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The Peace Banquet

<plain_text><page sequence="1">THE JEWISH HISTORICAL SOCIETY OF ENGLAND. The Peace Banquet. A large gathering, representative of all sections of the community, assembled on Thursday, January 22,1920, in order to celebrate the Peace and to do honour to the Semi-Jubilee of the Society (1893-1918). The Rt. Hon. the Earl of Reading, then Lord Chief Justice of England, presided, and he was supported by many notabilities, including the Lord Chancellor and the American Ambassador. The names of those who were present are as follows : Mrs. Abrahams, Mr. A. Abrahams, Mr. and Mrs. Alphonse Abrahams, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur A. Abrahams, Dr. and Mrs. I. Abrahams, Mr. Neville Abrahams, Mr. E. N. Adler, Mr. Herbert M. Adler, Rev. M. Adler, The American Ambassador, Mr. and Mrs. Edward Angell, Mr. J. M. Ansell, Mr. and Mrs. J. Aronstein, Mr. and Mrs. D. Assersohn. Mr. and Mrs. M. Behr, Mrs. Baron, Mr. M. Barrasch, Mr. and Mrs. R. Barro Sicree, Mr. and Mrs. Albert I. Belisha, Mr. Jack Bell, Mr. and Mrs. S. Beloff, Mr. and Mrs. E. Benjamin, Mr. and Mrs. F. D. Benjamin, Mr. Herbert Bentwich, Mr. and Mrs. Norman Bent wich, Mr. I. Bibousif, Lord Birkenhead (The Lord Chancellor), Mr. and Mrs. S. Blooman, Mr. Max J. Bonn, Viscount Burnham. Mr. I. Cansino, Mr. L. Cansino, Mrs. Caselberg, Mr. M. Cash, Mr. and Mrs. Magnus Castello, The Chinese Minister, Mr. and Mrs. S. A. Claff, Mr. Dennis Cohen, Captain and Mrs. D. H. Cohen, Miss Geraldine Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. H. D. Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Cohen, Mr. Israel Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. P. L. Cohen, Major and Mrs. J. B. Cohen, M.P., Mr. and Mrs. R. Waiey Cohen, Mr. Saville Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. Sidney H. Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. S. Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. M. Corcos, Mr. J. Curtis, Mr. H. J. Coburn, Miss Coburn. Daily Chronicle, Daily News, Daily Telegraph, General and Mrs. Perry Davey, Mr. and Mrs. A. Davis, Miss Winifred Davis, Miss Ruth Davis, Rev. B. O'Doherty, Mrs. J. Dreyfus, Mr. Trevor Dreyfus, Miss Hilda Dutch. Dr. and Mrs. M. Dutch, Dr. and Mrs. S. Daiches. VOL. IX. B</page><page sequence="2">2 THE PEACE BANQUET. Mr. 0. Eckers, Mr. and Mrs. A. Edelstem, Dr. and Mrs. Epstein, Mr. and Mrs. S. Epstein, Mr. and Mrs. H. Espir, Mr. F. Emanuel. Mr. and Mrs. Max Falk, Dayan and Mrs. Feldman, Mr. B. A. Fersht, Miss Fersht, Mr. Harry Flatau, Mr. and Mrs. S. Flatau, Mr. and Mrs. S. Flem? inger, Mr. and Mrs. J. G. Fless, Miss Gregory Fostsr, Sir Gregory Foster, Mrs. F. S. Franklin, Mr. E. L. Franklin, Miss B. Fraser, Mr. and Mrs. I. Fraser, Mr. J. Fraser, Mr. Joseph Fraser, Mr. M. Fraser, Mr. and Mrs. Fredman, Mr. M. Fredman, J.P., Captain and Mrs L. Freedman, Mr. and Mrs. A. Freedman, Mr. and Mrs. 1. Freedman, Mrs. B. Friedlander, Dr. I. Friedlander. Haham Dr. and Mrs. Gaster, Mr. E. Gehr, The Globe, Mr. and Mrs. B. S. Gluckstein, Mr. and Mrs. R. Gold, Mr. P. Goldberg, Mr. and Mrs. S. J. Gold? berg, Mrs. Lily Goldstein, Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Goldston, Mr. and Mrs. A. Gollancz, Dr. and Mrs. H. Gollancz, Sir Israel and Lady Gollancz, Mr. A. Goodman, Mrs. B. Goodman, Mr. and Mrs. C. Goodman, Miss F. Goodman, Rev. and Mr?. H. Goodman, Mr. L. J. Greenberg, Mr. M. Grossman, Mr. and Mrs. A. M. Gundle, Mr. J. Gundle, Mr. and Mrs. R. Gournick. Mr. R. W. Hanson, Miss R. Harris, Miss H. de Haas, Mr. S. E. de Haas, Rev. Isidore Harris, Mr. Marcus Harris, Mr. Wolf Harris, Mr. and Mrs. Angel Hart, Mr. John Hart, Mr. Paul Ha vine. Mr. Basil Henriques, Mr. and Mrs. H. S. Q. Henriques, Mr. J. Morley Headlam, Dr. and Mrs. J. H. Hertz, Mr. and Mrs. M. Himmelblau, Dr. S. A. Hirsch, Mr. J. Hockley, Dr. Hockman, Mr. and Mrs. A. Howitt, Mr. S. Harvey, Mr. C. P. Hyman. Mr. and Mrs. Hyman Isaacs. Mr. and Mrs. E. J. Jacobs, Mr. Ernest Jacobs, Mr. and Mrs. J. Jacobs, Mr. and Mrs. Louis P. Jacobs, Mr. M. Jacobs, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Jacobs, Mr. Arthur Jaffe, Sir Otto Jaffe, Jewish Chronicle, Jewish Express, Jewish Guardian, Jewish Times, Dr. and Mrs. D. Jochelmann, Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Jonas, Mrs. Alex. Joseph, Mr. A. D. Joseph, Mr. Albert E. Joseph, Major E. M. Joseph, O.B.E., Mr. F. Joseph, Mr. Jack Joseph, Rev. M. Joseph, Mr. A. Josaphat, Mr. H. Jenkinson, Mrs. Jenkinson. Mr. M. Kelly, Mr. and Mrs. S. J. Kempner, Mr. and Mrs. M. M. Keyser, Mr. and Mrs. M. Kirscher, Mr. E. R. Kisch, Miss C. Kisch, Mr. H. M. Kisch, C.S.I., Mr. A. Kopetsky. Dr. and Mrs. Landau, Mr. and Mrs. M. M. Landau, Mrs. A. M. Langdon, Mr. Hereford Lavey, Mr. and Mrs. S. 0. Lazarus, Mr. J. Leveen, Mr. and Mrs. A. Levine, Rev. and Mrs. E. Levine, Rev. S. and Miss Levy, Mr. Eliot Lewis, Mr. and Mrs. Harry R. Lewis, Mr. and Mrs. R. B. Lewis, Mr. E. Lipson, Mr. M. Liverman, Rev. and Mrs. J. Livingstone, Mr. A. De Lowe, Dr. and Mrs. Lowbury, London Press Association. Mr. and Mrs. Laurie Magnus, Mr. and Mrs. J. Maizels, Mr. and Mrs. M. Mendelssohn, Miss Vera Mendelssohn, Miss Irene Marcouse, Dr. and Mrs. J. Marcouse, Mr. H. C. Marks, Mr. and Mrs. J. Meiler, Rev. and Mrs. B. D. de</page><page sequence="3">THE PEACE BANQUET. 3 Mesquita, Mrs. D. Meyer, Miss H. J. Meyer, Mr. and Mrs. M. Meyer, Mr. Theo? dore Meyer, Mr. M. Cyril Michael, Mr. J Milhoff, Morning Poster. B. Morris, Mr. Isidore Morris, Dr. and Mrs. C. S. Myers, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Myers, Mrs. Maurice Myers, Mr. and Mrs. Simon Myers. Mr. and Mrs. J. N. Nabarro, Major Nathan, Sir Matthew Nathan, Sir Frederick and Lady Nathan, Mr. and Mrs. M. H. Nathan, Mr. L. Newcombe. Miss Olschwang, Mr. H. Oppenheimer. Colonel and Mrs. J. H. Patterson, Miss Bella Phillips, Mr. and Mrs. D. Phillips, Mr. Woolf Phillips, Mr. C. M. Picciotto, Mr. and Mrs. L. Pilichowsky, Mr. and Mrs. J. Prag, Rev. and Mrs. H. L. Price. Mr. L. L. Price, Miss L. Prince, Mr. B. B. Prince, Miss T. Prince, Rev. G. Prince, Mrs. J. Prince, Mr. and Mrs. N. G. Prince. Mr. E. Raphael, The Earl of Reading, Major A. Richardson, D.S.O., M.C., Mr. N. Richardson, Rev. M. Rosenbaum, Mr. and Mrs. Murray Rosen? berg, Mr. P. Rossdale, Mr. James Rossdale, Lord Rothschild, Mr. Anthony de Rothschild, Mr. and Mrs. S. Rowson. Dr. and Mrs. R. N. Salaman, Mr. and Mrs. M. Salinger, Mrs. D. E. Samuel, Sir Stuart and Lady Samuel, Miss Eileen Samuel, Miss Enid Samuel, Mr. and Mrs. F. Samuel, Miss Margaret Samuel, Mr. Selim Samuel, Justice Sankey, Mr. and Mrs. S. Sasserath, Mr. D. Duke Sassoon, Mr. and Mrs. M. Schalit, Miss S. Schalit, Mr. S. Schalit, Mr. Jacob Schapiro, Mr. and Mrs. L. Scheier, Mr. E. H. Schiff, Mr. Otto Schiff, Mr. H. S. Schildkraut, Mr. and Mrs. L. Shaerf, Mr. and Mrs. A. Shonfield, Mr. and Mrs. G. Shonfield, Sir Claud Schuster, K.C., Miss Alice Schwersee, Mr. S. H. Schwersee, Miss Silverman, Mr. and Mrs. B. Silverman, Rev. and Mrs. Vivian G. Simmons, Dr. and Mrs. J. Snowman, Mr. and Mrs. David Solomon, Mrs. D. Solomon, Mr. Digby Solomon, Mr. James H. Solomon, Mr. Joseph Solomon, Mrs. Lewis A. Solomon, Miss Solomon, Mr. Lewis A. Solomon, Mr. and Mrs. R. B. Solomon, Mr. S. J. Solomon, R.A.,Miss Violet Solomon, Mrs. Soltz, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Soref, Mr. and Mrs. M. Spero, Miss B. Spero, Mr. and Mrs. M. A. Spielman, Miss Winifred Spielman, Mr. F. S. Spiers, Miss Kate Spiers, Mr. and Mrs. L. Spiers, Rev. J. F. Stern, Miss G. Stettauer, Canon Stokes, Miss R. E. Strahan, Mr. and Mrs. H. Strauss, Mr. and Mrs. Justin Strauss, Lord and Lady Swaythling, Miss S. Samuel. Mr. and Mrs. Adolph Tanburn, Mr. L. Tanburn, Mr. and Mrs. M. Tanburn, Mr. J. H. Taylor, The Times, Sir Adolph and Lady Tuck, Captain Desmond A. Tuck, Mr. and Mrs. Gustave Tuck, Miss Muriel Tuck, Miss Sybil Tuck, Major and Mrs. W. R. Tuck, Mr. Joseph Tumim, Mrs. S. Tumim, Mr. E. Turk. Mr. and Mrs. D. Van den Bergh, Mr. and Mrs. A. Van den Bergh, Miss Van den Bergh, Dr. M. Vishnitzer. Mr. P. S. Waley, Mr. Lionel D. Walford, Major Weil, Dr. Sydney Russell Wells, Mr. J. Wilkinson, Mr. J. Wilmot, Mrs. S. Wilmot, Mr. and Mrs. M.