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Bidding Information
Lot #    16945
Auction End Date    1/23/2007 11:32:00 AM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    Jüdische Weihestunden
Author    [Zionism - Only Ed.] Leon Kellner
City    Czernowitz
Publisher    Gutenberg
Publication Date    1914
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   First edition. 62 pp. octavo 215:120 mm., nice margins, light age staining, stamps. A very good copy loose in later boards.
   Twelve essays by the one of Theodor Herzl’s closest aides. The full title is Jüdische Weihestunden: Eine sammlungen ausgewählter aufsätze (Jewish consecrated hours: a collection of Essays). The book is dedicted to Keller’s parents, followed by a forward from Hermann Meirsohn, and then the essays. Among the topics addressed by Kellner are the longing for God (Die Sehnsucht nach Gott); New Year; Kol Nidre; the celebration of self-help (Das Fest der Selbsthilfe); Thirty days prior to Passover (Dreissig Tage vor Passah); our spring (Unser Frühling); Israel among th epeopoles (Israel unter den Völkern); and Psalms.

Leon Kellner (1859–1928), scholar of English literature and one of Herzl's early aides. After teaching in various high schools, he became a lecturer in English literature at the University of Vienna in 1890. From 1904 to 1914 he was a professor at the University of Czernowitz, where he was active in public life as a representative of the Jewish-national list to the Landtag (local parliament). When World War I broke out, Kellner moved to Vienna and after the war he served as an English expert in the office of the president of the Austrian Republic. From the publication of his first article (1884), he was active in scholarly writing, mainly in the research of English literature. He published critical editions of English texts, grammar books, an English-German, German-English dictionary, a dictionary of Shakespeare, a history of English and American literature, etc. His works were highly successful and were published in several editions because of their attractive style, even in purely academic subjects. He also published articles, stories, and feuilletons in newspapers and periodicals in English and German.

Kellner was one of Herzl's early acquaintances and advisers. He was invited by Herzl to edit the Zionist organ Die Welt, but did not accept because of his official position. He contributed to Die Welt from its first issue (at first under his own signature and later under his father's name, Raphaels), and in 1899–1900 edited the paper. Kellner assisted Herzl by opening many locked doors in England and was one of his closest associates. Herzl wrote of him in his diary: "Kellner, my best and dearest friend, whose visits are rays of light in the murk of all these worries" (March 26, 1898). Herzl even requested that Kellner edit Die Welt after his death, for "he knows more than anybody about my intentions" (May 27, 1898), and that Kellner publish his diary. Kellner fulfilled his request by publishing a selection of Herzl's writings in two volumes, aiding the publication of the diaries, and beginning to write a comprehensive biography of Herzl, of which only the first part Theodor Herzl's Lehrjahre was published (1920). Kellner is also the source of Herzl's famous saying: "If you will it, it is no legend" (found at the end of Kellner's childhood memoirs in Die Welt).

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Listing Classification
19th Century:    Checked
Russia-Poland:    Checked
Other:    Zionism
First Editions:    Checked
Language:    German
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica