Page 113 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 34

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WIENER / JEWISH LITERARY ANNIVERSARIES
103
Graetz’s
History of the Jews.
He is best known, however, for a
Hebrew adaptation of Hermann Reckendorf’s
Secrets of the Jews,
originally published in German, which is a fictionalized account
of Jewish history down to the 19th century.
M
eir
Sim on
G
eshuri
. 80th birthday. Born in Mislowitz, Germany,
April 19, 1897. In Palestine since 1920, he was director of the
department of trade and industry of the Jewish Agency, but later
head of the Institute for Religious Music in Israel. His writings
deal to a large extent with this subject, particularly Hasidic music.
W i l h e lm H e rzb e rg .
150th anniversary of birth. Born in Stettin, Ger­
many, January 27, 1827, died in Brussels in 1897. From an as­
similated family, he acquired knowledge about Jews and Judaism
mainly from non-Jewish sources, yet was able to write a fictional
work in defense of Judaism,
Jewish Family Papers
(in English
translation, 1875), which aroused great interest and was well
received by Jewish scholars, like Graetz. He later became director
of the Mikve Israel Agricultural School in Palestine and also
founded the first B’nai B’rith Lodge in Jerusalem, whose im­
portant project, a library, was to become the nucleus of the
collection of the present Jewish National and University Library,
the greatest of its kind in the world.
L e o H e r z b e rg -F r a e n k e l .
150th anniversary of birth. Born in Brody,
Galicia, September 19, 1827, died there in 1897. For forty years
secretary of the chamber of commerce in his native city, he also
was the audior of novels and studies of Jewish interest in German.
A work on the Polish Jews was included in an anthology edited
by the Austrian Prince Rudolph.
M i c h a e l H igg e r.
25th anniversary of death. Born near Kovno, Lithu­
ania, in 1898, died in New York, November 22, 1952. In the
United States since 1915, he was ordained at the Jewish Theological
Seminary of America. Most of his literary work was devoted to
editing the Minor Tractates of the Talmud, also the
Otsar ha-
Baraitot.
In English he wrote
Intentions in Jewish Law
(1927)
and
Jewish Utopia
(1932), a reconstruction of the ideal society
according to the Rabbis of ancient times.
D a v id H o f s t e in .
25th anniversary of death. Born in the Ukraine in
1889, killed in Siberia, August 12, 1952. A Soviet Yiddish poet, who
for a time had lived in Palestine because already in the early years
of Communism, he chafed under its rejection of Jewish nationalism
and Hebrew literature, he eventually returned, when the literary
climate appeared to be more tolerant. Although he conformed
to the dictates of the arbiters of Soviet literature, he, too, perished
in the purge of Jewish culture.