</page><page sequence="4">4 the peace banquet. Winkel, Mr. Lucien Wolf, Mr. and Mrs. W. Wolf, Mr. and Mrs. Jonas Wolfe, Mr. and Mrs. E. A. Woolf, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Woolf, Mr. and Mrs. Mortimer Woolf, Mr. Gustave Woolstone, Mrs. Weinberg, Mr. P. Wachmann, Mrs. Wachmann, Mr. M. Wachmann, Miss Wray. Mr. and Mrs. I. Zangwill, Mr. E. Zeitlin, Mr. Elsley Zeitlin, Mrs. and Miss D. Ziman. After Grace had been spoken by the Rev. E. Levine, M.A., and the loyal toasts had been honoured, the Chairman proposed the toast of the Jewish Historical Society of England. LORD READING'S SPEECH. Before I proceed to give you the toast which must, even with all due regard for the importance of those that follow, be considered that of the evening, will you let me extend on your behalf to the distinguished guests who are here present to-night, the heartiest welcome of the Society ? We are indeed honoured by their presence this evening, and take a special pleasure that they are here to join with us in the new start, after the war, of this Association. The toast which I am about to propose to you is, " The Jewish Historical Society of England." It is a twofold toast, because we must not forget?and indeed who can forget ??that we are met to-night not only to celebrate the twenty-five years of the existence of this Society, and its fresh start after the war, but also that we meet together to celebrate peace. This Society has existed since the year 1893. If I were to tell you that I am familiar with all its activities, you would do me the honour of pretending to believe me, but you would probably think that with other activities of life it has not been quite easy for me to make myself acquainted with the wonderful work of this Association. I can say this : from such study as I have been able to give to its labours, that it has performed a beneficial and useful function, in that it records the history of our community in this country since its earliest time. anglo-jewish history. There are those who trace us back to the early Anglo-Saxon period, and there is no doubt of our existence during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, and later. If anyone had any doubt he might turn with advantage to the legal roll, and he may also find the records of the</page><page sequence="5">THE PEACE BANQUET. 5 Exchequer and there he will understand and may perhaps usefully study the meaning of the term " Capital Levy." So far as I have been able to gather, both from my studies of English history when at school, and also from my perusal of the records of this Society, I find that that formed a not unimportant part of our community in those early days. But during that time, perhaps it might not be quite so well remembered, there were men of distinction among our community who were singled out for high places, as representing the heads of the community and were in touch with the Crown, and occupied positions to which they were nominated by the Crown for that purpose. I will not dilate upon the records of the work of the Arch Presbyter, nor on all the various men who have followed him. There is some confusion of time when you get to the name, but the fact remains that they did play a part and a noble part, and English history is in part composed of those matters, and we are in our community rather glad to devote labours to studying those records, to compiling them not only for our own benefit, as it is right that we should know our own history, but also that we may be of some assistance to English history. Indeed, it would not be complete without some statement of what has happened in the past to our community. Now it is a fascinating subject, and I find myself inclined to dwell upon it. I would like to go through a short survey of it, if it were not that I find your President, Mr. Henriques, looking at me when I mention it with the kind of expression that becomes familiar in the faces of after-dinner speakers who have to reply to a toast, which suggests " If you do, you will be taking away all that I have prepared in answer to this toast." ENGLAND AND AMERICA. I must content myself with telling you the object, very briefly, as I have done, remembering that you will have both the President, Mr. Henriques, and Mr. Lucien Wolf, the first President of this Society, to reply to the toast, and after they have spoken I doubt whether, even in the short space that they will occupy, there will be anything else for anybody to say upon this subject. I am also reminded when looking at your toast list, that it cannot be called short. I am glad that there is the opportunity before His Excellency, the American Ambassador, of showing him what we can do in the way of a toast</page><page sequence="6">6 THE PEACE BANQUET. list in England. Of course, America is a much bigger country than England, and I could not attempt, nor could we attempt, to rival it. I have been present at a banquet in your country, sir, where there were seventeen speeches, and we did not finish until somewhere about half-past one in the morning. Out of mercy to you, and also remembering that it is the duty of a Chairman to set an example by being brief, I do not propose to say any more on this subject than to make what might appear a chilling utterance, were it not that I know that the warmth of your hearts will thaw the chill, and that you will respond. appeal for funds. I appeal only to members of our own community, and to them I will say, that it is necessary, as some of you, who may not perhaps be totally unacquainted with finance, may know, that money must be found in order to carry on the work of the Society. During the war, the work of this Society was in abeyance. Those who were connected with it were devoting their labours to the public services, or if they were of age, were taking part on the field of battle. No collection was made during that time. Don't think me a nuisance, and please don't think me a bore, if I say to you now," Before you go this evening, do remember that the Society can only exist if you care to support it." There is one thing on which we do pride ourselves in the community, and it is that when there are matters of this kind for which money has to be found we find it among ourselves, and take care not to intrude our demands upon those who are not members of it. Now, sir, and ladies and gentlemen, let us also remember the second part of this toast. jews and the war. We are here to-night on an occasion which really deserves some thought and a passing glance. I will not attempt to keep you with any story of the war, or of the peace that has followed. It is burnt in upon us, and we all know it. But what I would say is that, standing here to-day, at this meeting of our Historical Association of England, we take pride in such part as our community has played in the great aggregate of public service that has been rendered to our country, in the devotion, the patriotic devotion of the citizens, not only</page><page sequence="7">THE PEACE BANQUET. 7 of the United Kingdom, but of the Dominions and the Empire through? out. We are entitled to say that our community has taken its part with the rest?that it has done its share nobly. We take no credit for that; we ask no credit for it. We are proud to have done it, glad to have done it, because we recognise that this is a country which deserves it. Its Jewish citizens should strain to take the foremost part in so far as their capacities will permit, that they may devote the best of their efforts to the advance of the country which has shown such regard for civil and religious liberty. And may I say, when thinking of it, that I would like to associate with that thought that great republic of English-speaking people who also have given to the fullest extent that civil and religious liberty which we prize so much. When the time came for England to make her appeal, the members of our community who volunteered to enlist formed a very reputable proportion of those in the country. 275,000. I wonder whether we all quite remember what the population of the Jewish community, men, women, and children, is in the United Kingdom ? It is altogether computed at 275,000, out of this huge population. We cannot, of course, compare that in numbers with America, which is more fortunate than we ; but we can say that within our own Isles there are 275,000 who are only too eager to take up the duties of citizenship, and to discharge them, not only to the best of their ability, but in such a way that they will confer credit upon the community to which they belong. May I give you a very few figures ??I doubt perhaps whether there is any subject which is so little attractive as figures after dinner, they have a ten? dency to swell?and all I can say with regard to them is that I will give them to you as I obtained them, not exaggerating them, but give them to you impartially and judiciously, as the best of the informa? tion I have been able to obtain. To a large extent they are gathered from the Rev. Michael Adler's pamphlet, The Jews of the Empire and the Great War. The figures are really worthy of just one moment's attention. They show this : that out of the number of 275,000, and adding to them 145,000, making a complete total of 420,000, which represents the Jewish community not only in the United Kingdom, but</page><page sequence="8">8 THE PEACE BANQUET. in all the Dominions, and the Crown Colonies, and the other possessions of his Majesty,?out of that 420,000 there are just over 50,000 who belonged to some branch of his Majesty's forces. They paid their toll as did the others ; they lost their proportion of wounded, of missing, and of killed. They made their sacrifice as did the others, and they stand with them in an equal position ; they have done all they could for their country, and are entitled at least to this, that those who died, died gloriously, for a cause that we are all proud of. WAR HONOURS. Of this number?I will not go through all the list of honours that we have won?but I will tell you, because I think it will interest you if you do not happen to know it, that five of them won the great dis? tinction of the Victoria Cross, fifty obtained the Distinguished Service Order, two hundred and forty the Military Cross, seventy the Dis? tinguished Conduct Medal, two hundred and fifty the Military Medal, and three hundred and thirty were mentioned in despatches. I pause before giving you a further list, that is that of those who obtained foreign honours and other distinctions. All I say to you with regard to those, is that you may take comfort and recall whenever you desire, when the moment comes, that the tribute of citizenship and of patriotism was loyally, nobly, and, let me add, gladly paid by the members of our community. Now having said that to you, I glance at the clock, and find that I have set a bad example ; I have transgressed the rule which I have set to myself, which was that I should address you for but a very few brief minutes. If I have detained you a little longer, you will forgive me I am sure, because of the cause in which I am addressing yon ; and it would hardly be right, that after the war, meeting as we do here at this Society, celebrating the Peace, we should fail to remember those who have done their duty and that we should omit to record in the Historical Association of England what the Jews of England did during the great war. BRITISH LIBERTY. Of the other public services which they may have achieved, let us only remember this : that one and all gladly did what they could.