A Song for peysekh: khad gadyo

Yiddish Homework

This playful cumulative song about a little goat is often sung towards the end of the Passover seder. Take a listen to the Yiddish version below and answer the questions that follow.

Khad Gadyo

For another version of this song, watch this clip from the Yiddish Book Center's Wexler Oral History Project: Singing Khad-Gadyo (Chad Gadya) in Yiddish and Ladino

Click the tabs to choose between Yiddish and transliteration. Click on the "English" tab for the English translation. Hover your mouse over the gold words for glossary help.


װערטער: י. לוקאָװסקי
מוזיק: מ. געלבאַרט

איך האָב פֿאַר אײַך אַ מעשׂהלע,
אַ מעשׂהלע גאָר שײן:
דער טאַטע האָט אַ ציגעלע
געקױפֿט פֿאַר צװײ גילדײן.

אַ ציגעלע אַ װײַסינקע,
אַ שײנינקע װי גאָלד,
און צװײ גילדײן מזומנע
האָט ער פֿאַר איר באַצאָלט.
חד־גדיא, חד־גדיא.

איז דאָך אין הױף אַ קאַץ געװען,
אַ מזיק װי באַװוּסט.
האָט קעצעלען זיך פֿאַרצוקן גאָר
דאָס ציגעלע פֿאַרגלוסט.

דערזען האָט עס אַ הינטעלע.
פֿאַרדריסט עס אים גאַנץ שטאַרק,
ער װאַרפֿט זיך אױף דער בײזער קאַץ
און בײַסט איר אײַן אין קאַרק.
חד־גדיא, חד־גדיא.

קומט שטעקעלע אין כּעס אַרײַן
און טראַכט גאָר ניט קײן סך,
און שפּאַלט דאָס קעפּל הינטעלען:
דו, הונט! ס'איז ניט דײַן זאַך.

צעפֿלאַקערט האָט זיך פֿײַערל,
פֿאַר כּעס צונטער רױט:
דו, שטעקעלע! דו, פֿלעקעלע!
איך מאַך דיר באַלד אַ טױט.
חד־גדיא, חד־גדיא.

קומט צו פֿליסן װאַסערל,
און לעשט דאָס פֿײַער אױס,
קומט צו גײן דאָס עקסעלע
און טרינקט דאָס װאַסער אױס.

נאָר האָבן מיר אַ שוחטל,
מיט אַ חלפֿל װאָס גלאַנצט,
מאַכט ער צום אָקס כיק כיק כיק,
און ס'איז אױס באַלד אונדזער טאַנץ!
חד־גדיא, חד־גדיא!


verter: y. lukovski
muzik: m. gelbart

ikh hob far aykh a maysele,
a maysele gor sheyn:
der tate hot a tsigele
gekoyft far tsvey gildeyn.

a tsigele a vaysinke,
a sheyninke vi gold,
un tsvey gildeyn mezumene
hot er far ir batsolt.
khad-gadyo, khad-gadyo.

iz dokh in hoyf a kats geven,
a mazek vi bavust.
hot ketselen zikh fartsukn gor
dos tsigele farglust.

derzen hot es a hintele.
fardrist es im gants shtark,
er varft zikh oyf der beyzer kats
un bayst ir ayn in kark.
khad-gadyo, khad-gadyo.

kumt shtekele in kas arayn
un trakht gor nit keyn sakh,
un shpalt dos kepl hintelen:
du, hunt! s'iz nit dayn zakh.

tseflakert hot zikh fayerl,
far kas tsunter royt:
du, shtekele! du, flekele!
ikh makh dir bald a toyt.
khad-gadyo, khad-gadyo.

kumt tsu flisn vaserl,
un lesht dos fayer oys,
kumt tsu geyn dos eksele
un trinkt dos vaser oys.

nor hobn mir a shoykhetl,
mit a khalefl vos glantst,
makht er tsum oks khik khik khik,
un s'iz oys bald undzer tants!
khad-gadyo, khad-gadyo!

Khad Gadyo

Lyrics: Y. Lukovski
Music: M. Gelbart
Translation: Asya Vaisman Schulman

I have for you a little tale,
A story that's quite old:
My father bought a little goat,
For tuppence it was sold.

A little goat with hair so white,
As pretty as can be,
And tuppence he did pay for it,
He paid in cash this fee.
Khad gadyo, khad gadyo.

There was a kitty in the yard,
A scamp, if you'd inquire.
And to devour the little goat
Became his one desire.

A little dog saw all of this.
He got bent out of shape,
He threw himself upon the cat
And bit him on the nape.
Khad gadyo, khad gadyo.

A little stick came, raging mad,
And he did not think twice:
He split the little doggy's head:
"You hound! That wasn't nice!"

A little flame flickered to life,
In anger, blazing red:
"You little stick! You little club!
I'll make sure that you're dead!"
Khad gadyo, khad gadyo.

The water came a-flowing down,
And put the fire out,
A little ox came by to drink
The water up, no doubt.

But then the slaughterer came by
With a gleaming butcher's knife,
And as this song came to an end,
He took the ox's life!
Khad gadyo, khad gadyo!

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Created by Dr. Asya Vaisman Schulman, Director of the Yiddish Book Center's Yiddish Language Institute. Revised by Sonia Bloom. — artwork by Alexander Vaisman, www.vaisman.org