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1862 MOSES HESS (1812-75) (Germany)

Wrote "Rome and Jerusalem". After his belief in the panacea of socialism waned, he came to the conclusion that anti-Semitism would not be cured by assimilation. Instead, he held that Jews should build their own nation and society in an independent Eretz Israel.


1627 MENASSEH BEN ISRAEL (Holland)

Published the Hope of Israel (in Latin and Spanish) in which he asserted that the American Indians were the descendants of the Ten Lost Tribes.


1822 MORDECHAI MANUEL NOAH (New York City, USA)

When some protested that it would mean that a Jew can hang a Christian, he was reported to reply "a mighty poor sort of Christian would require hanging."


1830 - 1831 MAZZINI'S YOUNG ITALY

This revolution - in which many Jews took part - was defeated.


1626 MA'AVAR YABOK (Mantua Italy)

Was published by Aaron Berechiah ben Moses of Modena (d.1639), an Italian Kabbalist. Ma'avar Yabok ( the Yabok River Crossing) was written for the Mantua burial society ( chevra kadisha ), and included customs and prayers that are still in use today. He wrote other works including Me'il tzedaḳah (The Cloak of Righteousness) on worship and Ashmoret haBoḳer (The Watches of the Morning) on prayers to be cited in the morning.


948 MACHBERET: THE FIRST HEBREW-LANGUAGE DICTIONARY (Spain)

Was written by Menahem Ben Saruq. He was attacked by Dunash b. Labrat who maintained that some of his definitions were mistaken and his idea that that there were both uniliteral and biliteral roots in Hebrew would lead to wrong interpretations of the biblical text. Since it was composed in Hebrew, his dictionary remained a major reference for European Jews.


1948 March, MAHAL (Eretz Israel)

A volunteer corps was founded to help in the War of Independence. Approximately 5,000 volunteers served in the war: 1,500 from North America, 500 from South Africa, and about 1,000 from Great Britain. Thirty even came from Finland. The major contribution was to the fledgling air force, which was staffed with World War II air force veterans. Around 150 of the volunteers lost their lives.


1948 January 23, MAPAM (Mifleget HaPoalim HaMeuchedet) (Eretz Israel)

The United Workers' Party was formed with the merging of HaShomer HaTzair and Ahdut HaAvodah.


1944 August 5, MEFKURE (Romania - Turkey)

A refugee ship from Romania, arranged by the War Refugee Board was sunk off the Turkish coast by a German warship. The Germans then machine-gunned the survivors, including 100 children. Out of 295 passengers, only five survived. Due to difficulties placed in their path by the Turkish government, the WRB succeeded in only bringing in 2,700 refugees to Turkey between May and August.


1609 MEINEKES RIVKE

The nursemaid of Rebecca written by Rivke Bas Meir Tiktiner (Tykocin)was published. A moralist homiletic work, it was the first Yiddish book written by a woman she died April 13, 1605 and is buried in the old cemetery in Prague.


1870 February 15, MIKVEH ISRAEL (Eretz Israel)

The first Israeli agricultural school was established by Charles Netter, head of the Alliance Israelites Universelle. He was supported by the Anglo-Jewish Association and Baron Edmond de Rothschild. Mikveh Israel later became an important education center for Youth Aliyah.


750 MISHNAT HAMIDDOT

The oldest Hebrew treatise on mathematics, it deals with geometric equations. Some attributed it to the 2nd century Rav Nehemiah, but most scholars believe it originated in the middle of the 8th century, although the author is unknown.


1462 MONTI DI PIETA (Perugia, Italy)

A free loan association, the Funds of Piety was established by Fra Michele da Milano as a replacement for Jewish money lenders. The problem of usury (charging interest) even pertained to such societies and fierce debate raged as to whether they could take even enough interest to cover expenses. Over the next 50 years, over 30 Monti opened in Italy eventually receiving the pope's blessing (1515) and often Jewish money lenders worked side by side with these institutions.


1854 M. DAVIDSON (Germany)

Built and drove the first electric automobile.


1883 MACHZIKEI TALMUD TORAH (USA)

Was established in New York and in Chicago as a religious day school.


1940 July 3, MADAGASCAR PLAN (Berlin, Germany)

Adolph Eichmann prepared a detailed plan for the transfer of four million Jews to Madagascar to be paid for by Jewish confiscated property. The idea was to rid Europe of its Jews and at the same time use them as "hostages" to insure the "correct behavior" of world Jewry. The plan itself dates back to the German anti-Semitic nationalist Paul de Lagarde in 1885. The Germans needed French acquiescence which was predicated on a peace treaty which in turn depended on the end of hostilities with England. On February 1, 1942 the plan was discarded and replaced with the Endloesung, or the "Final Solution". The plan had previously been considered by the Polish government and its foreign minister Josef Beck (see 1937).


1934 May 17, MADISION SQUARE GARDEN (New York City, USA)

Thousands attended a pro-Nazi rally sponsored by the German-American Bund and its leader Fritz Kuhn. The Bund, active from 1934-1941, claimed to be "100% American." Their proclaimed goal was to be for the "constitution, flag and a white gentile ruled, truly free America."


1924 MADISON GRANT (USA)

Published his final edition of The Passing of the Great Race. Predicting that equality would eventually doom the nation, he promoted racist ideology and his hatred for "inferior people".


1632 July 4, MADRID (Spain)

Two years after Miguel Rodregues was discovered holding Jewish rites and accused of destroying a crucifix, a great Auto da Fe was held in the presence of the King, Queen, and foreign ambassadors. Rodregues, his wife Isabel, and five others were burned alive. Their house was razed and a convent called La Paciencia was built on the site.


1680 June 30, MADRID (Spain)

An Auto da Fe was held in honor of the marriage of Carlos II to Louis Marie d'Orleans. It lasted 14 hours and was the last time that a "royal" Auto was held. The king himself set light to the quemadero (burning place). His successor, Philip V, refused the "honor".


1720 April 7, MADRID (Spain)

In one of the last major Auto da Fe's in Spain, twenty families were accused of meeting in a private synagogue. Five Conversos were burned alive. Over the next seven years, there were 868 cases throughout Spain. Of those cases, 75 people accused of Judaizing were taken to the Auto da Fe. (see 1752)


1721 May 18, MADRID (Spain)

The oldest known victim of the Inquisition was burned alive. She was Maria Barbara Carillo and was 96 years old.


1012 MAGDEBURG (Germany)

Jews participated in the funeral of Archbishop Walthad, who was seen as a friend of the Jews.


1183 MAGDEBURG (Germany)

The guild of clothing merchants was granted the privilege of cutting and selling cloth. This was the start of the stranglehold the guilds held over most of the crafts. Jews were, of course, excluded from the guilds. The guilds were exclusive organizations which were created mostly to preserve the rights and privileges of their members.


1261 MAGDEBURG (Germany)

Archbishop Robert seized all Jewish property in Magdeburg, and held influential Jews for ransom by foreign relatives. (This was an inspiration for Eichmann, who offered Jews for trucks.)


1100 MAHZOR VITRY (France)

Was composed by Simha ben Samuel of Vitry, one of Rashi's students. His son Samuel married Rashi's granddaughter and he was the grandfather of the famous Tosafists, Isaac of Dampierre (the RI).The mahzor not only includes the prayers, rituals and customs for both daily and holiday prayers, but also laws of the Sabbath, marriage, etc. It became an important reference work.


1382 March 2, MAILOTIN RIOTS (Paris, France)

These riots were similar to the tax riots held two years previously. Both times the Jews were considered accomplices in over-oppressive taxes. Sixteen Jews fell victim to this outbreak.


1168 MAIMONIDES

Completed Meor, a commentary on the Mishna. It contained the seeds of Maimonides later philosophical works.


1180 MAIMONIDES

Completed his Mishna Torah. a guide in fourteen sections to Jewish traditions and practices, which was based on the entire Talmud (both the Babylonian and Jerusalem versions). It is written in the purest Hebrew and is referred to simply as the Rambam (his acronym). There was much criticism at the time; some for his lack of citing sources, which he believed would have made his work too heavy, and others who thought that it may supplant the study of the Talmud. Abraham Ben David Of Posquiures (see 1125) , while a major critic, also praised him and his work. In his chapter Sefer Mada (Hilchot Daiot) he appears to be the first Jewish source to mention chicken soup for its medical properties.


1233 MAIMONIDES (France)

Works were burned in Paris. Maimonides' opponents, led by Jonah ben Abraham Gerondi and Solomon ben Abraham of Montpellier, joined with the Dominicans. This alliance was soon regretted when the Dominicans turned on them and demanded the burning of all Jewish books, especially the Talmud.


1283 April 19, MAINZ (Seventh day of Passover)(Germany)

Ritual murder accusation (blood libel). Thirty six Jews were slain, known as the Harugei Magenza , the murdered of Mainz.


1941 July 21, - 1944 July 24, MAJDANEK/Maidanek (Lublin, Poland)

Concentration and death camp. It was originally established as a camp for prisoners of war and only became a death camp in the beginning of 1942. It was the largest concentration camp in the General Government and had one of the highest rates of natural deaths. At least 130,000 Jews were murdered in the camp, which was run by Anton Thumann. He was sentenced at the British Neuengamme Trials in March 1946 and executed October 8th 1946.