</page><page sequence="9">the peace banquet. 9 Some may have been able to achieve more in high places than others, whose sphere was a humbler one, but I am quite certain that, be the sphere high or low, the same spirit animated every member of the community, and that now, as then, we recognise that the struggle was one which of all others commended itself to us. Our community has been the sufierer throughout the ages, by the denial, the refusal of civil and religious liberties on an equal basis; and when the time came, when the sword was drawn, and the banner was upheld?why, of course, England was to the fore, with all its Dominions, and with all the British people, and with England and its citizens, came all of us, in whatever capacity we might serve; and with that let us remember to-night that we are now celebrating the triumph of that civil liberty, and with it must always be involved as part, indeed as the very essence of civil liberty?religious liberty and toleration of all forms of civil and religious freedom. Aye, and when we add one word more, which means so much to us all, not only ourselves, but to all the world, and to our own people of the British Empire?when we are struggling for justice, then again I would say, Is it to be wondered at that our men?trained as they are in the desire for justice, which has come to them for generations, and in the appreciation of that justice which they get in those countries which make no distinction, that our own people should have flocked as they did, and that we should rejoice as we do rejoice, all whole-heartedly, in the tremendous triumph, in the victory achieved by ourselves with our Allies, and with the notable assistance of the United States never to be forgotten ? Therefore it is that I give you this toast, remembering with it that we are cele? brating the Peace, and I will only add to you, in conclusion, that I am sure I speak your thoughts when I say that we rejoice in our hearts that the fight was won which meant so much for that very liberty and justice which we prize so highly, and that the result of it has been that these ideals stand to-day on the highest summit as a symbol of the victory achieved and of the progress to come. THE PRESIDENT'S REPLY. The toast having been enthusiastically honoured, Mr. H. S. Q. Henriques, President of the Society, said in reply: Before I address you, may I read you a telegram from the American Historical Society,</page><page sequence="10">10 THE PEACE BANQUET. which extends to the Jewish Historical Society of England hearty congratulations on the celebration of its semi-Jubilee, and expresses the hope that the Peace which is being celebrated may be a lasting one for the welfare of mankind, and be fruitful in encouraging scholarly pursuits. When I look around at this magnificent assembly, I cannot help thinking of what might have been the reflections, if he could again come to life and be amongst us, of King Edward. I do not mean the great and good king whom so many of us knew and remember, but the first King Edward, who was a man of war, rather than a maker of peace. Might he not if he were here think as follows ?? ISAACS OF READING. " My grandfather John took pleasure in despoiling and mal? treating his Jews, and amused himself at one time for a whole week in daily having extracted a tooth from one Isaac of York, but my descendant King George on the other hand has actually appointed one Isaacs of Reading to be his Grand Justiciary, and that Jew has actually restored to his great office the prestige which I took from it when I suffered its political to be severed from its judicial functions, for in a time of crisis which came upon the whole nation it was he, who was selected in the first place to restore its financial position, and in addition was sent as Special Ambassador to that great and friendly nation which, by joining its forces to ours at the very crisis of our fate enabled this nation to obtain ultimate victory over its enemies, and to establish what all of us hope will be a great and lasting peace." He might also add, alluding to the great cry going on to-day?he could see it in the newspapers?of " Sack the lot." He might say : "In my days, in answer to the prayers of my people, I did sack the lot, and turned them out bag and baggage, but little good came from that. Not only did we no longer receive their financial assistance, but when that merry fellow King Charles was sent upon his travels, he met in the Netherlands a large number of Jews whom he found experts in commercial and financial matters, and he determined to restore them to the country when he himself came back. He did bring them back, and they helped him to establish the then newly-acquired colonies which are so flourishing to-day, and as those people became more and more closely</page><page sequence="11">THE PEACE BANQUET. 11 allied with our nation, the old feelings of enmity and jealousy were converted into feelings of mutual goodwill and confidence. So, as they have borne their full share of the burdens of the war, they are enabled to celebrate with the rest of this people the blessings of peace, which they are doing to-day with the assistance of the Lord Chancellor and a Judge of the High Court?a very characteristic precaution in case they may commit some violation of the extraordinarily complicated licensing, regulations." HISTORICAL CHANGES. There has been an enormous change from King Edward's day to this, which it is the province of our Society to record, to trace its causes and work out its results. In that work we have had the assistance of several learned Christian scholars, among them, if I may mention their names, some of whom I believe are here to-day?Canon Stokes, once our President, Mr. Rigg, and Mr. Hilary Jenkinson. Of our own members, those with us still I need not mention, but of those who have been taken away I would like to record with gratitude the names of Joseph Jacobs, that great scholar and encyclopaedist, the founder with Mr. Lucien Wolf of this Society; of Hermann Adler, the late revered Chief Rabbi; of Frederick Mocatta, that splendid example of the wise and broad-minded philanthropy which has in the past, and I hope ever will in the future, distinguish the noblest sons of Israel. Last but not least Lionel Abrahams, whose all too short career was brought to a premature close, and who in that career proved himself not only a profound student of Jewish history, but also a great and meritorious servant of the State. ACTIVITIES OF THE SOCIETY. The work which we have to perform is not merely one of anti? quarian interest, but of great present practical value, for unfortunately in the countries of Eastern Europe, where the bulk of our people still dwell, they have to face the same dangers, to overcome the same difficulties, which beset us here centuries ago in the past; and if like causes lead to like results, it can be demonstrated that there also the conferment and enforcement of equal rights will produce good feeling where there is now animosity, and concord where there is now</page><page sequence="12">12 THE PEACE BANQUET. discord. Such is the lesson we have to teach, and we ask the Anglo Jewish community for the moderate sum necessary to enable us to teach this lesson properly. I do hope you will not send away our energetic treasurer, Mr. Gustave Tuck, who has worked hard for so many years for this Society, and who has gone to enormous trouble in preparing for this dinner to-night. I say I hope you will not send him away disappointed, or empty-handed. The charge of Bolshevism which has lately been levelled against our community is one that history shows to be absolutely false. If one thing is certain it is this, that we Jews have always been upholders of the rights of property. Some think we have clung to it too closely. We have also always been passionately devoted to our religion, for which the highest sacrifices that could possibly be demanded have been given heroically from generation to generation. We have been prepared to sacrifice even life itself for our religion. But Bolshevism stands for the abolition of property and the negation of religion. Yet, in countries where the government itself has allowed and encouraged persecution and injustice, it is not perhaps surprising to find that there are some among our people who have so far abandoned their principles that they have joined the party most hostile to the Government that oppressed them ; that they have turned their backs upon their principles and have gone in for theories which are abhorrent to every one of us here. But let it always be remembered that such men as Trotsky and his fellows are renegades from our people and apostates from our faith, and that they are repudiated by the vast mass of our brethren in Russia, in the same way as they are rejected by every man present here to-night. LAW-ABIDING ISRAEL. So true is it, as history teaches us, that persecution breeds anar? chism, whereas enlightenment, such as we have here, produces patriotism ; to parody the words of the lawyer poet: " By many names men call uss In many lands we dwell, Well Russian tyrants know us, And England's freemen well."</page><page sequence="13">the peace banquet. 13 Yes, in this country the people who have won liberty for them? selves have generously accorded it to all whom they have allowed to settle amongst them, and of us who enjoy this priceless boon, those who have been born here, have felt from our very earliest days, and those who have come from other countries have been quick to learn a firm and unfaltering loyalty to the land and the people which have given us not a mere shelter, but true liberty and a secure and lasting home. SECOND REPLY BY MR. LUCIEN WOLF. Mr. Lucien Wolf also replied to the toast. He said : I, too, have to thank you, my lord, for the extremely appreciative and generous terms in which you have proposed this toast, and I have also to thank this company for the splendid Amen with which it has responded to them. I have some little suspicion, however, that in the allocation of this extremely pleasant duty to me the organisers of this feast have had as their primary intention really not so much the duplicating of the acknowledgment of your kind references to us, more especially as they knew, and we all knew, how adequate would be the response of our President, Mr. Henriques. I think rather that their intention was to find an opportunity of exhibiting me to you as a living testi? mony to the authenticity of the semi-Jubilee which we are now cele? brating, or perhaps as an illustration of the piety and solicitude with which our Society conserves the relics of our communal life, for, as this toast list has reminded you, I had the honour of being the first President of this Society in the year of its foundation. I am also, I think, the only survivor of that little band of enthusiasts and pioneers who planned it in the middle of the 'eighties of the last century. But, my lord, it is precisely in that capacity that I am filled with gratitude for the gracious things you have said of us, for you may imagine that the Society is peculiarly dear to me, and that I am rejoiced at every evidence of its sturdy and useful manhood. I am extremely proud that it should have found favour in the discrimi? nating judgment of yourself, my lord, and of the distinguished guests who have assembled around you.</page><page sequence="14">14 THE PEACE BANQUET. MEMORIES OF THE PAST. I cannot survey this goodly company without contrasting it with the far-sighted little circle of dreamers who sowed the seeds so much better than they knew thirty years ago, in Alfred Newman's bright little dining-room in Westbourne Park. It is only right that we should devote a thought to those men to-night, and I was glad to hear our President mention some of them. To me they were all very dear, and I could give like him some of their names. There was Joseph Jacobs, the most brilliant and versatile of Jewish scholars, and most delightful of companions ; Myer Davis, who had not the excuse of youth for his enthusiasm, but still his diligence was remark? able ; Asher Myers, the prince of Jewish editors, who had the courage to patronise unpopular causes, and who, in face of a sometimes unsympathetic community, opened his columns for our ideas and articles, and even paid for them ; and, finally, their host, the gay and debonair Alfred Newman, a mondain, an artist, and romanticist to the tips of his fingers, who loved Jewish history, as he loved all pic? turesque things in this world. I should also like to remember a few others who came after them, and who really did the practical work. You have heard Mr. Henriques mention the name of the late Chief Rabbi. I should also like to remember the name of Mr. Frank Haes, who laboured for us so diligently, and there are two men among the living whom I must especially mention, my old friends Israel Abrahams a?d Sir Isidore Spielmann, who gave us a magnificent fillip when he devised and organised the Anglo-Jewish Historical Exhibition. As for Dr. Abrahams, it was he who brought us into the light of day, and who really has been the life and soul of our Society and the inspirer of all the good things we have done. The toast also refers to Peace, and I do not see that there is anyone here who could respond to it better than I. I should like to make one remark upon the excellent comments our Chairman has made upon it. PARIS CONFERENCE. I had the pleasure of going to Paris for the Conference of which our President was so distinguished a member. I had the privilege of seeing something rather closely of the Peace Conference, and I</page><page sequence="15">the peace banquet. 15 should like to say that while it is very easy to criticise the peace that has been made, it is very difficult for anyone to understand the mag? nitude of the task. I do not trouble about this or that territorial agreement, but when I look at the documents of the League of Nations and the International Labour agreement, and finally the minority treaties, which have converted the whole of Eastern Europe to liberty, justice, and tolerance, I say that the peace made in Paris is one of the greatest achievements in history. There are others who must examine more dispassionately, more closely, and more critically, the work that has been done, and also the great work of the Jewish community of this country in fighting in this Great War of Liberation. There are many other tasks that await us. Your gracious words, and the approval of this distinguished company, will encourage us to persevere in our task and to widen its scope. It is with that conviction that I beg to ask you once more to accept from me, on behalf of our Society, this feeble expression of our thanks. Law and History. The next toast, " Law and History," was proposed by Mr. Israel Zangwill, and responded to by the Lord High Chancellor (the Rt. Hon. Lord Birkenhead) and by Haham Dr. M. Gaster (Past President of the Society). MR. ISRAEL ZANGWILL'S SPEECH. When this task was allotted to me, my thought naturally turned to the relations between Law and History. History, of course, has created law, and law in its turn has created history. Law has especially created Jewish history?a sentiment which I am sure will find agreement in the gentleman who is to respond to the second part of the toast (Dr. Gaster). The Greeks made law into a deity unique and mighty, the goddess Themis, and gave her the power of forecasting the future. What did they mean ? They meant that history followed natural laws. For if history, as Boling broke put it, is philosophy teaching by example, we ought to learn</page><page sequence="16">16 THE PEACE BANQUET. from it to forecast consequences. The writings of Burke and Machiavelli teemed with profound generalisations. When, for example, I read Burke's remarks about the baleful influence on our foreign politics of the device of the Double Cabinet?the inner ring of leaders acting without the knowledge of the bulk of the Cabinet?I felt that history does indeed repeat itself. And Maehiavelli's Discourses on the First Decade of Titus Livius provide equally profitable deduc? tions from the past. One finds such maxims from ancient Roman experience as, " One and not more should head an army " ; " A government should not withhold benefits till it is forced to yield them " ; " Conquests made by ill-governed States tend rather to their ruin than to their aggrandisement " ; or, " One humane act may avail more with the enemy than all the might of arms." Columbus?I beg the American Ambassador to note?had only just died when Machiavelli wrote, but we find him predicting that " Well-ordered Commonwealths are assured of a succession of valiant rulers, by whom their power and growth are largely extended." So much for Wash? ington, Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Wilson ! As for dethroned monarchs : " Should they ever grow wise enough," said Machiavelli, " to see how easily princedoms are preserved by those who are content to follow prudent counsels, the sense of their loss will grieve them far more, and condemn them to a worse punishment than any that they suffer at the hands of others." But politicians are ignorant of history, and history repeats itself in vain. I could wish that Dr. Gaster were appointed Examiner in History to the House of Commons, and that without a pass certificate from him no M.P. should be allowed to take his seat. There would, of course, be a stiffer examination before entering the Cabinet; for Peace Conferences an Honours Degree at least. Mr. Wells has sought to give FIRST AID TO POLITICIANS by writing the history of the world. It is the bravest deed I ever saw. That welcome visitor to our shores, Dr. Max Nordau, in his profound book, Der Sinn der Geschichte, had, to some extent, anticipated Mr. Wells in the attempt to interpret history as a whole. And our distracted age needs such a reading. Diderot's Ency? clopaedia sought to unify knowledge for the eighteenth century, but</page><page sequence="17">THE PEACE BANQUET. 