This book has interesting associations. It was published in 1915 and is a lecture given by Dr. Samuel Daiches to the Jews College Union Society in London on February 7th, 1915. Field Marshall Lord Herbert Kitchener was the British Secretary of State for War and was the creator of the largest volunteer army that Britain had seen. In 1916 he was killed in action, aboard a ship that struck a German mine. Dr. Daiches wrote a patriotic book in keeping with the spirit of the Great War, but about an earlier period in Lord Kitchener’s life, when he worked for the Palestine Exploration Fund as a young man in the 1870s.
Samuel Daiches was born in 1878 in Vilna. His father, Rabbi Israel Hayyim Daiches, emigrated to England with his family and became a Rabbi in Leeds. His brother, Rabbi Salis Daiches was Rabbi of Edinburgh, Scotland. Samuel Daiches studied with his father and at the Berlin Rabbinical Seminary. After serving as rabbi at Sunderland, he became lecturer in Bible, Talmud, and Midrash at Jews’ College, London, in 1908. He also took an active part in the work of B’nai B’rith, the Anglo-Jewish Association, the British Board of Deputies, the Jewish Agency, and Jewish relief organizations.
My copy has an interesting inscription. It was given to Rabbi Maurice L. Perlzweig by Dr and Mrs Daiches on the occasion of his marriage. Maurice Perlzweig is an almost forgotten figure today. His father was a chazzan at a synagogue in Finsbury Park, but he became a Reform Rabbi and an influential British Zionist. His nephew, David Caute, has written a book about him, Perlzweig: Pioneer of British Zionism. You can click here to read Colin Shindler’s review for more information.
Here are the first few pages of Dr. Daiches book about Lord Kitchener: