Page 104 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 7 (1948-1949)

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actually to begin its work. Mr. and Mrs. Morris Newburger
donated $500.00 in memory of their son Morton M. Judge Simon
Rosendale, of Albany, presided at the first meeting, and continued
active in the affairs of the Society as an Honorary Vice-President
until his death in the spring of 1937.
The original seal of The Jewish Publication Society of America,
stamped on its works, was designed by Moses Ezekiel, the cele-
brated American Jewish sculptor, at Rome, Italy. I t represented
the fulfillment of the glorious prophecy of Isaiah — the lion and
the lamb lying down together and a little boy leading them. The
two Hebrew letters (
, twice), representing the Name of The
Lord, are emblazoned above, and within the seal are these words:
“ Israel's mission is peace.” The second seal, adopted in 1906, and
still in use, represents the Tree of Knowledge or of Torah, in
accordance with the biblical sentiment that learning is “ a tree of
life to those who hold on to i t ......... ”
The first book to be published appeared two years after the
founding of the Society —
Outlines of Jewish History
by Lady
Magnus. This book, published 58 years ago, and revised and
brought up to date in 1929 by Dr. Solomon Grayzel, is reprinted
periodically and is still being used as a textbook by some religious
schools. The second venture of the Society was the publication
of Prof. Heinrich Graetz’s abridged
History of the Jews
, the first
volume of which was published in 1891. This splendid history
still remains one of the Society’s outstanding publications. A
supplementary volume, by the late Professor Ismar Elbogen, called
A Century of Jewish Life
, was published in 1940. A new trans-
lation of the 12-volume, unabridged, Graetz’s
History of the Jews
is under way; it will contain the original text and Graetz’s notes,
as well as additional bibliographies to be added by the foremost
Jewish historians in America.
Steps leading to the preparation of a new translation of the
Bible into English were taken by the Society in 1892. I t was
intended to secure, through the cooperation of scholars in the
United States and Great Britain, a new translation of each book,
which an editorial committee, in constant correspondence with
the translators, would then coordinate. This method was followed
until 1901, under the general direction of Dr. Marcus Jastrow,
Editor-in-Chief, with Doctor Kaufmann Kohler and Doctor