“The day of the wedding the klezmer had to arrive early in the morning to play a gut-morgn for the parents of the bride and groom...” [Vilna, Lithuania, 1880-1900]. Zizmor 1922a, p. 874

“After songs had become stylish, especially in Zunser’s times, the art of the badkhn became very common. Anyone who had a semi-decent voice or a healthy heart learned a few songs, bought a bazetsns with a ‘gut morgn’ from a real badkhn and became a badkhn in his own right.” [Vilna, Lithuania, 1870s-80s]. Zizmor 1922b, p. 876.

“In the morning they made a ‘rumpl’... here the klezmer came with the badkhn playing for everyone a ‘dobridzen’... which they played [again] for each particular person.” [Vilna, 1880s-1900s]. Zizmor 1922b, pp. 878

See A gut morgn and Frimorgns.