17 our contemporary encyclopaedias only made confusion worse con? founded. Mr. Wells has pointed out that history was taught from national standpoints to the national glory and to the total destruc? tion of perspective. Each history was like a corridor, on which lots of doors gave, but what the people did in the rooms before they came into the corridor or after they had banged the door behind them the pupil was never shown. That is not, however, the case with Jewish history, as one might see even in such a localised study as Dr. Gaster's History of the Berns Marks Synagogue. For the Jew was compelled to keep his eye on all the threads of world history; he was inside every door, part of every people in every period, and by his ability to share the life of them all, had proved indirectly that they were all brothers. Mr. Wells is writing his history to help forward the League of Nations. I commend to him this Jewish chapter. No one is more anxious for the League than the Jew, for as Machiavelli wrote in his much-abused work, The Prince: " There are two ways of deciding any contest, the one by laws, the other by force. The first is peculiar to men, the second to beasts." But if the Jew has been able thus to persist without a country of his own, it was only because he was A SON OF THE LAW. With him history and law were so closely connected that but for his law his history would have ceased nearly two thousand years ago. " Make a fence for the Law," said the Rabbis, meaning " guard the purity of its text." But the law itself was the true fence, behind which our further history became possible. The microscopic study of this law in daily life no doubt developed the Jew's legal acumen, and explained his successes at the Bar. There was a popular impression that Talmudical law was an asphyxiating and casuistical network in dreary contrast with the Christian law of love. The illusion came from forgetting that Christendom kept its law outside its religion, putting asunder what Judaism had put together, and rendering unto Reading the things that were Reading's. " D.O.R.A." is surely no less dryasdust than Torah and hardly less voluminous. I doubt if even their noble Chairman was a pundit in all its contents. But of British law I speak as a layman, and a layman of the worst kind, VOL. IX. C</page><page sequence="18">18 THE PEACE BANQUET. for novelist's law and dramatist's law are a byword. Mr. Jerome, I recall, summed up stage law in the immortal canon that when a man dies without leaving a will the property goes to the nearest villain. It is true that Balzac's novel Cesar Birotteau was, according to a French authoress, used by a notary as a reference book in all questions of bankruptcy. But Balzac was the exception?his father was an advocate, and the boy was forced to study law. There are idolaters who prove that Shakespeare was a lawyer because of his correct use of a few technical expressions, doubtless crammed up. But let us consider THE " CAUSE CELjEBRE " OF SHYLOCK. The other day I had the pleasure of meeting Lord Mersey, who was in raptures over Moscovitch's acting. But no word of criticism had that great legal luminary for Shakespeare's bad law. One could pass over the irregular procedure by which a young lady, obviously breaking the sartorial law of sex, and armed with an untruthful in? troduction from the absentee judge, was allowed to officiate at once as plaintiff, pleader, preacher, arbitrator, assessor, sentencer, and Christian conversion]st. But imagine any judge in the great city of the Doges putting forth such nonsense as that if a pound of flesh was owing to you, you could not, save on pain of death, cut less than a pound, even by the twentieth part of a scruple ! More, I grant, would be illegal. But less % A capital offence to take less than your debt % Shylock could surely have cut safely on the " ca' canny " side. But perhaps Shakespeare's silliness was as feigned as Hamlet's mad? ness. Perhaps he was sardonically forecasting the future of the legal profession after the passing of the Women's Enabling Act. Or, more probably, he was satirising the influence of anti-alien pre? judice upon the judicial mind. The Bench of England is prover? bially the seat of incorruptible justice. Decisions have been given recently even against the Crown, that recall the noblest traditions of the British judicature. No more austerely impartial judge than our noble Chairman had ever adorned his majestic position. Nevertheless, the Bench has not utterly escaped the insidious in? fluences of war-fever, and not a few anti-alien decisions as grotesque as Portia's have blotted its record. Englishmen cannot ponder too</page><page sequence="19">THE PEACE BANQUET. 19 deeply the great saying put into Shylock's mouth by the national bard : " If you deny me, fie upon your law ! There is no force in the decrees of Venice !" We are privileged to entertain some of the most distinguished members of the legal profession. The Lord Chancellor I recall, when we both spoke at a Gray's Inn Dinner, not many years before the war, as a slim, elegant youth, plain F. E. Smith, and now he is the central cartoon in Punch?a " national " figure. Was there ever such a " galloper " ? Now he sits on the Woolsack?or is it on the Coalition % But whatever he sits on, it is with no negligible weight. Nor is he one of the politicians who know no history. On the con? trary, he has lectured on it?examined in it?his scholarly record is exceptionally brilliant, and he might easily be associated with both parts of the toast. I must save the history part of it, however, for the venerable Dr. Gaster, and I ask you to drink to Law and History coupled with both those distinguished names. THE LORD CHANCELLOR'S REPLY. My Lord Reading, your Excellencies, my lords, ladies, and gentlemen. The toast which has just been moved by the distinguished member of your Society to whose observations we have listened with so much interest is an enlarged toast. So far as I am aware, it is the largest of toasts in its composite scope ever attempted in an after dinner speech to reply to ; and I observe, looking at the clock as your Chairman advised subsequent speakers to look, although I did not observe him to look, I notice it is twenty minutes past ten, and the toast to which I have to say a few words is that of law and history. Twenty-five years ago I spent three years of my life in lecturing on the subject of law, and twenty-two years ago I spent three years of my life in lecturing as a University Extension Lecturer in teaching and lecturing in history. I cannot expect that you will demand from me to-night more than a very brief composition on my six years' exercises. One or two observations have been made in the course of the speeches to-night which touch upon both subjects, I do not say the twin subjects, of law and history, because I am unable to re? cognise any particularly felicitous inspiration in combining them for the purpose of a single toast.</page><page sequence="20">20 the peace banquet. the 275,000. I confess I was profoundly struck, and I was immensely sur? prised, by the information which our Chairman to-night gave us, that in this country, in the population of these islands which consists of some forty millions of people, there were only 275,000 members of the Jewish community. My lords and gentlemen, if I were a Jew I would be prouder of nothing than this, that so infinitesimal a pro? portion of the total population of these islands has played throughout this period a part so immense in the determination of our national destinies, and even in the very definition of our national character. Two hundred and seventy-five thousand ! It is the population of a small provincial town. Sir, surely never was there a record which ought to be more jealously and more preciously regarded by the people of a community than that, though in numbers so relatively small, it should so exercise an influence so continuous and pervasive over a community not specially easy to influence, such as the community to which you have allied your destinies. Reference was made, I think by your President, Mr. Henriques, who was almost a contempor? ary of my own at Oxford, and who like myself, I think, was a Vinerian law scholar?I think reference was made by him to an early and less happy epoch in which the Jewish community made a contribution, though a different one, to the national fortunes. Well, I would say of those old far-away unhappy days, in language which the ladies will understand, and which some of the gentlemen of the company will also understand, Infandum, regina,jubes renovate dolorem ("Oh, Queen, thou dost ask me to renew an unspeakable grief "). And I may perhaps remind you of a witty Eton boy who once met Queen Victoria driving in Windsor, in her donkey coach. She asked him, " My boy, have you ever been caned ? " to which he replied, Infandum, regina, jubes renovare dolorem. jewish history. Many other topics have been touched upon in the speeches to which you have listened to-night. I would say this of the history of the Jewish people. It began in a story, I suppose of all the stories in the folk-lore of all the world, at once the most conspicuous, the</page><page sequence="21">THE PEACE BANQUET. 