747 January 18, MAJOR EARTHQUAKE ( Eretz Israel)

Was reported .The focus was the in Judean desert, the rift valley, and Jerusalem. Another one hit the same area two years later with damage to Beit Shean, Tiberius, and Beit alpha.


1435 MAJORCA

Three years after a blood libel the community was forced to either leave or convert. The 200 who were converted became known as chuetas (the word for pork). Legal discrimination against them existed until 1782.


1938 October 24, MALCOLM MACDONALD (Britain)

In a cabinet meeting pressured the British government to abandon the thought of partition fearing that "We should forfeit the friendship of the Arab world." This had a direct influence on the final recommendations of the Woodhead commission.


1260 MAMLUKS (Syria)

Defeated the Mongols at the battle of Ain Jalut and brought Syria under Mamluk rule. Old anti-Jewish regulations were again enforced, including those forcing women to wear one red shoe and one black one. The positions of both Jews and Christians began to suffer, eventually leading to the severe weakening of the Jewish community.


1918 MANDATORY ERETZ YISRAEL

Jewish population reached fifty-six thousand.


1931 MANDATORY GOVERNMENT (Eretz Israel)

Decided that the Western Wall area was part of the Temple Mount and belonged to the Moslem Wakf. Therefore Jews would henceforth not be permitted to blow the Shofar as part of prayers services on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.


1880 - 1961 MANIA (Wilbushewitcz) SHOCHAT (Russia -Israel)

Revolutionary and pioneer. Shochat began her revolutionary activities in Russia and set up a Jewish Workers' Party which had the backing of the czar. After its dissolution in 1903, she joined her brother in Eretz Israel. Mania was instrumental along with her husband, Israel Shochat, in the founding of HaShomer, the Jewish self-defense organization (1909). They settled in Sejera (Ilaniyah), which became the first collective settlement. In her later years she was active as a social worker in helping new immigrants.


1905 October 30, MANIFESTO OF NICHOLAS II (October Manifesto) (RUSSIA)

Czar Nicholas II, after a nation-wide strike, issued a manifesto granting a constitution and a Duma (parliament) in which the Constitutional Democrats (Kadets) and Social Democrats would participate. The Social Democrats included both the Bolsheviks and the Mensheviks. In addition it promised to grant civil liberties including freedom of religion and freedom of speech.Another party the Octobrist's was also created and which supported a constitutional monarchy.As a party, they were often anti-Semitic and wished to ban Jews from the military, and continue enforcing the Pale.


1776 May 31, MANTUA (Italy)

Because Jews were not allowed to expand their housing outside the ghetto, they were forced to build vertically. Many times accidents occurred from weakened structures. On this occasion, two weddings held in the same house caused it to collapse. Twenty-eight women (including one of the brides) and three men were killed.


1735 November 5, MANTUA (Italy)

A pact between the Jewish community and the local high school was mediated by the secretary of state. In return for the Jewish community providing liquor and other gifts to the school on St. Catherine's day, the students did not press their right to throw objects at any Jew who passes the school.


1564 March 22, MANTUA, (Italy)

David Provensalo and his son Abraham asked the Jewish notables to help create a Jewish College. The idea was to allow Jews to learn languages and science and receive a "Jewish education." Although they did establish a talmudic academy, they were opposed by the local Church and did not succeed in opening the College.


1652 December 1, MANUEL FERNANDES VILLAREAL (Portugal)

One of the foremost diplomats and men of letters of his day, he was garroted by the Inquisition. Villareal, who served as the council general in Paris, was a friend of Cardinal Richelieu and an author of some reknown. On a visit to Lisbon he was arrested and accused of practicing Judaism, which he did not deny.


1496 December 5, (23 Tevet 5257) MANUEL OF PORTUGAL

During the first year of his reign he befriended the Jews, but his desire to unite the Iberian Peninsula through marriage to the daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella changed all that. Four years after the expulsion of Jews from Spain, he ordered them expelled from Portugal within 11 months (October 31, 1497). As his real desire was not to see the Jews leave, he only opened one port, which first forced most of them to remain behind after the designated date, and then forced them to be baptized.


872 - 890 MAR ZEMACH I BEN PALTOI (Babylon)

Served as head of the academy at Pumbedita. He arranged the first talmudic dictionary of difficult words, entitled the Aruch.


520 MAR ZUTRA II BEHEADED (Babylon)

Mar Zutra had revolted against the fanatic Kavad I (488-531), establishing a Jewish state in Babylon with Mahoza as its capital which lasted seven years. Eventually his army was overcome and he and his grandfather, Mar Hananiah, were beheaded and crucified on the bridge of Mahoza. Many Jewish leaders were forced to flee and their institutions were closed.


1887 June 7, - 1990 MARC CHAGALL (Vitebsk, Russia-France)

Artist, famous for his folkist fairy-tale cubist paintings of Eastern Europe. He helped establish the Russian Yiddish state theater. Later he went to live in Paris, where he was friendly with Modigliani and Soutine. Chagall designed the stained glass windows of the Hadassah Hospital synagogue in Jerusalem. His works are also displayed at the New York Metropolitan Opera House, the Paris Opera, the United Nations, the Cathedral at Metz, and the Knesset.


1923 MARCEL MARCEAU (France)

Considered one of the greatest mimes of all time. His most famous character was a white faced clown named Bip. During World War II he helped smuggle children to Switzerland.


1871 - 1922 MARCEL PROUST (France)

French writer. His mother was Jewish but he was raised in the Catholic faith. His most famous work was the seven part A la Recherche du Temps Perdu. Proust persuaded Anatole France to defend Dreyfus.


1942 November 2, MARCINKONIS Marcinkance/Marcinkonys (Lithuania)

After a demand that the Jews report for "transfer," Aaron Kobrovsky, head of the Judenrat, realized that there was little hope, and publicly called on all the Jews to fight or flee. Some attacked the Nazis while others broke down the fence and fled. Those who reached the forest, including some of the fourteen Kobrovsky siblings (nephews of Aaron). Moyshe, Leyb and Jacob, and Yitzkhok, set up a small unit and managed to purchase some weapons. They later joined the famous "Davidov Company" of partisans and were known for their daring and courage. Most of them survived the war and live in Israel today.


1723 - 1799 MARCUS ELIEZER BLOCH (Germany)

Physician and zoologist. He was the first modern fish naturalist (ichthyologist). He classified 1500 species in his 12 volume work Allegemeine Naturgeschichte der Fische. His aquarium later became part of the Berlin Zoological Museum.


1853 - 1927 MARCUS SAMUEL BEARSTEAD (England)

Viscount, Lord Mayor of London, and philanthropist. He imported ornamental shells and later founded an oil company which he named "Shell".


1893 - 1965 MARGARETE SOMMER (Germany)

Catholic social worker. During the Holocaust, she helped protect Jews from deportation to death camps and hide them whenever possible. She was also a leader in the Catholic resistance circle of Berlin. In August 1942 she composed a report which was sent to Rome, regarding the deportation of Jews and the conditions in concentration camps. Sommer together with Konrad Preysing, the German prelate of the Roman Catholic Church, made a major effort to get the Catholic Church to speak out and even drafted a statement for the Fulda Conference in 1943. The declaration would have condemned German atrocities, but they were stymied by Cardinal Adolf Bertram who chaired the conference. Yad Vashem recognized Margarete Sommer as Righteous Among the Nations.


1749 MARIA THERESA (Austrian Empire)

Re-admitted the Jews to Prague in return for higher taxes.


1944 May 31, MARIANNE COHN ("COLIN") (France)

A member of the Zionist Youth Movement (MJS), Marrianne was arrested while trying to smuggle Jewish children out of France. Until her arrest, she had succeeded in getting hundreds of children to Switzerland. She was taken with a group of 23 children and although the local mayor succeeded in releasing them, she was incarcerated until the Gestapo took her from the prison on July 3,1944. Her body was found in a mass grave when the town was liberated only a month later.


1942 August 26, MARIE-ROSE GINESTE (Montauban, France)

Traveled well over 100 km by bicycle to hand deliver to other churches, copies of an appeal from Monsignor Pierre-Marie Theas (bishop of Montauban), condemning the deportation of Jews and urging defiance of German orders. Four days later, he proclaimed from his church "all men Aryan or non Aryan are brothers being created by the same God."


1937 January, MARIUS MOUTET (France)

The Colonial Minister, brought up the possibility of resettling French Jews in the many different colonial holdings, including the island of Madagascar (see 1887).


1843 - 1902 MARK ANTOKOLSKI ("Mordechai") (Russia)

A social-sculptor considered by many to be the father of modern Russian sculpture. He first began with Jewish themes. His statue "Ivan the Terrible" (1871) was purchased for the Hermitage Museum by Czar Alexander. Antokolski believed that sculpture was a social and humane ideal. After many anti-Semitic attacks he moved to Paris. He was a traditional Jew who believed that one day there would be a school of Jewish art. This came true with the foundation of the Bezalel Academy by his student Boris Schatz.


1106 MARRAKESH (Morocco)

Ali, the son of Yusuf ibn Tashifin, Almoravide leader and founder of the city, decreed the death penalty for any Jews living in the city. At the same time, one of his military leaders and two of his physicians were Jewish.


1941 August 7, MARSHAL PETAIN (France)

Asked the Vatican for guidance regarding upcoming anti-Jewish actions. French Ambassador Leon Bernard consulted with Pope Pius XII, who quoted Thomas Aquinas: since Jews are destined to perpetual slavery, anti-Jewish measures may be enacted. The Vatican also had no desire to argue with the Vichy government over "the Jewish statute."


1943 July 25, MARSHAL PIETRO BADOGLIO (Italy)

Took over from Mussolini who had been ousted a few days earlier. The Allied invasion of Sicily two weeks earlier began to change Italy's position in the war. Badoglio's short-lived government tried to hamper Nazi efforts to deport Jews to what was known as the "Italian zone" in France.


1878 February 8, - 1965 MARTIN BUBER (Galicia-Eretz Israel)

Considered by many to be the most prominent philosopher of the twentieth century. As a child, he lived with his grandfather and came into contact with Hasidism, which was later reflected in his work. Most of his philosophies revolve around the I-It and I-Thou relationships of people to G-d and objects. Buber was also concerned with the "Historic" soul of the Jew. He fled in 1938 from Germany to Eretz Israel where he served as a professor in the Hebrew University. His numerous books cover many aspects of Judaism, philosophy, and existentialism.


1543 MARTIN LUTHER (1481-1545) (Germany)

Wrote Concerning the Jews and their Lies. As an ally of anti-Catholic Reuchlin, he wrote a pro-Jewish work in 1520 called Jesus was a Jew. Luther expected the Jews to join his revolution, and when they rejected his views he became bitter. He called for the Jews to be slaves to the serfs, so as not to touch the hand of a German Christian. His attacks were generally not based upon the vicious and virulent anti-Jewish writings of past Christians, i.e. Chrysostom.


1658 February 23, MARYLAND (North American Colonies)

Jacob Lumbrozo, a doctor and the first Jew known to have settled in the colony, was arrested under the Toleration Act of 1649 (act concerning religion). This act imposed the death penalty for anyone denying the basic tenants of Christianity. Though Lumbrozo was saved by a general amnesty, proclaimed by Richard Cromwell it was not until the "Jew Bill" passed in 1826 that Jews could hold public office without submitting to a Christian oath.rnrn


73 April, MASADA (Eretz Israel)

Roman General Flavius Silva succeeded in breeching the Judean desert stronghold held by Elazar ben Yair. Of the 960 people who took refuge on Masada, only two women and five children survived. The rest chose suicide rather than slavery.


1938 June 1, MASS ARRESTS (Germany)

Reinhard Heydrich, head of the Gestapo, also known as the Secret Police, ordered the arrest of thousands of German Jews. Most were sent to Buchenwald which soon had to be enlarged. Others were sent to Dachau and Sachsenhausen. In Dachau the prisoners were told to make lots of yellow stars in preparation for a new influx of prisoners.


1412 - 1415 MASS CONVERSIONS IN SPAIN

A combination of the anti infidel laws, Vincent Ferrer's crusade, and the Tortosa debate led to a loss of heart among many Jews. Approximately 50,000 Jews voluntarily " converted. Typical among them was Don Vidal de La Caballeria a noted poet and diplomat. He converted under pressure by the king of Aragon who then rewarded him with a new position.rnrn


1943 March 1, MASS DEMONSTRATION (New York City, USA)

Was organized by Stephen Wise and the World Jewish Congress and co-sponsored by the AFL-CIO. Twenty thousand people inside Madison Square Garden and tens of thousands outside heard messages from Wise, Mayor La Guardia and Chaim Weizmann. Although the rally received good press, Wise was accused of organizing the rally to upstage the one already planned by the Committee for a Jewish Army ("Bergson Group") for March 9th at the same spot.


1936 March 18, MASS PROTESTS (Poland)

By Jews and Polish workers against anti-Semitic violence. Despite the tens of thousands who joined, the effect was insignificant.


1191 March 18, MASSACRE AT BRAY (France)

Eighty Jews were burned for trying to execute a vassal who had killed a Jew. (They had marched him in a procession and tried to hang him - three weeks before Easter).


1389 April 18, MASSACRE AT PRAGUE (Bohemia)

A priest, hit with a few grains of sand or pebbles by small Jewish boys playing in the street, became insulted and insisted that the Jewish community purposely plotted against him. The priests followers beat up the boys whose parents arrived to defend them. A mob was then incited to attack the ghetto. Thousands were slaughtered, the synagogue and the cemetery were destroyed, and homes were pillaged. King Wenceslaus insisted that the responsibility rested with the Jews for venturing outside during Holy Week.


627 April, MASSACRE OF THE BANU QURAYZA ( Yathrib/Medina)

After Mohammed's conquest of the Banu-Nadir Jewish tribe, he attacked the Banu- Qurayza (Eruzia). During what was known as the Battle of the Trench at Yathrib, the Jewish tribe had refused to take up sides. Mohammed enraged, ordered Sa'd bin Muadh a devoted follower and one of the chiefs of the Banu Aus (a former alley of the Qurayza), to decided on their fate. Bin Muadh had been mortally wounded in the battle and advised Mohammed to order their conversion or death. The next morning all males 6-800) who had attained puberty were taken out and beheaded . Only 3 or 4 agreed to convert. The women and children were sold into slavery or taken as concubines, many of which were redeemed by the Banu Nadir. One woman, Rayhana bint Zayd was taken personally by Mohammed. According to most sources she refused to convert and as such remained his slave. Years later (c. 1830) Husayn-`Ali Nuri, later known as Baha'u'llah cites the story of the massacre as one of his reasons for leaving Islam and founding the Bahai religion.rnrn


1391 June 6, MASSACRES AND FORCED CONVERSIONS (Seville, Spain)

Led by Archdeacon Ferrand Martinez ( see march 15, 1391) the campaign soon spread through 70 towns especially in Castile, Aragon, Catalonia, and Valencia. Only Granada was spared. The Jewish quarter in Barcelona, located for over 400 years near the castle, was totally destroyed. Over 10,000 Jews were killed, and thousands more converted.


1943 March 25, MATHAUSEN (Austria)

A Bavarian Catholic priest reported that an estimated 10,000 Dutch Jews had already been murdered in poison gas experiments at the Mathausen concentration camp. The report was confirmed by the Dutch government-in-exile on April 5, and by an American diplomat on June 8. Despite this, no action was taken by the American State Department or the British government.


1663 December 13, MATTATHIAS CALAHORA (Poland)

A renowned physician and scholar, had been accused by Friar Servatius of being the author of an anti Christian pamphlet found in a Dominican church and written in German. The Cracow court condemned him to death. His lips were cut off , his tongue cut out, and then burned alive. His ashes were dispersed to prevent him from having a proper Jewish burial. Despite this, enough of his remains were found for a burial to take place. He did not know any German.


1605 July 26, MATTEO RICCI (Beijing)

An Italian Jesuit missionary, sent a letter to his order describing the existence of the Jewish community in Kaifeng (see 1163). Ricci had met Ai T'ien a Jewish Kaifeng mandarin (b. c. 1545), the previous month in Beijing, when Ai T'ien walked in to the church thinking it was a synagogue. This was the first official report on the Chinese Jewish community to the western world


1875 - 1937 MAURICE RAVEL (France)

Considered the greatest composer since Debussy. He wrote operas, ballets, orchestral and chamber music, and piano pieces. His works include the famous Bolero and Rapsodie Espagnole.


1945 August 27, MAURITIUS DETAINEES (Eretz Israel)

The 1310 surviving Mauritius detainees were allowed into Eretz Israel. Mauritius, a small island in the Indian Ocean, was used by the British to detain Jewish refugees fleeing Europe and trying to enter Eretz Israel. In late December 1940, about 1500 people, including 621 women and 116 children, were forcibly transferred to the island. Twenty-two died from disease along the way. Although many of the men volunteered to join the Allied forces, their families were not recognized as families of British soldiers, by the British government


1938 August 8, MAUTHAUSEN (Austria)

Was established. It was the first Austrian concentration camp and one of the most notorious of all the camps. Run by the SS, it was originally for Austrian anti-Nazis taken under the "protective custody law" of 1936, but it soon contained Spanish Republicans, "enemies of the state" and Jews. Situated near a quarry, its victims were forced to carry heavy loads up over 150 steps. Most of the prisoners (Jews and non-Jews) were classified as "return not desired." A gas chamber was later installed and satellite camps were opened. Franz Ziereis served as its commandant from the beginning until he was captured and shot in May 1945. 122,767 out of an estimated 335,000 prisoners were murdered.


1847 - 1935 MAX LIEBERMAN (Berlin, Germany)

A world-renowned painter, he borrowed many of his concepts from French Impressionists. Although he was Jewish, he did not show any interest in using Judaism as a subject for his paintings.


1934 January 9, MAX NAUMANN ( Germany)

In a speech referring to his own people, the leader of the League of National German Jews Verband national deutscher Juden stated," No one has anything against the good ones …". Naumann and his group supported the eradication of Jewish ethnicity, was anti-Zionist and called for the expulsion of Eastern European Jewry from Germany. In November 18, 1935 his group was declared illegal, and he was arrested by the Gestapo. Naumann died of cancer in May 1939.


1849 July 29, - 1923 MAX NORDAU (Hungary-France)

Author, theater critic, physician and Zionist leader. Nordau had achieved international fame as a writer prior to meeting Herzl at the Neue Freie Presse. The Dreyfus Affair awakened him, as well as Herzl to anti-Semitism. Nordau became Herzl's first convert and together they formulated the goals for the Basel Program. Nordau was a proponent of aggressive political Zionism. His famous "Nordau Plan" called for the settling of five hundred thousand Jews in Eretz Israel as a means of acquiring a Jewish state (1920). Jabotinsky later (1936) adopted Nordau's plan as the basis for his Ten-Year Plan.


1881 - 1961 MAX WEBER (Poland-USA)

A painter, he studied under Rousseau and Matisse. His subjects included landscapes, still lifes, and Jewish scenes.


1880 - 1943 MAX WERTHHEIMER (Germany-USA)

Founder of Gestalt Psychology. Using what he called the Phi phenomenon he believed that the brain "organizes static sensations into an overall apparent movement" (similar to motion pictures). Werthheimer fled Germany in the 1930's and joined the New School for Social Research in New York.


1905 MAXIM GORKY (1868-1936) (Russia)

A Christian author and one of the founders of Soviet literature, he wrote letters of protest against the Black Hundreds in particular and anti-Semitism in general. Leo Tolstoy, one of Russia's greatest writers, joined him in defending the Jews.


1939 April 28, MAXIM LITVINOV (Russia)

The Russian foreign minister was dismissed. Litvinov had been a supporter of the League of Nations, He was a vocal opponent of Germany and, of course, a Jew. His dismissal paved the way for the pact between Germany and Russia and the invasion of Poland.


1863 - 1926 MAXIM VINAVER (Russia)

Jewish leader, lawyer, and spokesman for the Jewish "Block" in the Duma.


1012 MAYENCE (Germany)

Emperor Henry II expelled the Jews, probably in reaction to an anti-Christian pamphlet which was produced by a new convert to Judaism, Wecelin (a former Cleric and Deacon). The Jews were allowed to return the following year.


1064 MAYENCE (Germany)

The archbishop organized a pilgrimage of 7,000 to Jerusalem.


1096 May 27, MAYENCE (Germany)

Count Emicho entered Mayence. Approximately 1200 Jews took refuge in the Episcopal Palace and, seeing no other escape from forced conversion, chose suicide using ritual slaughter knives. Each family head killed his wife and children, with the leaders killing themselves last. The idea of suicide, normally abhorrent, was considered acceptable or even preferable under these circumstances. One Jew by the name of Isaac, his two daughters and a friend called Uriah allowed themselves to be baptized. Within a few weeks Isaac, who was remorseful of his act, killed his daughters and burned his own house. He and Uriah went to the local synagogue, locked themselves in and burned it down. A large part of the city was destroyed.


1114 MAYENCE (Germany)

A new synagogue was dedicated after the old one had been destroyed in the first crusade. King Henry IV, investigating stolen Jewish property, found that much of it was in the hands of the Archbishop Ruthard and his family. The King confiscated the property but kept it for himself (the Crown).


906 MAYENCE (Germany)

First record of a Jewish settlement in the city.


1349 August 24, MAYENCE AND BRESLAU (Germany)

After a mob marched into the Jewish quarter of Mayence carrying a flag with a cross, three hundred young Jews tried to defend themselves. Although as many as 200 of the attackers were killed, they soon overcame the defenders. Rather then be converted, the Jews set their houses on fire. 6,000 Jews died and another 4,000 died in Breslau.


1743 February 23, - 1812 September 19, MAYER AMSCHEL ROTHSCHILD (Frankfurt. Germany)

Founder of the most famous Jewish banking and philanthropic dynasty. The Rothschild house influenced the economic and even political history of Europe for almost 200 years. As a young man, Rothschild met William Landgrave and joined his brokerage business in Hesse-Cassel. He slowly built his own banking business throughout Europe and left it to his five sons. He originally studied for the Rabbinate and remained religious until his death.


1173 MECHISLAV III (POLAND)

After a number of church inspired riots, he ordered that those attacking the Jews be fined, including Christian scholars, and students of the ecclesiastic and monastic colleges. During that time Jews in Poland were farmers even landowners. They also administered the mint. Some of the coins have the names of the ruling princes in Hebrew characters.


1492 October 24, MECKLENBURG (Germany)

Jews were again accused of stabbing a consecrated wafer. Twenty-seven Jews were burned, including two women, and all the Jews were expelled from the duchy. The spot where they were killed is still called the Judenberg.


C. 1170 - 1244 MEIR ABULAFIA (Spain)

Talmudic commentator, Rabbinical leader and poet. He played an important role in organizing the communities in Spain, especially that of Toledo. Abulafia wrote a commentary on half the Talmud originally known as Sefer Preatei Peratim ( "The book of minute details" ) some of which are known today as Yad Ramah. His Masoret Seyag laTorah deals with the traditional texts of the Torah. Abulafia is also known for his letters to Rabbi Jonathan ( of Lunel) where he took issue with Maimonides over the principle of resurrection.


1410 MEIR ALGUADES (Spain)

The chief rabbi and former physician to King Henry III (Castile) was accused by Paul de Santa Maria ( see 1398) of desecrating the host. He was tortured until he "confessed". Then he was killed and the synagogue was converted into a church.


1558 - 1616 (6 Iyar 5376) MEIR BEN GEDALIAH (Maharam of Lublin) (Poland)

Educator, talmudic scholar, and director of the Yeshivot of Cracow, Lvov and Lublin. Many of his pupils became well-known in their own right. His casuistic commentary (Meir Enai Chachamim) is considered one of the important commentaries on the Talmud. After his death, over 140 of the halachic questions posed to him were published under the name Manhir Einai Chachamim.


1060 - 1135 MEIR BEN SAMUEL (Ramerupt, France)

Rabbi and scholar. Meir was a son-in-law of Rashi and was one of the first Tosafists. Of his sons three are famous: Samuel b. Meir (Rashbam), Isaac b. Meir, and Jacob b. Meir Tam. In addition to his commentary on the Talmud, he edited the Kol Nidrei text into the prayer we recite today.


C. 1670 - 1744 MEIR EISENSTADT ( MaHaRaM ESH) (Poland)

Rabbi and talmudic scholar. He served as the Rosh Yeshiva in both Worms and Eisenstadt. Among his students was Jonathan Eybeshutz, who he raised after his father had died. His works include Panim Me'irot, and Or ha-Ganuz both on the Talmud, and Me'orei Esh, on the Pentateuch.


1809 - 1879 (1 Tishrei 5640) MEIR LEIBUSH MALBIM (Chief Rabbi of Bucharest) (Romania)

Rabbi and commentator. His commentary on the Bible, showing the close relationship between the Oral and the Written Law, is widely used today. He also authored Hatorah V'Hamitzva, Ayelet Hashachar and other works. Malbim fought vociferously against the Reform movement, which had been making strong inroads in German Jewry, to the extent that he was briefly imprisoned. In Vilna, Moghilof, and Koenigsberg he was declared persona non grata by the local people.


1887 - 1934 (7 Cheshvan 5695) MEIR SHAPIRO (Poland)

Rabbi, communal leader, educator and founder of Chachmei (Hakhmei) Lublin Yeshiva, the first with modern facilities. Shapiro was elected to the Polish Sejm in 1923 and served as one of the most forceful defenders of Polish Jewry for two years. He was the innovator of Daf Yomi, the learning of a page of Talmud a day, as a means for encouraging adult education. This method enables one to complete the Talmud in 7.5 years. Though he died at a young age, he left a heritage which remains a unifying factor throughout Orthodox Jewry today.


1608 - 1644 MEIR SHIF (Maharam Shif)(Frankfurt, Germany)

Scholar and commentator. He is remembered as one of the greatest German talmudic scholars of his time. After his death, many annotations known as the Maharam Shif were written as a talmudic commentary.


1850 September 7, (1 Tishrei 5611 Rosh Hashana) MELEE AT SYNAGOGUE (Albany New York)

While Isaac Mayer Wise was serving as Rabbi of the Beth El Synagogue in Albany New York, he asserted in an address to a reform congregation that he did not believe in the coming of the Messiah nor the resurrection of the dead. Members of the Albany synagogue demanded that he be fired, he refused and forcefully ascended the pulpit. A fistfight broke out which included Wise and the synagogue president. The police had to intervene and close the synagogue. Wise decided to moved to Cincinnati where he founded Congregation Bnai Jeshurum and the first Reform seminary.


C. 170 MELITO, BISHOP OF SARDIS (Asia Minor)

Published a sermon "On the Passion" in which he blamed the Jews for the persecution and death of Jesus and absolved Pontius Pilate and the Romans from any guilt. Although there was much evidence to the contrary his stand served to rid the Romans of any responsibility or shame and thus encourage them to convert. This is one of the first times the Jews were officially accused of deicide.


