Shvil HaTzvi, by Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Ferber, London 1936

Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Ferber was born in Kovno in 1879. He was a renowned Torah and Talmudic scholar who emigrated to Manchester, England in 1911 and then in 1913 became the Rabbi and leader of the West End Talmud Torah Synagogue (Kehilas Yeshurun) in Soho, London. Much has been written about him, including his memoirs … Continue reading Shvil HaTzvi, by Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch Ferber, London 1936

The Biala Rebbe’s copy of Moreh Nebuchim – the Guide for the Perplexed, by the Rambam (Maimonides), Warsaw 1872

This is a copy of Moreh Nebuchim, which means Guide for the Perplexed, that was printed in Warsaw by Isaac Goldman in 1872.  Moreh Nebuchim is a work of philosophy, written by Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, known as Maimonides or the Rambam.  It is divided into three parts and this edition has four commentaries.  My … Continue reading The Biala Rebbe’s copy of Moreh Nebuchim – the Guide for the Perplexed, by the Rambam (Maimonides), Warsaw 1872

Jewish Chronicle 1894 – Bayswater Synagogue Installs Electric Light

This is a bound volume of the Jewish Chronicle for the year 1894.  The format is a little different to the Jewish Chronicle of today.  The paper is better than modern newsprint and has stood up well to time. The first thing that is noticeable is that there are no photographs.  Apart from the occasional … Continue reading Jewish Chronicle 1894 – Bayswater Synagogue Installs Electric Light

The Jewish Year Book 5663 (1902-1903), Isidore Harris. The London Synagogues.

This is another copy of the Jewish Year book - this time for 1902-3.  It is the seventh issue, and much expanded from the 1896 first issue that I wrote about here.  It is a printed snapshot of the Anglo-Jewish community in 1902, and like the other Jewish Year Books has too much information to … Continue reading The Jewish Year Book 5663 (1902-1903), Isidore Harris. The London Synagogues.

History of the Great Synagogue, London, 1640-1940, Cecil Roth. London 1950.

This is one of those classic books that any Anglo-Jewish library has to have. The Great Synagogue was the cathedral synagogue - the mother synagogue of British Ashkenazi Jewry.  It was known as "Duke's Place" after the street where it was situated.  It had 250 years of history.  It was the place where my great-grandparents, … Continue reading History of the Great Synagogue, London, 1640-1940, Cecil Roth. London 1950.

Cigarette Card – Rev. Louis Levy Shaposnick of the Great Garden Street Synagogue, Churchmans Cigarettes, 1938

This is, I think, the smallest item in my library.  In 1938 W. A. and A. C. Churchman issued a set of cigarette cards, entitled 'In Town Tonight' with a series of London personalities.  Rev. Louis Shaposnick (1909 - 1982) was probably the only rabbi to ever be depicted on a cigarette card.  Here he … Continue reading Cigarette Card – Rev. Louis Levy Shaposnick of the Great Garden Street Synagogue, Churchmans Cigarettes, 1938

Diukno shel Yaakov by Rabbi Lewis (Yehuda Leib) Levene, circa 1929, and the Jubilee Street Great Zionist Synagogue

Rabbi Lewis Levene was Rabbi of the Jubilee Street Great Zionist Synagogue in the East End of London.  He published this book of sermons and eulogies in approximately 1929.  My copy has his address of 52 Heneage Street, Brick Lane crossed out and handwritten  as 83 the Avenue, London N.W.6. The Jubilee Street Synagogue opened … Continue reading Diukno shel Yaakov by Rabbi Lewis (Yehuda Leib) Levene, circa 1929, and the Jubilee Street Great Zionist Synagogue

History of the Hampstead Synagogue and Order of Service on the Fiftieth Anniversary of its opening, 24th Ellul, 5702, 6th September, 1942

I have previously written about the Hampstead Synagogue ten years after its opening.  Here we are now, forty years later, in 1942.  This wartime booklet has the history of the Hampstead Synagogue followed by a Roll of Honour - Members of the Hampstead Synagogue, and their sons and daughters, who served in the British armed … Continue reading History of the Hampstead Synagogue and Order of Service on the Fiftieth Anniversary of its opening, 24th Ellul, 5702, 6th September, 1942

The Jewish Year Book 5657, Joseph Jacobs, 1896, London

I have a whole shelf of Jewish Year Books - they are still being issued each year today - but this one is the grand-daddy of them all, the Jewish Year Book for the first year, published in 1896.  This was a revolutionary book, full of facts and contact information for the "Queen's Jewry", the … Continue reading The Jewish Year Book 5657, Joseph Jacobs, 1896, London

Zeman Zemanim Zemanehem attributed to Rabbi Jonah Rappa, edited by Rev. George Belasco of Ramsgate, London 1908

This book gives us an opportunity to introduce another largely forgotten Anglo-Jewish clergyman, George (Gershon) Simmons Belasco. The book itself, which George Belasco edited from a rare manuscript, is an Anti-Christian satire.  The "Haggadah" of R. Jonah Rapa (c. 1380), is a vehement denunciation of the licentiousness indulged in by Gentiles during the carnival. It … Continue reading Zeman Zemanim Zemanehem attributed to Rabbi Jonah Rappa, edited by Rev. George Belasco of Ramsgate, London 1908