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Bidding Information
Lot #    13404
Auction End Date    1/24/2006 2:22:37 PM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    Der Frankfurter Mekor Chajim
Title (Hebrew)    מקור חיים
Author    [Community - Only Ed.]
City    Frankfort am Main
Publisher    Hermon
Publication Date    1924
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   Only edition. 114 pp. plates, port., 249:186 mm., wide margins, light age staining. A very good copy bound in contemporary paper wrappers, rubbed.
   Title: Festschrift zum fuenfzigjaehrigen Bestehen des Vereins, 1874-1924; den Mitgliedern ueberreicht von der Verwaltung.

This work for the fiftieth anniversary of the existence of the organization was arranged on behalf of the executive committee of Mekor Chajim by Selig Schachnowitz. It includes many different articles, including sermons and also a history of Mekor Chajim. It also has a memorial to Nathan Homburger by R. Dr. Joseph Breuer.

Selig Schachnowitz (1874–1952), journalist and writer. Schachnowitz was born in Georgenberg, Lithuania, and after studying in Lithuanian yeshivot proceeded to Germany, where he continued his religious education, combining it with a general education. Greatly impressed by the Frankfort neo-Orthodox school, he represented an amalgam of eastern and western Orthodoxy and brought a new spirit into the latter. Appointed teacher and cantor to the community of Endingen, he began his educational activities there, both by lecturing and by writing popular articles on Judaism, including Jewish thought, history, and belles lettres. In 1908, the heads of Agudat Israel in Germany invited him to become editor of Der Israelit, in which post he served for 30 years at Frankfort on the Main, until the journal was closed down by the Nazis in 1938. He escaped to Switzerland, taking up residence in Zurich, where he continued his public and literary work until his death. Schachnowitz was one of the few leaders of the Agudah to oppose their separatist tendencies and to assume a positive attitude toward the upbuilding of Erez Israel, an attitude which was reflected in Der Israelit. Following a visit to Erez Israel in 1931, he wrote Zwischen Ruinen und Aufbau in Erez-Israel (1932), which praised agricultural settlement there, despite the author's strong reservations about the lack of religious observance in the new Israel.

Although his various publicistic works were of a religious propagandist nature, many were of a high literary standard and attracted numerous readers. Schachnowitz succeeded particularly in portraying Jewish life in Galicia and Lithuania to Western Jews, thus helping to break down the barriers of prejudice against the "Ostjuden." Many of his books are collections of his articles in Der Israelit and other periodicals. They include Merelaka (1910), Luftmenschen (1912), Jenseits (1915), and Die Messias-Braut (1925). His Judenstaat der Chasaren (1920), Abraham ben Abraham (1930), and Licht aus dem Westen (1933), a biography of Moses Sofer (the "Hatam Sofer"), were translated into Hebrew and the last also into Hungarian. In his Flucht in die Heimat (1935), Schachnowitz expressed his belief in Erez Israel as providing the solution of the Jewish problem.

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Listing Classification
20th Century:    Checked
Germany:    Checked
History:    Checked
First Editions:    Checked
Language:    German, some Hebrew
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica