< Back

Preface Vol 7

<plain_text><page sequence="1">PREFACE. This volume is the first of its publications since the Society completed twenty-one years of activity. The event was celebrated by the holding of an Anniversary Festival Dinner, to which more detailed reference is made in a later part of this Preface. Besides papers read before the Society at its meetings, the present volume includes (a) Documents: illustrating the history of the Jews of Canterbury, the Centenary Paper on Richard Cumberland, the account of the Origin of the Society; (b) Inscriptions: on the Tombstones in the Old Portuguese Cemetery at Middelburg; (c) Bibliography : of Engraved Por? traits, Caricatures, &amp;c, on Lord George Gordon's Conversion to Judaism; (d) Illustrations, of which the number is exception? ally great in honour of the Society's coming of age ; (e) Laws, Lists of Members, Balance Sheets; and (/) Index. Since the issue of Volume VI. of the Transactions the Society has published Studies in Anglo-Jewish History, by the Rev. Dr. H. P. Stokes, now the President of the Society. The office of President was filled with distinction by Mr. E. N. Adler, M.A., from 1912 to 1914. Mr. Gustave Tuck has con? tinued his efficient services as Treasurer, while Dr. M. Epstein has devoted much time and energy to the onerous duties of the Honorary Secretaryship. Thanks to Mr. M. Kleimenhagen, members received copies of his translation of Schleiden's essay on " The Importance of the Jews for the Preservation of vii</page><page sequence="2">Vlll PREFACE. Learning during the Middle Ages." In accordance with the now established practice, fascicules containing papers, presented at our meetings, have been issued. These need not be enume? rated, as they are contained in the present volume. The following meetings have been held since those re? corded in Volume VI. of the Transactions:? 1912, July 1. General Meeting. Mr. E. N. Adler, M.A., elected President for the ensuing Session 1912- 1913. Paper by the Rev. I. Harris, M.A., on " A Dutch Burial-Ground and its English Connections." 1913, Feb. 24. Annual General Meeting. Report and Balance Sheet adopted. Treasurer, Vice-President, and Council elected. Presidential Address by Mr. E. K Adler, M.A., on " Work for the Student of Anglo-Jewish History." April 14. Paper by Dr. C. Duschinsky on " Jacob Kimchi and Shalom Buzaglo." June 2. Paper by Mr. Israel Solomons on " Lord George Gordon's Conversion to Judaism." The paper was illustrated by lantern slides. ? July 22. General Meeting. Mr. E. N. Adler, M.A., was re-elected President for the ensuing Session 1913- 1914. 1914, Feb. 9. Annual General Meeting. Report and Balance Sheet adopted. Treasurer, Vice-Presidents, and Council elected. Presidential Address by Mr. E. N. Adler, M.A., on " England's Hebrew Treasures." ,, March 9. Paper by Mr. Barry Cohen on " The Descendants of Benjamin Levy." ? May 18. Paper by Dr. I. Abrahams and Mr. C. Sayle, M.A., on " The Purchase of Hebrew Books by the English Parliament in 1647." Paper by Mr. H. S. Q. Henriques, M.A., B.C.L., on " Can a Jew7 be Lord Chancellor?"</page><page sequence="3">preface. ix 1914, July 15. Conference on University Extension Lectures on Jewish History. Dr. Abrahams presided. Addresses were delivered by the Rev. Dr. H. Berkowitz, of Philadelphia, and the Rev. Dr. W. Rosenau, of Baltimore. July 27. General Meeting. The Rev. Dr. H. P. Stokes was elected President for the ensuing Session 1914-1915. Nov. 23. Annual General Meeting. Report and Balance Sheet adopted. Treasurer, Vice-President, and Council elected. Presidential Address by the Rev. Dr. H. P. Stokes on "The Manuscripts and Books possessed by pre Expulsion Jewrs." ? Dec. 7. Paper by Dr. L Abrahams on "Treitschke and Graetz." Address by Mr. Lucien Wolf on "Treitschke and Jewish Ideals." 1915, March 15. Paper by Mr. Israel Solomons on "Introduction to a Bibliography of the Works of Haham David Nieto." The paper was illustrated by an exhibition of books, portraits, and prints. The meetings of the Society, at which papers are read, continue to be held in the Mocatta Library, now the per? manent headquarters of the Society. In accordance with the new regulations of the Mocatta Library, no deposit is now required as security for books borrowed for home reading. Every member of the Society has the privilege of borrowing books from the Library, as have also members of the constituent societies of the Union of Jewish Literary Societies on the recommendation of the Honorary Secretary of the Jewish Historical Society. The Mocatta Library and Museum is open on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and also on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday even? ings until 9.30 p.m.