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Bidding Information
Lot #    19953
Auction End Date    2/19/2008 10:55:00 AM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    What is Judaism?
Title (Hebrew)   
Author    [Only Ed.] R. Eliezer Bezalel Silberman
City    New York?
Publication Date    1901
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   Only edition. 27, 5 pp. octavo 225:145 mm., usual age staining, some chipping. A good copy bound in the original wrappers, chipped.
   Monograph, primarily in Yiddish with English introduction, on the importance of Jewish education by R. Eliezer Bezalel Silberman (Zilbermann). The date and full name of the author are known from the approbations, on the back cover, from R. Dov Baer Abromovitz, R. Jacob David of Slitzk, and R. Dov Aryeh ben Abraham ha-Kohen Leventhal. The English portion of the title page lists three sub titles, The duty and responsibility of parents toward their children; The importance of true Jewish training for the coming generation of Jews; and The beautiful stories of Ester and Judith, those Jewish heroines of Ancient Days. There is full page photograph of the author wearing a tallit at the beginning of What is Judaism?

How R. Siberman approaches these subjects can be seen from the beginning of the English portion, where he writes, concerning the true purpose of education. He writes In this age of culture and education there will hardly be found anyone who would doubt the utility of education. There are many, regarding education only as a means towards an end, and as an instrument with which to coin dollars and cents, something which will be of assistance in the continual struggle for existence, but they lose sight of the ideal aspect of education, that it is a blessing and leads to happiness. The object of education is not to produce capable doctors and lawyers, rabbis and teachers, merchants and artisans, but Men. Further on he writes When Adam and Eve ate from the Tree of Knowledge the Torah remarks and their eyes were opened. Often when discussing the question of education with ignorant persons, whey will say: we know graduates, highly-educated men, who are fools and absolutely unable to gain a livelihood, and on the other hand, men without any education, who never saw a college, have risen in life and are worth a nice few thousand dollars. . . . Ask any of the men who made their way in the world, and they will at once admit that they themselves regret their lack of education and would have accomplished a great deal more did they posses an education. Education sharpens the intellect. . . .

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Listing Classification
20th Century:    Checked
America-South America:    Checked
Polemics:    Checked
First Editions:    Checked
Language:    Yiddish, English
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica