Isaak Welsch aus Steppach

December 31, 2009

gravemarker of Isaac “Eisik” Welsh from Steppach at Munich Jewish Cemetery

Das Grab von Isaak Welsch aus der heiligen Gemeinde Steppach bei Augsburg am alten jüdsichen Friedhof in München.


Jüdische Straßennamen in Augsburg

December 29, 2009

Es gibt bekanntlich nicht viele Namen in Augsburgs Straßen, die an die lange Geschichte der Juden in Augsburg erinnern. Da gibt es den “Judenberg” in der City und irgendwo gut versteckt einen Julius-Spokojny-Weg, den kaum einer je betreten hat. Kenner wissen, dass die heutige Karlstraße mal “Judengasse” hieß oder die Mauer entlang der Blauen Kappe früher “Judenwall”. Auch den Namen “Judenbrunnen” gab es mal, auch wenn sich das kaum einer erklären kann. Nicht leichter tut man sich aber, wenn man darüber nachdenkt, warum es in Augsburg nun eigentlich an recht prominenter Stelle einen Kennedy-Platz gibt. Was genau hat der nun für Augsburg getan? Und warum benennt man ihn nicht nach Carl-von-Obermayer, der sich, neben zahlreichen anderen Verdiensten als US-Konsul in Augsburg, als Kommandant der Augsburger Landwehr, Stifter von Armenküchen, usw. eben auch als Freund der schönen Künste wenigstens doch für den Bau eines neuen Stadttheaters an heutiger Stelle eingesetzt hat?

Wie dem auch sei, wir haben für die künftige Planung der Dauerbaustelle Augsburger Innenstadt ein paar Anregungen, wie Augsburg seiner reichhaltigen jüdischen Vergangenheit künftig mit angemessenem Stolz begegnen könnte. 

(Tipsiles-Weg, Fritz-Landauer-Str., Isidor-Obermayer-Weg, Maharam-Platz, Am Judenkirchhof, Sanwil-Ulmo-Weg, Carl-von-Obermayer-Platz, Rabbi-Weil-Str., Moses Landauer-Str., Henle-Ephraim-Ullmann-Str., Wolf Simon Wertheimer Str., …)

As it is generally known there are not many street names in Augsburg to recall the long history of Jews. There is a “Judenberg” (Jews hill) downtown and somewhere well hidden a side street, dedicated to the late Senator Julius Spokojny who was long-time head of the Jewish postwar community. Some appreciators know that once Karlstr. bore the name “Judengasse” (Jews street) and the wall alongside “Blaue Kappe” once was called “Judenwall” (Jews rampart). Also there was a “Judenbrunnen” (Jews Well), which defies explanation to most of the few who heard of it at all. However it is not much easier to explain why contrary to this there is a Kennedy-Place in the heart of the city of Augsburg. What exactly he had achieved for Augsburg? As far as I understood he never was in Augsburg not even once. Why – for instance – the place is not named for Carl-von-Obermayer who had abundant merits as US-Consul in Augsburg, as Commander of Augsburg’s Territorial Army, as donator of feeding for the poor, etc. and not least as patron of fine arts he was campaigning for the establishment of a new City Theater at the very place it is known today ..?


Ulmo – Wertheimer

December 28, 2009

Elchanan ben Ephraim Ulmo (1750-1807) seinen Zeitgenossen auch als Henle Ephraim Ullmann bekannt war im Jahre 1803 einer der drei Bankiers, denen die klamme Reichsstadt Augsburg gegen die Zahlung hoher Gebühre und der Gewährung fürstlicher Kredite die feste Ansiedlung in Augsburg gewährte. Seine Vater Ephraim Ulmo entstammte der berühmten Ulmo-Famile und war Vorsitzender der Pferseer Gemeinde. Seine Mutter Brendel (gest. 1779) war die Tochter des Rabbiners Schmuel Erlanger.

Er heirate Chana Wertheim, die Tochter von Loew und Enkelin von Schimschon Wertheim aka Samson Wertheimer. Ihre Tochter Klara Ullmann heirate 1807 Mosche Levi aka Moritz Loewenberg aus Hohenems (siehe Eintrag 7. Dezember 2007).

Elchanan, der seinen Wohnsitz in Kriegshaber behielt, starb bereits am 11. Februar 1807, seine Frau Chana aka Hauna folgte ihm am 11. September 1811 (externe Quellen nennen allerdings auf unklarer Grundlage das Jahr  1807). Beide sind am Kriegshaber Friedhof bestattet. Ihr Doppelgrabstein ist nur noch teilweise erhalten geblieben. Bei unserem bereits dritten aufeinanderfolgenden Nittel am Friedhof haben wir ihn ein weiteres Mal vom Wildwuchs befreit.

