RECOMMENDED FOR PURCHASE
Solon Beinfeld and Harry Bochner (editors-in-chief), Comprehensive Yiddish-English Dictionary (Indiana University Press: Bloomington and Indianapolis 2013); [also: online version with registration]
French speaking users: Bernard Vaisbrot, Yitshok Niborski & Simon Neuberg, Dictionnaire Yiddish-français (Medem: Paris 2002)
If unable to access Beinfeld-Bochner, the next resource for English speakers reading serious Yiddish literature is: Alexander Harkavy, Yiddish-English-Hebrew Dictionary (New York 1928 and numerous photomechanical editions, also here; intro to 1988 Yivo edition
Uriel Weinreich, English-Yiddish Yiddish-English Dictionary (New York 1968 and photomechanical editions; Yiddishists prefer to own a copy of the original hardcover)
Aaron Bergman, Student’s Dictionary (edited by Itche Goldberg, New York 1968)
JNW: The Amsterdam Yiddish Dictionary (translations in Dutch, easily anglicized)
The National Yiddish Book Center’s free digital search facility for Yiddish items in over 11,000 books.
Note: For rare, unknown, or irksome words and forms, this resource often provides rapid evidence of authenticity, author, time, place, context, volume and frequency of occurrence in published Yiddish, significantly supplementing extant dictionary resources.
Older classics, for your pleasure (and many subtle and valuable insights):
Alexander Harkavy’s Yiddish-English-Hebrew Dictionary [PDF] (New York 1928 and numerous photomechanical editions, also here; intro to 1988 Yivo edition).
Note: Harkavy’s is one of the rare dictionaries with a lingering soul and countless precious, inimitable details of language and their interpretation providing a view of modern Yiddish culture at its peak with truly balanced attention — and love for — its East European, North American, and international settings. It has not been rendered obsolete by the incorporation of most of the word-roots per se into later dictionaries (and his work mightily undercredited). Compiler’s views. See also the digitized text of Harkavy’s earlier bidirectional dictionary, esp. Yiddish-English.
Aaron Bergman, Student’s Dictionary [PDF] (edited by Itche Goldberg, New York 1968).
Note: Bergman-Goldberg preserves and conveys the spirit of the American Yiddish school systems of the last century, and the bona fide spirit of the secular Yiddishist scene in North America. Itche Goldberg’s unique editorial genius continues to shine right through.
The four completed volumes of Yudl Mark & Judah A. Joffe, The Great Dictionary of the Yiddish Language (print edition still findable):
Online digital searchable version of all four volumes of the Mark-Joffe Yiddish-Yiddish dictionary by Prof. Raphael Finkel
Note: Yudl Mark completed the set of index cards through to the end of the Yiddish alphabet. Hopefully these will all very soon be scanned and put on line “as is” (scans of all the cards in their alphabetical order) on a stable and professional website without “improvement and revision” and with further developments down the road (including keying in for text digitization and capacity for rapid searching). In the absence of preserving by scanning and posting, there is a danger that this treasure will be lost forever.