1943 December, MENACHEM BEGIN (Eretz Israel)

Became commander of the Irgun Zvai Leumi. Begin's first decisions were that the Irgun should maintain an independent policy separate from the Revisionist movement. and begin to plan a revolt against British rule.


1913 August 16, - 1991 MENACHEM BEGIN (Russia-Eretz Israel)

Commander of the Irgun Zvai Leumi, (National Military Organization) statesman and prime minister. He emerged as one of the leaders of the Revisionist Movement between the wars and commanded Betar (Brit Trumpeldor). In 1939 he escaped from Vilna and was arrested by the Russians and sentenced to eight years in a labor camp. He was released in 1941 and made his way to Israel where he became commander of the underground resistance group, Etzel. He led the opposition Herut Party until 1977, when he became prime minister. In 1978 he signed a treaty with Egypt (the largest Arab country) which returned the Sinai to Egypt in return for peace. Begin also wrote two books, White Nights, about imprisonment in Russia, and The Revolt, the story of the Irgun.


1902 - 1994 (3 Tamuz 5754) MENACHEM MENDEL SCHNEERSOHN (Russia-USA)

Rabbi and Hasidic leader of the Habad - Lubavitch movement. Although he was not a direct descendent, he was chosen by Rabbi Jacob Joseph Schneersohn, his father-in-law, as his designated successor. After leaving Russia, Schneersohn pursued a degree at the Sorbonne in philosophy and electrical engineering. He arrived in the USA in 1941 and worked for a few years as an electrical engineer for the U.S. Navy. After the war Schneersohn headed the Merkos L'Inyonei Chinuch - the educational arm of the Habad movement. With his father-in-law's death in 1950 he was officially appointed as his successor. Under the direction of "the Rebbe" (as he was popularly known), Habad became a world-wide movement that sent its emissaries to remote corners of the world. Having no heirs, Habad was left without a spiritual leader after his passing.


1863 - 1941 MENACHEM MENDEL USSISHKIN (Russia-Eretz Israel)

Zionist leader. He served as Hebrew Secretary at the First Zionist Congress and bitterly opposed the Uganda plan. His views were expressed in a pamphlet, "Our Program", which advocated group settlement based on labour. Ussishkin was President of the Jewsh National Fund for eighteen years, and he was the force behind large land acquisitions in Emek Hefer and in the Jezreel and Bet Shean valleys. He was one of the few Zionist leaders to actually settle in Israel.


1882 - 1943 (19 Nissan 5703) MENACHEM ZEMBA (Poland)

One of the prewar religious intellectual giants. A Gur Hassid, he published twenty manuscripts. Many others, including a 1,000 page commentary on the Jerusalem Talmud, were lost during the war. Locked in the Warsaw Ghetto, he inspired people to fight back, quoting halachic (lawful) demands to resist the Germans "with unequalled determination and valor for the sake of the sanctification of God".


C. 910 - C. 970 MENAHEM BEN JACOB SARUQ(Saruk) (Spain)

Lexicographer, philologist and poet. His lexicon of the bible (Machberet) became the first Hebrew-language dictionary. His work was vociferously criticized by Dunash ben Labrat. Saruq was so vilified that he lost the patronage of Hasdai ibn Shaprut, for whom he had written the letter to the Khazars. He was defended by his students including Judah ibn David Hayyug, who later correctly defined the Hebrew triliteral (three letter) root system. The biblical commentator Rashi refers to him as a philological authority and often quotes him.rnrn


1791 MENAHEM MENDEL LEFIN (LEVIN) (1749-1826) (Poland)

An early leader of the Haskalah Movement. He published a pamphlet in French promoting the reform of Polish Jewry. Lefin often wrote in Hebrew and even Yiddish. He believed that education was the best way of encouraging emancipation. Though strongly opposed to Hasidism, he nonetheless believed that Jewish tradition was vital for the preservation of Judaism.


1890 February 22, MENAHEM USSISHKIN (Russia-Eretz Israel)

One of the founders of the Odessa Committee. The Committee was dedicated to the practical exponent of the Hovevei Zion in establishing agricultural settlements in Eretz Israel. Ussishkin later served as president of the Jewish National Fund. He was one of the few Zionist leaders who actually settled in Eretz Israel.


1604 - 1657 (20 Kislev 5418) MENASSEH BEN ISRAEL (Holland)

A Converso by birth, he became an outstanding man of letters. He was mystically inclined and believed that Jews must dwell in every country before the Messiah could come. This was the basis on which he approached the religiously-minded Cromwell with a petition for the resettlement of Jews in England. He was assisted by Antonio Carvajal, the first "denizenized" (foreigner granted residence and some other rights) Jew in England under Charles I. Although Menasseh was later offered a job in Brazil, he remained in Amsterdam. Cromwell eventually had his way, despite the fact that England and the Dutch states were at odds, and in spite of the opposition of English clergy and merchants.


1650 MENASSEH BEN ISRAEL (Holland)

Dedicated the Latin edition of his book The Hope of Israel to the English Parliament. Menasseh asserted in his book that the American Indians were the descendants of the Ten Lost Tribes.


1913 October 28, MENDEL BEILIS

After two years in prison Beilis was acquitted of all charges.


1827 - 1900 MENDEL DINESS (Mendenhall) (Odessa- Jerusalem Washington)

The first Jewish photographer of Jerusalem. Diness had been sent by his father to study in Jerusalem after he began to show interest in the haskalah movement. He became a watchmaker but soon fell under the influence of a local Christian missionary and converted. He was introduced to James Graham a photographer who taught him the trade and with whom he made many photographs. Diness moved to the USA where he changed his name to Mendenhall where his plates lay in obscurity until 1989.


1945 April 30, MENDEL GROSSMAN

Photographer of the Lodz ghetto, was shot during a death march still holding his camera. Grossman had recorded events in the ghetto between 1939 and 1944, taking as many as 10,000 pictures. He took hundreds of pictures of those who were murdered, helping families identify their loved ones. His negatives were hidden and later taken to Israel. Some of his pictures were publish in the book, With a Camera in the Ghetto .


1835 - 1917 MENDELE MOCHER SFORIM (Shalom Jacob Abramowitz) (Russia)

Distinguished author and Haskalist (advocate of the Enlightenment Movement). His work focused on the life and problems of the Jewish masses in Russia. Although an unabashed champion of the simple Jew, he strongly criticized jewish life in the small towns and ghetto. At the same time he had no patience for what he saw as the trend in the Haskala for assimilation. Though he wrote in both Hebrew and Yiddish, he was renowned as the forerunner of populist Yiddish literature.


1269 - 1465 MERINDES DYNASTY (Morocco)

Began when Abu Yusuf the Merinid conquered southern Morocco. The Merindes were a Berber dynasty which replaced the Almohads. In general, the Jews were well treated and enjoyed freedom and affluence during their rule.


1475 July 3, MESHULLAM CUSI (Italy)

Established the first Hebrew press in Italy at Piove di Sacco near Padua and printed Jacob b. Asher's Arbah Turim. The same year he also printed a Slichot (prayers for the Days of Repentance).


1096 MESSIANIC HOPE

According to some Jewish commentaries, the Messiah was supposed to arrive in the Hebrew year 4856 - 1095-6. This was derived from Jeremiah 31:6, "Ronu...(sing)...at the head of the nation". "Ronu" in gematria equals 256, i.e. 256 lunar cycles (19 years each). Thus hopes were raised and then cruelly dashed with little done to prevent the oncoming disaster.


1942 August 22, METROPOLITAN (Archbishop) ANDREY SHEPTYTSKY (Ukraine)

Wrote Pope Pius XII describing the atrocities of the Nazis. Although Sheptytsky initially welcomed the Germans, he had done so because of his belief in Ukrainian independence. Once he witnessed the scope of the persecutions, he wrote to Himmler himself. The Pope's reply urged him to show patience.


1920 January 4, METULLA (Eretz Israel)

Bedouin attacks on the north forced the French at a fort near Metulla to retreat. The 120 members of the settlement were forced to flee to Sidon, where they boarded a ship to Haifa.


1670 January 18, METZ (France)

Raphael Levy, a peddler, was accused of killing a Christian child for sorcery and was tortured to death. A former Jew, Paul du Vallie, son of a renowned physician, leader in the Jewish community, helped to convict him. King Louis XIV later declared it to be "judicial murder" and demanded that all such cases be brought before the king's council.


888 METZ (France)

A church council forbade Christians and Jews to eat together. Although Jews may have been there since the fourth century, this was the first documented evidence of a Jewish presence in the city.


1523 MEXICO

Only allowed immigration to those who could prove four generations of Catholic ancestry. In spite of this, many Conversos succeed in purchasing "Purity of Blood" (limpieza de sangre) certificates.


1528 MEXICO

The first Auto da Fe took place in the New World. One of its first victims was Hernando Alonso. One of Cortes' conquistadors, he was burned at the stake with another "Judaizer". An official Office of the Inquisition would only be set up in 1571.