21 most distinguished, the most tenacious in the influence which it has exercised over all mankind. "The Chosen People," "the Promised Land ! " My lords and gentlemen, think of those two adjectives. That it should have been said of any one people in all the history of the world that they were the Chosen People, whether it be well-founded or whether it be ill-founded ; that it should be received and accepted in the storied pages of history, that that people, such was the belief, was definitely chosen for marching to the Promised Land?surely that must be counted a most remarkable claim. Then contrast in the tragic disparity which a long examination of history in perspective sometimes affords?the brilliant promise in the childhood of the world with the fortunes of your race in the centuries which followed upon its tragic material fall. Pass in swift and sad perspective through those centuries, of which your President selected one, the early his? tory of the Jews in this country, and trace however rapidly the tragic story of its sufferings in almost every country in Christendom since that period?great in this country, but less great, as I am bold to claim to-night, in this country than almost any other country in Christendom?and then count to yourselves for greatness those quali? ties, I know not what they be?I attempt neither to define them, still less to appraise them?which have made you still, in every country of the world, a power and a distinctive element, which is recog? nised, which has made its influence felt through the centuries, amid the fires of persecution and the irons of tyranny, and which has preserved its character, its qualities, and its individuality. GEORGE ELIOT. I, my lord, am not a Jew, but whenever I meet those who re? present your community in this or any other country, I at least have no difficulty in understanding what led the great novelist of ours in perhaps one of the dullest of her works, nevertheless to strike out some spark of inspiration when she conceived in Daniel Deronda of an Englishman, brought up to believe he was English of the Eng? lish, acquainted in mature life with the swift and suddenly emerging knowledge that he was a Jew, and who welcomed and leaped to the privilege of the birth of which he was acquainted so late, and found a pride in that birth, just because he reflected upon the part that</page><page sequence="22">22 THE PEACE BANQUET. in centuries past had been played by a race so proud of traditions which not all the material forces of the world could extinguish, because they belonged to conceptions which were not material. Things that are material perish, but things which are spiritual, and only those that are spiritual, do not perish. I only ask your leave to add this : Lord Reading has spoken of the martial contribution made by the Jewish population in our midst in the great struggle which has reached a victorious conclusion. I was not astonished to hear the remark? able figures which he gave in illustration of the Jewish contribution to this struggle, because those of us who have studied, however inadequately, the history of the Jewish people, know that they have possessed in a singular degree many of the qualities which make men memorable in the company of men. They have suffered as other communities have suffered, because, at a given moment, they have been small minorities, helplessly impotent to resent the imposition of the wishes and the violence of great majorities. But no attentive student of the history of the fortunes of the Jewish race, from the most remote antiquity to the present day, has ever denied to them the possession of martial qualities by which, and by which alone, in the ultimate resort, men since the twilight of the world have judged men, and by which, as I firmly believe, to the end of the world they will continue to judge men. And by that martial and virile test the Jews can challenge history, and it does not surprise me to find that they are loyal citizens of this great Empire, and that they have played a part which I should think it almost a reflection upon them to par? ticularise more closely than to say this : That just as Welshmen and Scotchmen and Englishmen have played their part, so the Jews who are Englishmen have played their part. JEWISH LINEAGE. In replying to-night to the toast which has just been recommended to you by that very distinguished literary man of whom you are rightly proud, I think it necessary to add this : That I count myself fortunate to be in your company to-night; to be in the company of those who trace back by no obscure affiliations their race to the nation to whose vision the whole of Christian civilisation to-day looks back, a nation of valiant men, devoted women, and of sweet</page><page sequence="23">THE PEACE BANQUET. 23 throated singers, whose inspiration still to-day throbs and vibrates in the world. To you, I who am not of your community say that he would deserve ill of those who had gone before him, and through whom he traces his blood, who, each day that men and women of his persuasion were gathered together, did not retain deep and permanent pride in the ancient history of his race, and of the deep immemorial springs from which you draw your traditions. That tenacity, in my judgment, will make the Jewish people survive as long as civilisation endures. SECOND REPLY BY DR. GASTER. The Haham, Dr. Gaster, also replied to the toast. He said : I find it extremely difficult to follow the eloquent speech of the Lord Chancellor, which was listened to by all of us with so much delight and with rapt attention. He expressed his astonishment at the fact that such a small number of Jews living in this country should be able to exercise such an influence as is alleged upon the public mind and public life in Great Britain. But I as a Jew, and responding to the toast on History, I believe that I am able to explain the posi? tion which the Jews occupy and the influence we are told they are wielding. This handful of men residing here are not men born of yesterday, they are the heirs to the treasures of a grand and lofty tradition. It is the spirit of old that lives in them, which bears them aloft and creates for them that unique position which is so conspicuous among the nations of the world. hebrew genius. For we Jews have been the first to conceive the idea of a uni? versal history embracing all the races of mankind. This is the pro? duct of the Jewish genius. Neither Greek nor Roman, neither Egyptian nor Babylonian, knew or recognised the tie that unites mankind. Their interests were centred in their local commonwealth. Not so with us, and furthermore we preached and taught the grand principle of the unfolding of the Divine plan in human history, so guiding the destinies of man that in all the events which mark the history of the world we see the manifestations of that Divine Providence which</page><page sequence="24">24 THE PEACE BANQUET. shapes and moulds the life of man on his onward march towards freedom, towards righteousness, towards that universal humanity which embraces the whole of mankind and sees in all men the children of God. Unlike the Greeks who start with a Golden Age and descend slowly, deteriorating until we reach the Iron Age, the Jews have taught the continual unbroken progress of man, who starts from the dust of the earth and is to soar up to the heights of heaven. Above all, we have adhered passionately to the conviction that Divine justice ultimately prevails, that every wrong will be righted and every slave will be set free. We have been looking forward throughout the ages, working, hoping for the Messianic period of Divine rule upon earth, for we have never despaired, even when at the bottom of the trough, for we were sure to ride on the crest of the wave which is to carry us to the shore of human happiness. The League of Nations is a mere pale reflection of that grand conception which has buoyed up and sustained our people through all the trials and sufferings of the ages. It is thus a justified pride which makes us feel God's chosen people, for we did not render mere lip service to these grand ideals, we willingly paid for them with our lives. TESTED BY SUFFERING. In the arena of Rome my forefathers fought the wild beasts, and in the blood-soaked fields of Poland and Ukraine my brothers have fought the human beasts and have paid with their lives, for their belief in the unity of God, in the brotherhood of nations, in Divine justice and ultimate salvation of mankind. Our history is a glorious one, for we have taken our full share whenever allowed in all the greatest achievements of the human spirit. There is no important event in history in which Jews have not taken their part. Our prophets and divines, our scholars and writers, are our heroes, and we have written many a page in the world's history with our blood or with the fire of Divine inspiration. It is the conscious? ness of this past which gives us that power, and the unquenchable hope which gives us our value for the spiritual life of the nations. I urge upon you, therefore, to support the Jewish Historical Society, for we begin with the small and we are led on to the great, we begin with little and slowly our sight expands, our mind grows, our</page><page sequence="25">the peace banquet. 