Baggers currently occupying the streets are different than last year. Most of the beggars from the provinces have died out. The new beggars are people from higher spheres, it is easy to recognize their background basing it on their appearance and posture. They speak good, and sometimes perfect Polish: “Dear sir and madam, today I haven’t eaten anything yet”. Some of them are former students of the Judaist Institute and they ask for help in Hebrew. Some are well dressed and if they weren’t shyly reaching hands or quietly asking for alms, never would it cross your minds that they are beggars”. In Karmelicka Street, next to the wall of an evangelical church, a beggar stands, neatly dressed, with a pretty child, kept clean, well-washed, who does not reach a hand, but asks for help with their eyes.
Emanuel Ringelblum, 3rd May 1942, Warsaw
E. Ringelblum, “The Warsaw Ghetto Chronicle”, Warsaw, 1988; a journal from JHI’s collection, Ringelblum Archives; Translated from Yiddish by A. Rutkowski.