1571 October 18, MEXICO

An Inquisition was set up that remained in force until the end of the eighteenth century. During that period, 1,500 persons were convicted of being judaizantes (someone who practices Judaism). Aproximately 200 were either burned at the stake or died before being convicted. A similar number were sentenced to jail terms.


1574 February 28, MEXICO

The first official Auto da Fe in the New World was held after the establishment of the Inquisition 5 years earlier. The first unofficial Auto da Fe was actually held in 1528 when the conquistador, Hernando Alonso, was executed.


1596 December 8, MEXICO

Luis de Carvajal el Mozo, his mother, and three sisters were burned at the stake together with five other Crypto-Jews (Conversos) who were also accused of Judaizing. Manuel Diaz who predicated the coming of the Messiah in 1600 was taken to the market place in San Ipolito, where he was garroted and burned.


1649 April 11, MEXICO

The largest Auto da Fe in the New World was held with 109 victims. All but one of them were accused of Judaizing. It was the largest number of Jews ever convicted in the New World. Thirteen were burned alive and 57 in effigy. Of the thirteen, twelve "repented" and so were garroted before being burned. Tomas Trevino, whose mother and wife had also been killed by the Inquisition, refused. For the most part this ended the prominence of crypto-Jews in Mexico.


1864 - 1867 MEXICO

Backed by French troops Emperor Maximilian, the archduke of Austria, ruled as emperor of Mexico. Many Jews from France, Belgium, and Austria arrived in his wake, helping to establish the modern Jewish community in Mexico. After his execution by republican forces under Benito Juarez, the situation for the Jews in Mexico did not change for the worse.


1924 August 8, MEXICO

President Plutarco Elias Calles declared that his country would accept Jewish immigration. By 1937, Mexico reversed itself and many countries, including Poland and Romania, were allowed only 100 immigrant visas per year.


1914 MEYER LONDON (USA)

A Socialist and Russian Jewish immigrant, was elected to the Congress from the 12th district in New York.


1869 October 20, MICHAEL BAKUNIN (1814-1876) (Russia)

In the article published in Le Reveil du Peuple, he attacked the Jews as being a "Nation of Exploiters". Bakunin was a revolutionist anti-Semite and one of the founders of anarchism. In his many articles, he emphasized that Jews controlled most of the commerce and banking in Europe and were the enemies of the proletariat. He viewed Rothschild and Marx as being two sides to the same coin.


1669 June 19, MICHAEL I ELECTED KING OF POLAND

June 19 1669 MICHAEL I ELECTED KING OF POLAND By the nobility and perceived as malleable to their wishes. Michael I (1640-1673) tried to restore protections and previous agreements to the Jews. He was opposed by the Diet, which was controlled by the clergy and the lesser nobles, and who wanted more restrictions ;" in order that the perfidy and self-will of the Jews should not gain the upper hand". His reign lasted a little more than four years when he died suddenly of food poisoning.


820 - 829 MICHAEL II (Byzantine Empire)

Emperor Michael II came from Phrygia (west central part of Anatolia) . He adopted a liberal and sympathetic policy toward the Jews including lowering taxes. Michael wasaccused of being half Jewish but was probably influenced by a Judeo-Christian sect (the Athinganoi) which was very active in his area. They practiced many Christian traditions yet kept the Sabbath and other Jewish laws, though not circumcision.


1098 MIGRATION TO POLAND

After the Crusader attacks on Prague and its environs, Bohemian Jews escape into Poland which had not been ravaged by the crusaders. Duke Bretislav II of Bohemia used the opportunity to steal whatever he could from those fleeing. Bohemian Jews were soon joined by Jews from the Rhine.


1943 October 21, MILA RACINE (France)

A member of the Zionist Youth Movement (MJS) was arrested along with Roland Epstein while trying to lead a group of children and old people to Switzerland. Both were deported and Mila died in Ravensbruck during a bombing raid.


1943 December 6, MILAN JEWS DEPORTED (Italy)

In one of the last major Italian deportations, 212 Jews from Milan were sent to Auschwitz. In all, out of a population of 35,000 before the war, approximately 8500 Jews were killed. An estimated 2000 Jews fought with the partisans, five of them winning Italy's highest medals for bravery.


1817 May 24, MINISTRY OF RELIGIOUS AFFAIRS (Russia)

Was set up by Alexander I. He appointed Prince Alexander Golitsyn, of the Russian Bible Society as its head. Golotsyn in turn created the Israelitish-Christian Society, offering financial incentives, free land ,as well as other privileges to those Jews who would convert.


418 MINORCA (Balearic Islands off Spain's eastern coast)

Severus, the bishop of Minorca, claimed to have forced 540 Jews to accept Christianity upon conquering the Island. This is the first we know of Jews on this Island as well as the first case of Jews being forced to convert or face expulsion. Although in general forced conversions (as laid down by Pope Gregory I) were officially frowned upon, they were considered valid - and backsliding was usually considered heresy. Harsher "no choice" forced conversions began in the 9th century.


1941 July 21, MINSK

Forty five Jews bound together were ordered to be buried alive by 30 Russian army prisoners. The Russians refused and all 75 (Jews and Russians)were shot.


1679 MINSK (Lithuania)

King John III Sobieski confirmed the right of the Jews to own real estate and engage in all trades and commerce, despite the opposition of the local population. These rights were confirmed again in 1722 and led to a relatively peaceful situation for the Jews in the city during those two centuries.


1942 July 31, MINSK GHETTO

Moshe Jaffe the leader of the Judenrat refused to hand over list s of Jews to the Germans They forced him together all the Jews in the town square, but when he saw the entrance of gas trucks he called out. "Jews the bloody murderers have deceived you – flee for your lives!” He was shot together with the ghetto police chief. His predecessor Eliyahu Myshkin had also refused to cooperate with the Germans and had been hanged.


1942 March 2, MINSK ROUNDUP (Belarus)

The Nazis demanded that the Judenrat, hand over 5000 people for deportation. When the Judenrat refused to comply, they dug a pit in a ravine in the center of the ghetto and buried alive anyone they found including the entire Shpalerna Street orphanage run by Dr. Chernis.


1942 August 9, MIR REVOLT (Belarus)

Only 850 Jews were left in the town after the Nazis killed 1500 on November 9, 1941. They were transferred to the old Mirski fortress where many began to plan a revolt. Informed of an impending Aktion, two hundred young people decided to escape and join the partisans rather than try to fight the Germans in the town. Over 15,000 Jews fought under the Russians partisans alone. A few days later, on August 13, all those who were left were murdered.


1817 MIR (Poland)

Rabbi Samuel Tiktinski (c. 1883) founded a Torah college (yeshiva) which eventually served five hundred students and was renowned throughout the Jewish world.


1360 MIRANDA DEL EBRO (Castile, Spain)

Furious after a massacre of the Jews, Pedro I roasted one of the perpetrators alive, boiled another and executed eight others with an axe.


1911 - 1943 MIRE GOLA (Galicia, Poland)

Underground fighter and member of the communist Polish Workers Party (P.P.R). Gola who had traveled widely, urged all of her comrades to take up armed struggle, stating that time was against them. She participated in many attacks against German targets. In March 1943 she was captured and although tortured, refused to give away any information. On the way to be executed she tried to escape, but was shot and killed.


C. 1600 MIRIAM BAT BENAYAH (Yemen)

One of the very few woman scribes. Miriam's father Benayah ben Sa'adiah and her brothers were scribes and copyists (before printing reached Yemen). The family copied over 400 books. She wrote a sefer torah (Torah scroll ) to which she appended a note : Do not condemn me for any errors that you may find, as I am a nursing woman.


C. 1403 - 1450 MIRIAM LURIA (SPIRA) (Germany)

Teacher and Talmudic scholar. She was the daughter of Solomon Spira (c. 1375c. 1453) Known as Rabbanit Miriam she taught at a yeshiva in Italy, and gave public lectures on Halachah. It is said that " because of her beauty", she would teach Talmud to some of the most qualified young men from behind a curtain, so that they would not be distracted. Miriam Luria was the grandmother of Solomon Luria ( Maharshal 1510-1573).


1841 - 1920 MIRIAM MARKEL -MOSESSOHN (Russia)

Hebrew author and translator. She translated Herzl's Die linke Glocke (" The left Bell") from the German as well novels and a book on Jewish history Die Juden und die Kreuzfahrer by Isaac Asher Francolm published as Ha-Yehudim be-Anglia.. She was in correspondence with and respected by, many of the leaders of the Maskilim " enlightenment" movement. Y. L Gordon (18311892) dedicated his famous satire " Kotso shel Yod (The Tip of the Yod -1876) to her.


1860 November 3, MISHKENOT SHA'ANANIM (Jerusalem, Eretz Israel)

The first neighborhood outside the Old City's walls was dedicated. The site was purchased by Sir Moses Montefiore, five years earlier, with $60,000 from the estate of Judah Touro which was left for Montefiore to use at his discretion. Although there was initial resistance to leaving the "security" of the Old City's walls, it soon led to the establishment of dozens of new neighborhoods.


1946 July, MISKOLC POGROM (Hungary)

Five Jews were killed and many injured. This, following a pogrom at Kunmadaras, convinced many Hungarian survivors that they should emigrate.