</page><page sequence="4">X PREFACE. The Librarian of the Mocatta Library is at present on active military service, but arrangements have been made whereby readers needs will receive attention. A catalogue of the Mocatta Library was published in 1904. A supplementary list (from 1905 to 1909) was pub? lished in 1909, and a second supplementary list (from 1909 to 1911) was issued in November 1911. The following were the Representatives of the Society on the Mocatta Library Committee in the past session:?Sir Isidore Spielmann, C.M.G., the late Mr. Elkan B. Mocatta, Mr. Adler, Mr. Gustave Tuck, Mr. Israel Solomons, and Dr. M. Epstein. As President of the Society Dr. Stokes has now been appointed in place of Mr. Adler. Mr. Owen Mocatta was elected, on the death of his father, to complete our list of Representatives. The Library has an excellent collection of books of Jewish interest, and more especially of books on Jewish History. Among recent additions to the Mocatta Library readers will find a first edition of Prynne's Demurrer (165 6); a copy of Nieto's Matteh Dan (1714); a number of pamphlets on "The Bill to permit persons professing the Jewish religion to be naturalised by Parliament7' (1753); several of Richard Cumberland's plays; all the testimonials and addresses pre? sented to the late Chief Rabbi on the occasion of his seventieth birthday (bequeathed by the late Dr. H, Adler); and some dozen photographs of the Middelburg Cemetery (presented by the Rev. I. Harris, M.A.). Moreover, the Maccabseans have placed in the Library on loan an album of Jewish notabilities which was prepared for the First Inter? national Races Congress, and the Standing Committee of the Conference of Anglo-Jewish Ministers a framed portrait of the late Dr. H. Adler, Chief Rabbi. The Society has acquired the collection of MSS., notes,</page><page sequence="5">PREFACE. xi and annotated volumes belonging to the late Myer D. Davis, one of the pioneers in Anglo-Jewish historical research and a staunch friend of the Society. The collection has been housed in the Mocatta Library, and it is hoped that, after having been carefully catalogued, portions of the work of Myer Davis may be published from time to time. In April 1913 the Jewish Publication Society of America celebrated its Semi-Jubilee, and an address was sent on the occasion. It was dated February 18, 1913, and was worded as follows :? The Jewish Historical Society of England to the Jewish Publication Society of America. All who love JewTish literature will rejoice at this opportunity of congratulating the Trustees and other officers of the Jewish Publication Society of America. For twenty-five years you have been active in behalf of a great ideal?you have encouraged the production of Jewish books, and you have organised a large band of readers. This twofold function you have performed without any truckling to a supposed popular taste; you have given of the best, and have made that best popular. It is a tenable view that Judaism cannot be in a sound condition unless a good proportion of its followers are students, not necessarily or primarily technical scholars, but lovers of books and devotees of that type of culture which literature alone can enshrine and propagate. For your services in recognising this position you will receive the thanks of the whole Jewish world. But we in particular have a special reason for forwarding these words of felicitation. For a considerable period we worked with you on the joint production of books, and were only com? pelled to interrupt this co-operation when we felt bound to concentrate all our energies on the publication of Anglo-Je wish Records, and the maintenance of the Mocatta Library and Museum. None the less, this close association with you will always be regarded by us as a happy and honourable incident in our history. Several of the leading members of our Society have been numbered among the authors whose works have been published by you. They</page><page sequence="6">Xll PREFACE. desire to be prominently associated with this Address. And one and all we venture to express the hope that your future will be as distinguished as your past, and that the enterprises which you have in hand or wTill hereafter undertake, may prosper. Those who best know what you have already done are the most confident as to the great things you are destined to accomplish. Professor Richard Gottheil, of Columbia University, and a Corresponding Member of our Society, was our repre? sentative at the celebration in Philadelphia; he reported that the " Memorial was received with very much pleasure and satisfaction." A year later, on April 27, 1914, the Jewish Historical Society of England celebrated the twenty-first anniversary of its foundation by a Public Dinner, over which the Right Hon. Lord Reading, Lord Chief-Justice of England, presided. The gathering, which was held in the WharnclifTe Rooms, Hotel Great Central, was attended by 380 ladies and gentle? men, and was eminently representative of Anglo-Jewry. The Right Hon. Lord Reading proposed the toast of " The Jewish Historical Society of England." Response was made by Mr. Lucien Wolf, the President of the first session, and Mr. Adler, the President of the twenty-first. " Science and Literature " was proposed by Mr. W. L. Courtney ; Sir William Osier and Mr. Israel Zangwill responded. The Very Rev. the Chief Rabbi proposed the toast of the " Guests/' to which Sir F. G. Kenyon and Professor Vinogradoff responded ; and " The Chairman " was toasted by Dr. Israel Abrahams. The Jewish Chronicle of May 1, 1914, commented