Page 119 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 35

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to Christianity. T he au tho r’s purpose also is to show Christians
tha t some Jews are worthy of being converted.
The 22 novels published before 1850 and the Jewish char­
acters they portray are chronologically as follows:
T h e A l g e r n i n e C a p t i v e ,
or
T h e A d v e n t u r e s o f D o c t o r U p d i k e
U n d e r h i l l ,
by David Carlisle. Walpole, New Hampshire,
1797.
In one of his adventures the narrator, an American doctor, in
his attempt to escape to America is promised the help of a Jew,
Adonah Ben Benjamin. Instead of giving help the Jew and his
son rob the American of his money.
M i r i a m ,
or
T h e P o w e r o f T r u t h ,
by Charlotte Anley, Philadel­
phia, 1834. (Published also in England, 1834.)
A wealthy Jew, Im lah Durvan, and his daughter, Miriam,
leave Germany for England where Imlah buys a large estate
tha t for centuries had belonged to nobility. Imlah, whose wife
had died when Miriam was born, believes England will offer
him and his daughter greater freedom and a more tolerant
climate.
A man of dignity and intellect who is passionately devoted
to his religion, Im lah leads the life of a recluse. But Miriam
becomes acquainted with the members of a devout Christian
family who, together with their minister, teach her the tenets
of Christianity.
Miriam becomes ill and on her deathbed asks her father for
a Christian burial. He assents to her wish bu t does not attend
the funeral. Broken-hearted, he carries out another of Miriam’s
wishes—tha t he read and study the New Testament. This study
convinces him to embrace Christianity.
By the authors’ own admission, the purpose of this novel is
to influence Jews to turn to Christianity.
T h e B r a v o ,
by James Fenimore Cooper. Philadelphia, 1835.
This is a later edition of the novel, which was first published
in 1831. T he scene of the story is Venice where Signor Giacomo
comes to Hosea, the Jewish money-lender and jeweler, to borrow
money. Giacomo is in love with Violetta, daughter of the wealthy
Jew, Levi of Liverne. He and his father promise Hosea a large
sum of money if he succeeds in persuading Violetta to marry
KLEIN / JEWISH CHARACTERS IN EARLY AMERICAN FICTION
109