25 enthusiasm deepens, and our horizon enlarges, and as in the past so may we in the future learn also to add a golden thread of Jewish faith, of Jewish hope of justice and liberty to the grand web of the British Empire. Statement by the Treasurer. At this point in the proceedings, Mr. Gustave Tuck made the following statement: After having been privileged to listen to the eloquent and in? spiring address of our Rt. Hon. Chairman, the Earl of Reading, who has crystallised, with his wonderful power of expression and lucidity, the aims and the needs of the Jewish Historical Society and its work during the twenty-seven years of its existence, I am emboldened to claim your indulgence for a few brief moments to emphasise a part of the Society's work, the responsibility for which a kind and thoughtful Council vests in me. For fifteen years it has been my honour and privilege to be its Treasurer, but while I fully appreciate the honour, I realise that the position is no sinecure. My office brings me in contact with many leading and renowned men of learning in our community and with scholars outside, who form our Publication Committee, and whose valuable work, as you know, is a labour of love. It has so often been a source of regret to me, after listening to their ambitions and well-thought-out schemes for publication, that I have been compelled to remind them that the wherewithal to carry out such schemes was lacking. This is not surprising, as the Council is acting in a democratic spirit and has not increased the membership subscription, which is only 10$. 6d. yearly. This, in spite of the fact that the cost of the books the Society publishes is about three times the pre-war price. The Earl of Reading to-night, with his silvery tongue, has helped to make the Society's work widely known and appraised. With the kind assistance of the eloquent speakers at to-night's banquet, and with the generous co-operation of you ladies and gentlemen, I am nappy to announce to you that a fair part of the amount we require is already in my hands, and I hope ere the evening is much further advanced to be able to congratulate the Society on having been successful in collecting the whole amount asked for.</page><page sequence="26">26 the peace banquet. The Visitors. The toast of the "Visitors " was proposed by Dr. I. Abrahams (Past-President of the Society), and responded to by the American Ambassador (Mr. J. W. Davis) and by the Et. Hon. Viscount Burnham. DR. I. ABRAHAMS' SPEECH. We have the honour of entertaining to-night many distinguished visitors, and if the hour permitted it would be a pleasure to name all of them to you, and to say something in regard to their accomplish? ments. But there is no need to do this; their names are before you, and these speak for themselves. I will therefore limit myself to the two whose names are associated with the toast. But I will venture to mention one other, and I am sure that you will not wonder at my introducing a military worthy. For we must remember that if we are celebrating Peace, it is because of what our soldiers did. For this reason, indeed for many reasons, I especially bring before you the name of that gallant officer, Colonel Patterson, who has not only won the affection of the Jews whom he led in Palestine, but also of that greater mass of us who, though not all Zionists, claim to be lovers of Zion. We are happy in the two names associated with this toast. At this moment, when the newspapers have it in their hands to make or mar the world's future, it is a good thing to have with us, in the person of Lord Burnham, a man who takes the very highest view of a pressman's duty, and who regards a great newspaper?such as that over which he presides?as a trustee for Truth. Regrettably enough, many journalists?and I am one of them myself?often forget that their records and comments of to-day are the raw material for the historian of the future. If they manufacture shoddy?and the shoddy mills of the country are now working at high pressure? the historian will be unable to make a durable garment. Mr. Zang will has suggested a history test for politicians. May I suggest a similar test for pressmen ? Perhaps Lord Burnham will see his way to start it. Our Society might organise a course of instruction for all ?be they Jews or Gentiles?who write about the Jews, and Editors might resolve to admit contributions on Jewish subjects from</page><page sequence="27">THE PEACE BANQUET. 27 none but those who possess the Society's certificate of competence. Possibly the result would be that most papers would have to be silent about the Jews?a consummation at which we should not seriously cavil. There is one other feature of Lord Burnham's work to which I desire to refer; I mean the great part he has borne in founding and developing the Anglo-French Society, whose aim it is to main? tain the existing entente between England and France. And while Lord Burnham has stretched his hand across the Channel, the Ameri? can Ambassador, who will also address us in reply to this toast, is holding out his hand with wider sweep across the ocean. In any gathering of English Jews, the American Ambassador is sure of a specially cordial welcome. Throughout the nineteenth century, the United States fought for Jewish rights with a persistency, a courage, and a success, which rivalled if they did not surpass the efforts even of our own country. In the latest publication of our Society?Mr. Lucien Wolf's " Diplomatic History of the Jewish Question "~? perhaps the most significant entry is on p. 79, whereon is recorded how in 1911 the American Government denounced its treaty with Russia because of the unequal, intolerant treatment of the Jews under the regime of Tsardom. But I can assure Mr. Davis that we welcome him to-night not on sectarian, but on national grounds. We welcome him because he is a representative of America . When I was in America, addressing American audiences about England, I always looked round to make sure that no other Englishman was present. I will not venture to speak to Englishmen about America when so prominent an American is in our midst. Mr. Davis knows much more about his country than I, though I doubt whether he has seen more of it. In my journeys of many thousands of miles in the United States, from Seattle to Los Angeles, from New York to San Francisco, I learned many lessons; but above all I learned this: America is a land of ideas, with a strong belief in the power of ideas to affect directly the lives of men. And as a corollary, it is a land of optimism, a land with a thorough belief in itself. It was only by this combination?confidence in ideas and in yourself as idealist?that true progress can ever be made. And how imperative is our need to-day for true progress! We</page><page sequence="28">28 the peace banquet. are celebrating Peace, but we must always remember that Peace is not in itself an absolute good. Peace is the cup, not the contents. As the ancient Rabbi said : " Peace is the only vessel that can hold blessing." Well, the vessel has been given to us, but we have got to fill it?I won't say, in the presence of our " dry " Ambassador, to fill it with good wine?but with a wholesome beverage, which cheers whether it intoxicates or not. Ladies and gentlemen, I am sure that when you empty your glasses in drinking this toast?glasses of wine or water, or both alternately?you will do so in the conscious? ness that you are drinking to two men who are doing much to fill to the brim the cup of Peace with draughts of hope and happiness. I give you the toast of the Visitors, coupling with it the names of the American Ambassador and of Viscount Burnham. THE AMERICAN AMBASSADOR'S REPLY. The American Ambassador said : At this hour in your banquet you will expect from me I am sure but a very few brief words?an acknowledgment of your hospitality, an expression of the high com? pliment paid me by your reception of this toast, the pleasure I have experienced in hearing it pronounced by so distinguished a scholar as Dr. Abrahams. I remembered to have seen somewhere an anony? mous essay devoted to proving that there has been no orator of the first rank among English-speaking people who had not in his veins a modicum of Jewish or Irish blood. I always entertained an un? worthy suspicion that that essay had been written either by a Jew or an Irishman, but which is guilty, I leave you to determine, and as I see no Irishman present, you may blame it on him. I have listened to that very eloquent and moving address made by the Lord Chancellor, and I was inclined to think that there might be some hope left for those who belonged to neither category. But in addition to the duty which falls upon me of expressing my personal pleasure and gratification at your kindly courtesy, there is an additional duty incumbent upon me as the representative in an official capacity of perhaps, to-day, the largest number of Jewish people gathered under a single flag. Four years ago I should have said no more with reference to their numbers, than that they stood third in rank. But with the</page><page sequence="29">THE PEACE BANQUET. 