or schle·mihl, shle·miel
- an awkward and unlucky person for whom things never turn out right.
Origin of schlemiel
Examples from the Web for schlemiel
The song ends up a hit, and the schlemiel has done it again.
Do you call an ineffectual, hapless person a schlemiel, a shlemel, a shlemyel, or a schlemeyel?Mazel Tov, Arvind! But Are You Sure It’s Not Kneydl?
May 31, 2013
Based on the leaked reports, he said, “a schlemiel could have done this.”New Clue in Chasen Murder
A. L. Bardach
December 6, 2010
Ever since Gifkin leaves us, y'understand, we got in our cutting room one Schlemiel after another.Elkan Lubliner, American
schlemihl or shlemiel
- US slang an awkward or unlucky person whose endeavours usually fail
Word Origin and History for schlemiel
"awkward, clumsy person," 1868, from Yiddish shlemiel "bungler," from main character in A. von Chamisso's German fable "The Wonderful History of Peter Schlemihl" (1813), probably from Biblical name Shelumiel (Num. i:6), chief of the tribe of Simeon, identified with the Simeonite prince Zimri ben Salu, who was killed while committing adultery. (cf. schlemazel).