on the function as follows:? "We congratulate the Jewish Historical Society on its coming of age, as well as on the delightful manner in which it celebrated that interesting occasion.It is heartening to us all that an organisa</page><page sequence="7">PREFACE. xiii tion of this description should have managed to survive for twenty-one years in the not altogether favourable environment of Anglo-Je wry. Partly, no doubt, it is due to the fact that the men who started it builded well and truly. But something must also be put down to that love of the past?and in particular to the Jewish past?which has not entirely forsaken a people now classed with the moderns of the moderns. The Society has done good work. It has held up the mirror to bygone days and recalled a history which is even to-day repeating itself in reputedly civilised States." The American Jewish Historical Society sent its con? gratulations in the following terms:? American Jewish Historical Society, 38 Park Roto, New York, April 3, 1914. Elkan N. Adler, Esq., M.A., President, The Jewish Historical Society of England, 15 Copthall Avenue, London, E.C., England. My dear Sir,?On behalf of the American Jewish Historical Society we have the honour and the pleasure to tender the hearty congratulations of the officers and members of this Society to the Jewish Historical Society of England on its entrance into the twenty-first year of its existence. We extend to you cordial expressions of our goodwill and of our highest hopes for the future welfare of your organisation. We especially acknowledge the indebtedness of all students of Jewish history to the valuable labours of the members of your Society, made known in your Transactions, and in the separate volumes which you have issued. Much of the early history of the Jews on the American Continent and the adjacent islands has a direct relationship to the researches of your members, and we have greatly profited by them. We are privileged to have enrolled in the membership of our own Society several of your active workers and Past-Presidents, and through their private co-operation our own efforts have been greatly aided. We feel that your Society, like our owTn, has the double function to bring together the materials for the history of the Jews in our respective</page><page sequence="8">XIV PREFACE. lands in order that the future historians of universal Jewish history shall adequately be able to write the respective chapters, and that in doing this w7e shall at the same time contribute the materials which will enable historians of the lands in which we are settled to appreciate the part played by the Jews w^ho have been domiciled in England and in America. Your Society has in the past done distinguished work in your chosen field, and in view of the numerous points of contact between the history of the Jews in England and America you have made and published researches of great value to our Society. We trust that through the fellowship and inspiration which will undoubtedly be derived from the Festival Dinner which you are about to celebrate, renewed opportunities will come to your Society for the carrying on of your labours, and wTe ask you to transmit from your American colleagues to the Company meeting under the Chairmanship of the Right Honourable Lord Reading, Lord Chief-Justice of England, the expression of the hope that your Society's prestige and prosperity and effectiveness may increase to the advantage of our common historical science. We have the honour, Sir, to subscribe ourselves on behalf of the American Jewish Historical Society, Yours very faithfully, Cyrus Adler, President. Albert M. Friedenberg, Corresponding Secretary. The following message was also received from Mr. Jacob H. Schiff, of New York :? Adler, 15 Copthall Avenue, London. Sincerest congratulations and good wishes to you and the members of the Jewish Historical Society upon the attainment of the latter's majority. Wherever we may have become part and parcel of other nations our people must not forget their great past and the certainty of a great future as long as they maintain the wonderful religion which unites us.?Schiff.</page><page sequence="9">PREFACE. XV It is with gratitude that we place on record our warm appreciation of the labours of the Rev. S. Levy, M.A., and Mr. Sidney Mendelssohn, who acted as the Hon. Secretaries of the Celebration Dinner, and whose efforts, splendidly aided by those of Mr. Adler and Mr. Gustave Tuck, President and Treasurer respectively of the Society, helped to make the function a complete success. The finances of our Society were placed on a sound basis, and even more welcome was the accession of 120 new members. The membership now exceeds 400, of whom more than 375 are subscribing members. As a further memorial of this event, the present volume of Transactions is inscribed to Mr. Lucien Wolf, the first President of the Society. It will be observed that among the Society's meetings was a Conference on University Extension, at which addresses were delivered by Drs. H. Berkowitz and W. Rosenau. The plans then proposed have matured, and the London University ?in co-operation