Elchanan ben Ephraim Ulmo (1750-1807) and Chana, nee Wertheimer, granddaughter of Shimshon Wertheim are buried at Kriegshaber Jewish Cemetery.


Gräber am jüdischen Friedhof Haunstetter Str. in Augsburg Hochfeld

December 27, 2009

some winterly impressions from Hochfeld Jewish Cemetery at Haunstetter Str. /Alter Potweg , Augsburg

 Josef Weiss 1921 – 2008

 Jakob ben Gabriel Pemper 1888-1963

 Marianne Cramer, nee Untermayer 1916-2008

   עץ  של נוצרי חג המולד בחלק הרוסי בתוך בית קברות יהודי אוגסבורג


quality discount

December 25, 2009

Jakob Einstein died and his wife phoned the newspaper to place an obituary. She called the obituary department and told, “This is what I want to print: … Jakob is dead.” The man at the newspaper insisted, “But for $50 you are allowed to print six words.” The widow replied, “Okay, then print: … Jakob is dead. Mercedes for sale.”


Challah, Berches, Datschi, Pita – das Brot der Juden

December 24, 2009

In early times whenever they made bread, a piece of dough was set aside for the Kohen: the challa (חלה). In the times after the Bait in Jerusalem, women began to burn the portion in remembrance of the Kohen’s one.  

Today challah is a common name for the bread eaten by Jews on Shabbat and holidays, except Passover of course, when we eat no chametz (חמץ). Another traditional names in Swabia were barches (from Hebrew ברכה, blessing) what in France developed to the quite similar recipe of  “brioche”, or “datsher” and “datshi” (see: Tendlau, Juedische Sprichwörter und Redensarten). The later also refers to a plum flan, which by the name “Datschi” or “Zwetschgendatschi” (the word really is a jawbreaker for English speakers) is considered as local specialty in Augsburg and vicinity. In fall it is so popular that a humorous nickname for Augsburg is “Datschiburg”. But in other regions in Southern Germany there also are other kinds of Datschis with apples or huckleberries, not to forget the “reiber-datschi” (reiben = to rub or rasp), which however is without fruit and rather a kind of pancake made of potato dumpling and fried in a pan (sort of hash browns). It is not quite clear why the name refers to quite different sorts of cakes and pastries.

A traditional Ashkenazi challah now is a plaited loaf, non-Jewish Germans would call that a “zopf” (plaited loaf). Most recipes use flour, eggs, water and sugar. Sephardi or oriental Jews use no braided loaf, but a flat one, similar to a pita or flatbread.

In frühen Zeiten, wann immer Brot gebacken wurde, wurde ein Teil davon genommen, um es den Kohen zu geben: die Challa. In der Zeit nach dem Tempel, verbrennen Frauen, wenn sie ein Brot backen einen Teil des Teiges in Erinnerung an den Anteil der Kohen. Heute bezeichnet Challa allgemein das Brot das Juden an Schabbes oder an Feiertagen essen, ausgenommen natürlich Pessach, wenn gesäuertes Brot verboten ist und man sich mit trockenen Matzen begnügen muss. Andere traditionelle Namen sind Barches (französisch Brioche, Datscher oder Datschi. Letzteres bezeichnet auch einen populären Pflaumenkuchen, der als Zwetschgendatschi als örtliche Spezialität in Augsburg und Umgebung gilt. Besonders im Spätsommer und Herbst ist er so populär, dass sich der Begriff „Datschiburger“ als scherzhaftes Synonym für Augsburger eingebürgert hat. In anderen Gegenden kennt man freilich auch Datschis mit anderer Auflage, etwa Apfel- oder Schwarzbeer-Datschis, nicht zu vergessen den Reiberdatschi, auch geläufig als „Kartoffelpuffer“, der ohne Früchte auskommt, aber in der Regel mit Apfelmus oder ähnlichem gegessen wird. Warum das zugrundeliegende Wort teilweise recht unterschiedliche Back- und Teigwaren bezeichnet ist unklar, aber auch das Wort „Apfel“ diente in früheren Zeiten zur Bezeichnung unterschiedlicher Früchte, beispielsweise die Apfelsine, eigentlich sinasapfel, also „chinesischer Apfel“, sprich Orange oder der „Erdapfel“ für die Kartoffel, heute noch gängig im Französischen „pomme de terre“.