1841 April 24, MISSIONARY ACTIVITY

A severe ban against anyone attending a school supported by missionaries, or using a physician in a missionary supported hospital was issued by the Chief Rabbi of Constantinople. This was a reaction to increased missionary activity and actual conversions in the wake of the 1840 disappointment regarding the date of the coming of the messiah. Further bans were issued in Jerusalem and other parts of the Ottoman Empire and even Galicia. Prior to this, there had been some cooperation on practical issues between the Perushim leaders and some missionaries in Jerusalem.


1902 March 5, MIZRACHI MOVEMENT (Vilna,Lithuania)

Was set up by Rabbi Isaac Jacob Reines as a religious Zionist organization based on the Basel Program and commitment to the Torah. Mizrachi (the acronym of Merkaz Ruchani (Spiritual Center)) is both an ideological and an educational movement. Its slogan "Eretz Israel for the people of Israel according to the Torah of Israel" expressed the idea that the Torah is the spiritual heart of Zionism. There were bitter debates regarding the inclusion of cultural activities in addition to practical political Zionism. Within a year over 200 branches were established in Russia, and within two years the Mizrachi World Organization was established. The Mizrachi workers movement "Hapo'el Hamizrachi" tried to organize and unify the early religious pioneers. Mizrachi has a youth movement - Bnei Akiva - and two women's organizations - Emunah and AMIT.


1625 MOHAMED IBN FAROUK (Eretz Israel)

A tyrant from Nablus who purchased the office of the Governor of Jerusalem and then imprisoned Jewish leaders in lieu of 12,500 gold florins.


622 MOHAMMED (Arabia)

Fled Mecca. (This journey is known to Moslems as the Hejira.)


632 MOHAMMED DIED

Rival Muslim sects were formed after his death


640 MOHAMMEDAN ARABS TOOK OVER EGYPT

Jews who had previously lived there gradually returned.


1532 MOLCHO AND REUVENI

Were arrested by Charles V. Molcho was accused of being a Church renegade and burned at the stake in the first Auto da Fe held in Evora, Portugal on November 7 of that same year. Reuveni was sent to Spain where he was also probably burned at the stake, probably at Badajoz Spain in 1538.


1898 - 1992 MOLLY PICON (USA)

Actress and comedienne. She originally gained fame in the Yiddish theater, but made a successful transition to English. Picon stared in films, plays and on the radio. One her most famous Yiddish roles was in Yiddle Mit a Fiddle in 1936.


1220 - 1258 MONGOL CONQUEST OF PERSIA

The Mongols attacked Persia (beginning under Genghis Khan, who died in 1227), and captured Baghdad in 1258. The Jews and other religious minorities were tolerated.


438 - 527 MONOPHYSITE DISAGREEMENT (Eretz Israel)

The Churchs preoccupation with clashes over the divinity of Jesus throughout the Byzantine empire, brought about a temporary halt to anti Jewish persecution in Eretz Israel. This relatively peaceful era in addition to the general economic prosperity in the region, led to the restoration of many synagogues in both the north and south.


1944 June 25, MONSIGNOR ANGELO ROTTA (Hungary)

The papal nuncio (ambassador) in Budapest, at his own initiative, delivered a letter of protest from the pope over the deportation of Hungarian Jews. This letter, combined with a warning from Secretary of State Cordell Hull regarding reprisal for the Hungarian actions, forced Regent Horthy to stop the deportations.


1942 August 23, MONSIGNOR JULES-GERARD SALIEGE ( France)

Archbishop of Toulouse, issued a public letter of protest upon receiving information regarding the first deportation of Jews to the Dracy transit camp . All the priests in his diocese read out his letter from their pulpits. They included Bishop Theas of Montauban, Bishop Delay of Marseilles, Cardinal Gerlier of Lyon, Bishop Vanstenbergher of Bayonne, and Archbishop Moussaron of Albi. In November of the previous year he also objected to the treatment of Jews under the Vichy government. rnrn


1190 MONTPELLIER JEWS (France)

Were prohibited from holding any "high" office in France.


1769 MORDECAI MOSES MORDECAI (USA)

Became the first Jew to farm in Lancaster Pennsylvania, in what was known then as the West.


1535 - 1612 (3 Adar II 5372) MORDECAI BEN ABRAHAM JAFFE (Prague, Bohemia)

Rabbi, halachist and Jewish leader. Jaffe, a student of Moses Isserles and Solomon Luria, was one of the important codifiers of Jewish Law. He also studied philosophy and astronomy. His work Levushim (Garments), taken from the scroll of Esther 8:15, included opinions as well as the decisions of Beit Joseph. He wrote it from concern that Caro's Shulchan Aruch was too abbreviated. Jaffe was instrumental in setting up the Council of the Four Lands and was the successor of Judah Lowe (The Maharal) to the chief court (Av Bet Din) of Prague.


1817 - 1889 MORDECAI ELIASBERG (Lithuania-Latvia)

Rabbi and leader in the Hovevei Zion movement. He took a unusual position regarding the Haskalah supporting their drive for equal rights and vocational training, as long as it did not weaken religion. He wrote 24 works including his responsa Terumat Yad (Donation of a Hand) and Shvil ha-Zahav (The Golden Path), which discussed the importance of settling the land of Israel In the controversial discussion in 1889 regarding the sabbatical year, he proposed that agricultural work continue.


1942 June 6, MORDECAI GEBIRTIG (1877-1942) (Cracow, Poland)

The famous Yiddish and songwriter was shot and his wife and daughters were sent to a death camp. Gebertig's Undzer Shtetl Brent ("Our Town is Burning") was written in 1938 after a pogrom and won instant fame. Other famous compositions were Sug nit Keinmol (Never Say Never) and Mayn Cholem (My Dream).


1858 - 1925 MORDECAI SPECTOR (Russia-America)

Yiddish satirist and contributor to Sholem Aleichem's "Folksblatt". After moving to America he became a frequent contributor to the American Yiddish press.


1942 November, MORDECAI TENENBAUM-TAMAROFF (Poland)

Was sent to Bialystok by the Jewish Fighting Organization in Warsaw to help organize and unite the movement which was fractured by political and ideological splits - especially between the communists. Tenenbaum, a leader in the HaShomer HaTzair movement, succeeded in uniting most of the movements and convinced them that they should defend the ghetto rather than join the partisans. There had been major differences (as in most ghettos) between the groups as to whether it was better to fight within the ghetto or to join the partisans, Tennenbaum favored the former, only leaving for the forests when there was no choice.


1919 - 1943 May 8, MORDECHAI ANIELEWICZ (Poland)

Commander of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. In 1941, with the beginning of the "Final Solution", he called for the establishment of an armed Jewish underground. He tried unsuccessfully to unite all the various factions in the anti-Fascist block, but was more successful in building the Jewish Fighting Organization in Warsaw. Anielewicz published a newsletter (Against the Stream) and even started an urban kibbutz. On May 8, 1943, during the final revolt and after almost 3 weeks of fighting, he was killed in the main bunker at 18 Mila street.


1943 May 8, MORDECHAI ANIELEWICZ (Poland)

Commander of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising was killed in the main bunker at Mila 18. The Germans blocked up the exits and began to propel gas into the bunker which contained over 100 fighters. Many of them killed themselves. Anielewicz had united the various factions, published a newsletter Neged Hazerem (Against the Stream) and started an urban kibbutz in Warsaw. Kibbutz Yad Mordechai is named after him.


1893 - 1940 MORDECHAI FRIZIS (Greece)

Greek war hero. Mounted on his horse he led his troops against an Italian attack. Though seriously wounded he continued to encourage his troops from on top his horse until he died . With the rank of colonel, he was the first high ranking Greek officer to be killed in World War II.


1785 - 1851 July 19, MORDECHAI MANUEL NOAH (Philadelphia, USA)

Author, journalist, and diplomat, he became the United State's consul to Tunis. Noah dwelled upon the problem of a haven for Jewish refugees. He wrote about the importance of a revived Jewish homeland. In 1825, he decided to acquire Grand Island as a Jewish city of refuge. The plan and the city faded. After he failed to keep his position in the elections for Sheriff of New York, he was appointed Grand Sachem of Tammany Hall by Martin Van Buren. In 1837 he came to the conclusion that the best solution was for the Jews to have their own homeland in Eretz Israel.


1528 - 1601 MORDECHAI MEISEL (Prague, Bohemia)

One of the first great Court Jews. He was extremely wealthy and a generous philanthropist.


1942 September 12, MORDECHAI TENENBAUM - TAMAROFF (Poland)

A member of the Dror youth movement and the Jewish Fighting Organization was asked to organize the underground in the Bialystok ghetto. He also was active in organizing the Warsaw ghetto uprising and served as a contact with Anton Schmid, the Austrian soldier who helped Jews. Tenenbaum probably committed suicide after the failed uprising.


1844 - 1914 MORDEKHAI DISKIN (Russia-Eretz Israel)

Pioneer and educator. Diskin worked as both a coachman and a teacher of Jewish Studies. He opened his house in Jaffa for free to new settlers who needed medical treatment. Diskin helped found the first modern religious school in the country: Nezah Israel in Petah Tikvah. He wrote a number of monographs which describe the difficulties of the early settlers.