29 territorial changes that have been brought about, I think it may be easily proved that there are to-day under the Stars and Stripes more sons of Israel assembled than under any other national emblem ; and I am proud to stand before you to-night, speaking on their behalf, to bring you a message of fraternal regard and brotherhood. AMERICAN JEWRY. I should be bold indeed if in this gathering of historians?and I assume that all members of the Jewish Historical Society are entitled to that designation?if I dared say anything to you of the history of your community in my country. Last night I attended a dinner of the Pilgrims' Society, and I was there reminded that this is the Three Hundredth Anniversary of the voyage of the Pilgrim Fathers to American shores, and the foundation of their Colony at Plymouth, and by a bare score of years later, after the Mayflower had made its brave tempestuous voyage, there came into the harbour of New Amsterdam the Santa Katerina bearing an equally brave number of pilgrims fleeing in their turn from religious persecution to find a new home across the western waves. As the Pilgrim Fathers, so they came by way of Holland, and under the aegis of the Dutch Republic. FIRST JEWS IN AMERICA. It was the first colony of Jews in all America, and the charter which gave them the right to land contained but one condition?that they should look after their own poor, that they might not become a burden on the country or the community, but be supported by those of their own opinion. In all the history of historic charters and national covenants, none has been more sacredly kept than that. It is in my country to-day a tradition that no member of your com? munity could be found who is a charge upon any person other than those of his own faith. Speaking again of that small group of men, I am reminded of another incident, which carries its lesson also. It was more or less of an autocracy in New Amsterdam, ruled in the name of the Dutch India Company, but with an iron hand. By Peter Stuy vesant,</page><page sequence="30">30 the peace banquet. the head of the community, a tax-gatherer was sent for more or less of a capital levy. Asher Levy said to him, " Do all the other members of your community pay this tax ? " " No," said the collector. " Then by what right do you demand it from me ? " " Because," said the collector, " you don't stand guard as the others do," " Oh," said he, " I and my fellows are not only ready and willing to stand guard, but we demand the right to stand guard," and from that day to this your Jewish brethren in America have demanded and have exercised the right with their compatriots to stand guard over American liberty. Washington's wish. It was the father of the country, Washington, who, addressing them in 1790, expressed the hope that the sons of Abraham might find there a land in which they would enjoy the esteem of all their fellow citizens, and find no man to molest them or make them afraid. From that good day to this there has been no office in America, however lofty, to which the Jew might not aspire; there has been no public duty, however humble, which the Jews of America have not been ready to perform. And it is those men to-night?not only because you and they profess the same creed, reverence the same traditions, cherish the same ideals, send across the world your immortal motto, "The God of Israel is one," but because they, having entered America, have become Americans, and you, having stayed here, have remained British? it is they as Americans to-night, who hold out to you the hand of fellowship, and side by side with their countrymen and with yours, confront with firm conviction the trials of the coming future. Less than this, Mr. Chairman, 1 could not find it in my heart to say ; more would be an imposition on your time. SECOND REPLY BY VISCOUNT BURNHAM. Lord Burnham said : I esteem it a very high honour, especially because of the full strain of Jewish blood which runs in my veins, that I am called upon to respond at this great banquet to the toast of the Visitors. I esteem it a yet higher compliment that I am linked in cordial amity with the American Ambassador, the last, but far from the least, of that fine list of envoys of friendship who have been in them? selves the best proof of the high esteem in which America holds the good</page><page sequence="31">THE PEACE BANQUET. 31 opinion of the British Empire. He is one of those who have taught us that after-dinner speaking, instead of being, as with us, a harmless form of self-indulgence on the part of the orator and a painful form of self sacrifice on the part of his audience, is in America a fine art, that has always added much to the pleasures of life. But I am glad also, and you should be too, because he represents that great country which first admitted generation after generation of its youth to the educational facilities which know no barrier of class or creed. HISTORY AS POET. History in the truest sense of the term is the universal poet of all time, and the universal prophet of the future ; it not only gives a record of the achievements of the past, but it is the only justification we have for hope in the coming time. It has been a great loss to the world, and to the world of knowledge, that we have had so little of Jewish history? and I mean not only history of the Jews, but history written by the Jews. The Dark Ages would be less dark, the mighty movements even of the modern world would be better illumined, if we could have a narrative and the opinion of those who have been the eternal refugees in every country of the world. We should better understand the economic and political evolution of ideas if we heard something from those who have been not only the eye-witnesses of what has happened, but who have also had some share as active participators. This Society is doing much to open to all who care the record that it brings to light, and I do not believe that the Jews have any reason to fear the verdict of history. I do not know that we could go quite t? the length of the great Disraeli, who, in one of his best-known books, said that " it was the proud boast of the race to which he belonged that they had never mounted the scaffold except for an auto-da-fe" That may be, like some of his gorgeous rhetoric, an exaggeration, but I am quite certain that the better the Jews are allowed to tell their own history, the better their worth will be understood and appreciated throughout the world. Even that rabbinical literature, which Dr. Abrahams?whom I thank for his kindness to me?is so familiar with, would be hardly known outside a small circle of learned men if it had not been for Robert Browning, some of whose finest poems have been an exposition of Jewish faith and Jewish ideals.</page><page sequence="32">32 the peace banquet. a rabbinical saying. There is one saying, of one Rabbi, which after all is the justification of Jewish ideals. He said, and it is long centuries ago, that his life had taught him that there was only one doubt of which he should be ashamed, and that was to doubt the light of liberty. Well, that is in itself the justification, and, after all (I say it with pride), the funda? mental principle of the freedom of the Press. It is because civilisation can only live and thrive in that light that Jews al] the world over have striven for that light, and it is because of that light that this Society is destined to do a great work, as it has already done, for its name and fame. That gives me a special pleasure in being invited here to its semi-jubilee, and to be allowed for a few minutes to address you. The Chairman. The last toast, "The Chairman," was proposed by the Chief Rabbi (Dr. J. H. Hertz). DR. HIRTZ'S SPEECH. Dr. Hertz, in proposing the toast of " The Chairman," said : Ladies and gentlemen, I rise to give you the last, but certainly not the least, important toast of this memorable evening in the annals of the Jewish Historical Society?that of " The Chairman " of this Peace Dinner, the Lord Chief Justice of England. I have just made use, albeit indirectly, of two key-words of human life?Peace and Justice. Even at this late hour, coming as I do after a minyan of speakers, I cannot resist the temptation of a two-minute excursion into the realm of serious reflection. Jewish history teaches that " Peace" and " Justice " are inextricably intertwined?a much-needed truth for to-day. The times through which the world is now passing are indeed times that try not only men's souls, but nations' souls. The Peace has not ushered in the millennium. Far from it. " Never in the lifetime of the men now living has the universal element in the soul of man burnt so dimly," is the judgment of one who knows the Peace Conference only too well. How can we help the nations to emerge from the bankruptcy?political, economic, spiritual?that is engulfing</page><page sequence="33">THE PEACE BANQUET. 33 so many of them ? The old Rabbis answer : " Great is Justiee, for it alone leadeth to lasting Peace." Now, justice is the pet virtue of the Briton, as it is of the Jew. And the conscience of England can be trusted eventually to right the inequity of the peace-makers, even as it triumphantly fough