||A volume in German on a blood accusation, which occurred in Tiszaeszlar, town in N.E. Hungary, not far from the provincial capital, Nyiregyhaza. The town became notorious in Jewish history in connection with a blood libel there which aroused public opinion throughout Europe at the time and became the subject of stormy agitation in Hungary over many years. Its effects were disastrously clear during the White Terror period (1919–21), and even later during the anti-Semitic activity which culminated in Hungary with the expulsions of World War II. In 1882, when the blood libel occurred, there were about 25 Jewish families living in Tiszaeszlar, which had a total population of approximately 2,700. In 1944, the year of the expulsions, there were 61 Jews in the village.
On April 1, 1882, one of the village inhabitants, Eszter Solymosi, a Christian girl aged 14, disappeared. It was later discovered that she had committed suicide by throwing herself into the River Tisza. A short time after her disappearance, rumors were spread that some of the local Jews had murdered her in the community synagogue for religious requirements in anticipation of the Passover festival. The accusers included the leading local official, the provincial deputy in the parliament in Budapest, and the local Catholic priest, who also published an article which, by implication, accused the Jews of ritual murder. The authorities opened an investigation. The examining magistrate and other representatives of the state, who in principle believed the accusation, carried out their investigation with brutal methods. They succeeded by a ruse in convincing a local 14-year-old Jewish youth, Móric Scharf, to give false evidence: namely that with his own eyes he had witnessed how his father, with local Jews and others who had come from the vicinity, had murdered the girl in the synagogue and gathered her blood in a bowl. The investigation was much publicized, as was the trial which followed. There were also stormy debates on the subject in the Budapest parliament. Anti-Semitic deputies, Gyozo (Viktor) Istoczy, fomented a violent agitation. The prime minister Kalman Tisza, did not believe in the libel, but because of political considerations did not dare to impede the judicial proceedings. The minister of justice, Tivadar Pauler, did indeed believe that a few uncivilized Jews employed Christian blood for their religious worship. The state prosecutor-general, Sándor Kozma, a man of liberal opinions, was opposed to the charge. A representative of the prosecution at the trial itself, Ede Szeyffert, also supported this opinion.
The trial was held in Nyiregyhaza during the summer months of 1883. In his summing-up speech the prosecutor proposed that the accused should be acquitted, and the verdict subsequently exonerated the 15 Jews accused. The counsel for the defense was brilliantly led by a non-Jewish advocate, Karoly Eotvos, who was also a noted author, politician, and member of the Hungarian parliament. It was as a result of his interventions that the tribunal invalidated the false evidence which had been submitted. After appeals, the verdict was finally upheld by the supreme court of Budapest on May 10, 1884. Instead of subsiding, the wave of anti-Semitism gathered momentum throughout Hungary after the verdict of the district tribunal. In 1883, there were attacks on Jews in Budapest itself and other localities. These outbreaks reached such proportions that in certain districts the authorities were compelled to proclaim a state of emergency in order to protect the Jews and their property. In the wake of the anti-Semitic movement concentrated around the trial, and led by Ist\czy,, a specifically anti-Semitic party was founded which in the parliamentary elections of 1884 won 17 seats. In the same elections, E[tv[s, the defense advocate, was unsuccessful as candidate for the Liberals. A variety of books and articles on the trial were written by both Jewish and anti-Semitic authors. In 1904, E[tv[s,published a history of the trial, a work of literary merit, which was published in a second handsome edition in 1968. The youth who had accused his parents and the members of his community underwent a spiritual and mental crisis. He remained for a while with his parents in Budapest and then left for Amsterdam, where he brought up a family in traditional Judaism and found employment in the diamond industry. His memoirs were published . Numerous articles on the trial appeared in the general and Jewish press in Hungary and the rest of Europe. Its events form the plot of Arnold Zweig's novel Ritualmord in Ungarn (1914). A young Hungarian historian, SFndor Hegedcs, published a monograph on the trial in Budapest in 1966. In the conclusion, he points out that he visited the village in search of material and to his regret still found "negative memories" of the trial among the elderly inhabitants.
The author, Paul Nathan, (1857–1927) was a German politician, Jewish leader, and philanthropist. A protegé of Ludwig Bamberger and Theodor Barth, he was associated with the Berlin liberal publication Die Nation, serving as its editor until 1907. Because of his influence in political circles and as founder in 1901 of the Hilfsverein der deutschen Juden, Nathan was often regarded as the spokesman of German Jewry apart from the Zionists. He was active in almost all international Jewish conferences on emigration and relief for Jewish victims of pogroms and wars, helping to shape international political and relief campaigns to aid them. Nathan was convinced that the Jewish problem in Russia was part of the general Russian problem, to be solved only by change of regime - if necessary by revolution. He advocated economic pressure on Russia by the West, primarily through refusals to grant loans. Under Nathan's influence the Hilfsverein der deutschen Juden aided liberal and even revolutionary movements in Russia, and he was also instrumental in influencing Lucien Wolf in England and Jacob H. Schiff in the United States to accept its policies toward Russia. The Hilfsverein published the Russische Korrespondenz, which informed the press, political leaders, and other personalities of the true situation in Russia, and similar bulletins in England and Paris.
During the Beilis trial of 1913 Nathan, with the help of Lucien Wolf in London, organized the defense of Beilis outside Russia. In Germany Nathan obtained a large number of signatures of non-Jewish personalities in favor of Beilis and expert opinions by scientists. At the same time Nathan published the book Der Fall Justschinski, an account of the German pro-Beilis campaign. He was among the founders of the Comite zur Abwehr Anti-semitischer Angriffe in Berlin. In 1896 he published Die Kriminalitaet der Juden and Die Juden als Soldaten and Uber das juedische rituelle Schaechtverfahren.
Nathan was basically a sincere assimilationist who saw only in complete assimilation with the non-Jewish population, the possiblity of full emancipation in every country. Thus he strongly opposed the Zionist movement. During World War I, while German Zionists demanded autonomous rights for Jews in countries occupied by the German armed forces, Nathan gave constant help to the assimilationists of Poland. When the war broke out he helped to gain the sympathy of Jews in neutral countries for the cause of the Central Powers, his main argument being that a war against Russia, the country of barbaric pogroms, should be supported by Jews. At the beginning of the Weimar Republic Nathan officially joined the Socialist Party (S.P.D.). The German government asked him to accept the post of its ambassador to Vienna, but Nathan declined the offer because of his close association with the major Jewish organizations at a time when anti-Semitism was strong in Austria. Through his many friends abroad he tried to gain sympathy for Germany, constantly warning that the harsh conditions of the Versailles Treaty would help bring back a totalitarian and reactionary regime in Germany from which both that nation and others would suffer. Nathan's enthusiasm for Jewish colonization in Soviet Russia led to his publishing a pamphlet in 1926 in which he favored the concentration of Soviet Jews in the far-eastern part of that country.
Contents: Vorwort.--Einleitung.--Das ereigniss von Tisza-Eszlár und die antisemiten.--Die ausgestaltung der legende.--Der kampf zur vernichtung der angeklagten.--Der prozess wegen mordes.--Der prozess über den leichenschmuggel.--Beilagen: Obductionsprotokolle und medicinische gutachten. Situations-plan von Tisza-Eszlár.