with our Society, with the Union of Jewish Literary Societies, and with Toynbee Hall?has arranged a course of Ten Lectures on the period, " From Mendelssohn to Herzl," beginning on April 13, 1915. On the invitation of the British Academy the Society took part in the International Congress of Historical Studies which was held in London on April 3, 1913, and subsequent days. The Society's Representatives were Mr. E. N. Adler, M.A. (President); the Rev. S. Levy, M.A.; and Mr. Sidney Mendelssohn. The Society participated, in 1914, in the commemoration at Oxford of the seventh centenary of Roger Bacon's birth. The President (Mr. Adler) was the Society's representative, and a copy of the volume of Essays published in connection with the celebration has been deposited in the Mocatta Library. VOL. vii. b</page><page sequence="10">xvi PREFACE. Attention may here be called to the Society's publication of valuable essays, by Dr. S. A. Hirsch, on Roger Bacon. Dr. Hirsch also contributed the essay on Philology to the Oxford volume on Bacon mentioned above. The Society has continued its annual subscription of ?5 as a constituent of the Union of Jewish Literary Societies, which during the Session 1914-15 has been under the Presidency of the Chief Rabbi. Our Society is happy to have secured his close co-operation in its work, for Dr. Hertz is now a member of the Executive Committee. At the Union's Conference at Newcastle the Society was represented by Messrs. M. A. Spielmann and Lionel Brown. The dividend on the Asher I. Myers Memorial Fund has been utilised by presenting publications of the Society to schools and classes for distribution as prizes for Jewish history. During the past two years the institutions selected under this arrangement have been the Teachers' Training Classes (J.R.E.B.) and the East London Synagogue Classes. The Rev. S. Levy, M.A., has directed this branch of the Society's work with much success. Through his instrumentality, moreover, many volumes of our publications have been sold to members and others, and a useful addition has thus been made to the Society's income. Mr. Levy has also assisted in the editing of the publica? tions of the Society. This work has been done by Dr. I. Abrahams with the co-operation of the President, the Honorary Secretary, and Mr. Levy. A donation of five guineas was made to the Central Com? mittee for National Patriotic Organisation. That Committee has decided to publish, in pamphlet form, the Address delivered by Mr. Lucien Wolf at the meeting of the Jewish Historical Society on December 7, 1914.</page><page sequence="11">PREFACE. XV? As regards the illustrations we have to thank, for the use of materials, the authorities at the National Portrait Gallery; Canterbury Cathedral; Christ's College, Cambridge; Trinity College, Cambridge; University College, London, and the Mocatta Library: also Mrs. M. D. Davis, the Rev. I. Harris, Mr. Sidney Mendelssohn, Mr. Maurice Myers, Mr. Vandyk; and, in a special degree, Mr. Israel Solomons, who has generously placed many rarities from his fine collection at our disposal. A catalogue of his Prints would be valuable for many classes of students, and we are happy to be able to announce that Mr. Solomons has consented to prepare such a catalogue for publication in the Society's Transactions. It has long been felt that it would be desirable to print materials which do not readily lend themselves to treatment in set papers. Various volumes of the Transactions have con? tained matter not presented at our meetings. It has now been decided to develop this feature, and a beginning is being made in the opening fascicules of Volume VIII. Notes will, from time to time, be printed under the general description " Miscellanies." It is hoped that members and others will supply the material necessary to make the " Miscellanies" worthy of their purpose. A considerable part of Volume VIII. of the Transactions will soon be issued in fascicule form to members. Plans for further publications are under consideration. Mr. J. M. Rigg is unable to continue his valuable work on the Calendar of the Jewish Plea Rolls, but Dr. Stokes has generously undertaken to supervise the completion of the work. Dr. Stokes has also examined the Westminster Documents, and a Report on the subject will be presented. Dr. Abrahams has consented to collaborate wTith Mr. Lucien Wolf in preparing for press a volume on the Records of the Canariote Inquisition. Thus</page><page sequence="12">xviii PREFACE. there is much important work in hand, and more remains. The Executive would gladly suggest definite pieces of work to any students willing to give their services. In particular the Committee would welcome workers, both in London and the provinces, for the recording of epitaphs, for the cataloguing and description of synagogue archives and objects of art, and for the examination of such local records as may throw light, both from the literary and the archaeological points of view, on the history of the Jews in England and the British Empire. The Mocatta Library and Museum, University op London (University College), Gower Street, London, W.C.</page></plain_text>