Eine traditionelle aschkenasische Challa ist nun ein geflochtenes Brot, das außerjüdisch in Süddeutschland auch als Zopf bekannt ist. Die meisten Rezepte, von denen es zahllose Varianten und Vorlieben gibt benutzen Mehl, Eier, Wasser und Zucker oder andere Bestandteile. Sephardische Juden kennen die Tradition des geflochtenen Brotes nicht, sondern essen ein einfaches, ungesüßtes flaches Brot, ähnlich dem inzwischen auch in Europa geläufigen Fladenbrot oder Pita.


The mysterious Pfersee Handschrift

December 22, 2009

 

Dear Marianne Salinger,

I guess you are right, the circumstances are somewhat confused if not abstruse .

Apparantly it is one of those affairs, from which wise people say, you may know quite more about it, if you do not ask any questions. Since once you start with it, you will come to no end and unfortunately to no satisfying result. This is so because there are so many different factors involved you normally would not consider. Maybe Dan Brown should care for it…

First we rely on the information that is provided is true in general. If so, we have a handwritten Talmudic text from Paris, which commonly is dated to the year 1342 … and suddenly two and a half centuries later appears from Italy as property of the Ulmo-Ginzburg family. Another two centuries later there are Rabbis and sages (such as Chaim Azulai and Nathanael Weil…) who turn up in Pfersee … and their reports are the first known eyewitness reports depicting the book, the quantity of text, the structure, order, material, quality, ink and so on. Both reports are from the narrow period 1750-1753 only . Accordingly there even was suggested that the Munich or Pfersee Talmud Handschrift only very briefly was in the possession of the Ulmo family, if at all (see: Fuerchtegott Lebrecht – Handschriften und erste Ausgaben des Babylonischen Talmuds, Berlin 1862, p. 55 ff. and p. 99 ff.). 

 And so the questions begin working: For what reason the two reports from the 1750s differ from the manuscript in Munich regarding the order, content and most important regarding the colophons which give some data as the name of the writer, printer, the date and so on.  For some time there was the assumption that there maybe were two different old Talmudic handwritings, one in Pfersee, one in Munich. This is somewhat confusing of course since the “Pfersee Handschrift” also is known as “Munich Handschrift” (Muenchen). 

Similar to the questions regarding the former owners and the like it is unclear under what circumstances and about what time the Pfersee Handschrift came to Polling. The most precise estimation possible seems to be between 1754 and 1802 …

Apparently there are no catalogs with listings of the purchases the Polling monastery made. But it is known, that the Polling provost Franz Toepsl exceedingly expanded the library and bought numerous books, many in “oriental” languages. In the course of the secularization after 1803 all the books from Polling library were moved to Munich. What also is sure is that in the early 1860s Raphael Rabinovicz from Novo-Zagorny near Kovno (Kaunas) settled in Munich and “discovered” the Handschrift in rooms of the Royal Bavarian Library in Munich. Rabinovicz determined to make a critical examination of it. His financer was an antiques dealer from Munich – a constellation that also is known from other contexts. Before Rabinovicz however there was no academic reflection and debate on the Pfersee or Munich Handschrift. In other words: the Handschrift was unknown before him. On the other hand so far there is nobody who doubts the authenticity of the book , now known as Cod. Hebr. 95.

The actual Handschrift is preceded by several printed pages, one obviously is from the monastery of Polling, others provide table of contents in Hebrew, which already have the actual signature of the Munich library in the printed text (the signature in Polling was – of course – different). So the book in the current state we know was bound in Munich, obviously not before Nathan Rabbinovicz had worked with it.

So there are many more questions if you do not rely on former presumptions and their perpetuation.

Your specific question was whether a wealthy Jewish community who had enough money for loans also had to have money to keep a priceless book. Yes, that’s the way it should be. But … as I have summarized the Jewish witnesses of the book mentioned it about 1750 (and it is not sure if they really described the very same one) and the next undoubted statement on it is that of Raphael Nathan Rabinovicz who obviously arranged the volume and furnished it with tables of content. Older handwritten parts were glued together and placed in front of the handwriting. They are obviously of some age, but they can originate from everywhere – since the binding was made not before the 1870s. In addition there are numerous small handwritten notes at the front and back cover of the book, most of them seem to be writing exercises, for instance the following example:

אני אורי יהודא שליטא

 

The last abbreviates שיזכה לחיים טובים ארוכים

It is questionable if those notes (often regarded as signatures of the former owners) may be older than the cover sheets ..?

However between 1750 and 1870 there are another  120 years without any further explanation. So we also do not know whether the Jewish bankers and lenders from Kriegshaber and Augsburg who financed credits to the broke Free Imperial City of Augsburg in the very beginnings of the 19th knew of the existence of the book at all.

See also:

רפאל נתן נטע ראבינאוויץ 

  ספר דקדוקי סופרים : עם הגהות נקראות דברי סופרים