1881 - 1965 MORITZ (DON MAURICIO) HOCHSCHILD (Germany- Bolivia- USA )

Mining magnate. Though criticized by the Bolivian government as a ruthless industrialist, it only recently became known that during the late 1930's, he also used his position and wealth to bring over 9000 Jews to Bolivia . Hochschild provided housing for many, and set up a Jewish school for them in La Paz .


1816 - 1907 MORITZ STEINSCHNEIDER (Hungary)

Teacher and scholar known as the "Father of modern Jewish bibliography". A prodigious author in his own right, he showed how classical Greek knowledge was transmitted through Hebrew and Arabic to Western Europe. He cataloged all the Jewish writers in Arabic, along with their bibliographies and biographies. As a teacher, he counted among his students Judah Magnes, Ignaz Goldziher, Solomon Schechter and Hayyim Brody.


1578 August 4, MOROCCAN PURIM (Purim de Los Christianos)

Jews faced near disaster when the opposition led by King Sebastian of Portugal nearly succeeded in conquering the country. The date of the Portuguese defeat at al-Qasr al-Kabir became a day of celebration and thanksgiving for the Jewish community of Morocco.


1107 MOROCCO

Yoseph ibn Tashifin, the Almoravide ruler, ordered all Jews to convert or leave Morocco. He based this on limiting Mohammed's "tolerance" of the Jews to 500 years after the Hejira.


1783 MOROCCO

The Sultan expelled the Jews after they failed to pay an exorbitant ransom. This was the third time they were expelled within a number of years.


1808 MOROCCO

Jews were ordered into ghettos (mellahs) by the ruler of Morocco, Mulay Suleiman (1792-1822). This affected the cities of Tetuan, Rabat, Sale, and Mogador.


1864 - 1888 MOROCCO

During this period, 307 Jews were murdered by Moslems without one Moslem being put on trial for this crime.


1902 - 1972 MORRIS "MOE" BERG (USA)

Baseball player and spy. Berg, a major league catcher for several years, had a degree from both Princeton and the Columbia Law School. Before World War II he was asked by the U.S. government to take on a number of spy missions in Europe. He spoke 12 languages and served in the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the precursor to the CIA.


1887 - 1970 MORRIS COHEN ("Two Gun Cohen") (Canada)

General, marksman, and gunrunner to the Chinese army. He served in World War I and later, due to his personal friendship with the local Chinese community in Canada, as Sun Yat Sen's personal bodyguard, saving his life a number of times. Chaing Kai-Shek appointed him a general in the Kuomintang Army. He trained the Chinese army against Japan. Cohen was captured by the Japanese and tortured. He was only released after the end of the war. He was one of the few people who tried to reconcile the two Chinese factions (nationalist and communist) and was always welcomed by both governments.


1862 - 1923 MORRIS ROSENFELD ("Poet of Labor") (USA)

Wrote about life in the sweatshops of New York. He dealt with humanitarianism rather than Socialism. His Lider Buch (Songs from the Ghetto) won wide acclaim.


1946 July 24, MORRISON - GRADY PLAN

Herbert Morrison, deputy prime minister of Britain, and Ambassador Henry Grady of the United States put forth a proposal to divide Palestine into three sectors, Jewish, Arab, and British. The British would retain control for another four years, and its sector would include Jerusalem and the Negev. The proposal was rejected by both sides.


1858 June 23, MORTARA CASE (Bologna, Italy)

Edgardo Mortara, a seven year old Jewish boy, was kidnapped by the Roman Catholic Church on the pretext that a servant girl claimed that she had baptized him. The Pope, Pious IX, refused to surrender him despite much protest. The combination of the Damascus Affair and this affair led to the unification of many Jews, and later to the establishment of the Alliance Israelite Universelle.


1504 December 27, MOSCOW (Russia)

"Proselytizing" Jews in Moscow and Kiev were expelled after a few high officials converted to Judaism.


1858 MOSCOW (Russia)

The Jewish population of the entire Moscow district consisted of only 340 men and 104 women. Most of the men were former Cantonists, forcibly conscripted for 25 years (see 1827).


1932 MOSCOW (Russia)

An exclusively anti-Jewish section was opened in the Central anti-Religious Museum, showing the "stupidities of Judaism".


1941 August 24, MOSCOW (Russia)

A meeting with "representatives of the Jewish world" was called to encourage Jews all over the world to help the Soviet Union in its fight against Hitler. This eventually led to the establishment of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee in April of the following year.


1935 MOSCOW (USSR)

All but one member of the HeHalutz Central Committee were arrested.


1942 August 11, MOSCOW RADIO BROADCAST (Russia)

Described how Jews were forced to dig their own graves in the Nazi-occupied Minsk region.


1130 MOSES AL DARI ('False Messiah') (Fez, Morocco)

Traveled from Morocco to the Academy of Yosef Ibn Megas at Lucenna, announcing the arrival of the Messiah and other prophecies. He predicted that the first day of Pesach would be the day of the Messiah's arrival, and many Jews sold their possessions in anticipation. When the Messiah failed to arrive, Al Dari fled to Eretz Israel, where he died.


1853 - 1932 MOSES ALEXANDER (USA)

The first Jewish Governor of an American State, Alexander was born in Germany, began his political career as the mayor of Chillicothe Missouri, and then became mayor of Boise, Idaho before becoming governor. He was active in the Jewish community and helped found the first synagogue in Idaho. The town of Alexander, Idaho is named after him.


1420 - 1495 MOSES B. ELIJAH CAPSALI (Crete-Turkey)

Jewish leader and HaRav HaGadol the first Chief Rabbi of the Ottoman Empire. The official title Hakham Bashi was only officially instituted in 1836. Capsali was well respected, and had excellent relationships with both Mehmed II (1432 1481) and his son Bayezid II (1447 1512). He encouraged Bayezid II to send the Ottoman Navy to Spain in order to help evacuate Spanish Jewish exiles and bring them to the Ottoman empire. His son Elijah (see 1523) also became a respected scholar. them to the Ottoman empire. His son Elijah (see 1523) also became a respected scholar.


1388 - 1460 MOSES BEN ISAAC RIETI (Italy)

Composed the encyclopedic moralistic work, Mikdash Me'at (The Little Temple), describing a symbolic journey and search for paradise similar to Dante's 14th century "Divine Comedy".


1250 MOSES BEN JACOB OF COUCY (the Semag)

Published his Sefer Hamitzvot Hagadol (The Large Book of Precepts), which classified the law according to the six hundred and thirteen commandments, dividing them into two hundred and sixty-five prohibitions and two hundred and forty-eight precepts. The Semaq was admittedly influenced by Maimonides, whom he quotes quite often. His son-in-law, Isaac ben Joseph of Borbeil, continued his work.


1135 - 1204 (20 Tevet 4965) MOSES BEN MAIMON (Maimonides) (Cordova, Spain)

Fled from Spain at the age of thirteen after the capture of Cordova by the Al Mohadan fanatics. He became court physician to Saladin of Egypt. He is famed for his "radical" philosophical work on the unity of reason and faith, Guide for the Perplexed, which was heavily criticized in the Jewish world (especially by Franco-German rabbis). Most of the debate, led by Meir ben Todros Abulafia, concerned rational philosophy and its place within faith and belief in God. The anti-Maimonides school, led by Solomon Montpellier and Jonah Gerunda, insisted that all miracles and aggadic interpretations must be taken literally and that any explanation was heresy. They were also concerned that it would be easier to persuade people to give up beliefs based on rational arguments. Maimonides' greatest work was his Mishna Torah, a guide to Jewish traditions and practices ( see 1180), and is referred to simply as the Rambam (his acronym). He was a prodigious correspondent, answering questions from all over the world. His letter to Yemen, Igeret Teiman, written in Arabic, comforted the community during difficult times. In the letter he discussed the relations with Christianity and Islam and encouraged the Jews, from a historical perspective, to be strong.


1625 - 1697 MOSES BEN MORDECAI ZACUTO (Amsterdam, Holland)

Rabbi poet Together with Joseph Penso, he was a pioneer of Hebrew drama. Zacuto is known for commentary on the Mishnah Kol Ha ReMe"Z , as well as his commentaries on the Zohar . He was also noted for his play Yesod Olam (Foundation of the World) the first biblical drama in Hebrew and his dramatic poem, Tofteh Arukh apparently inspired by Dante's Divine Comedy.


1194 - 1270 (4 Cheshvan 5031) MOSES BEN NACHMAN (Nachmanides) (Spain-Eretz Israel)

Scholar and Jewish leader, known as the Ramban. He is famed for his commentaries on the Bible and his prowess in debating against Pablo Christiani, a heretic Jew, in Aragon 1263. Although Nachmanides was rewarded by King James I for his presentation, the Dominicans were determined that the outcome should be a victory for Christianity. Two years later they succeed in bringing charges against him for defaming Christianity. Under pressure from Pope Clement IV, he was banished from Spain. Nachmanides later settled in Eretz Israel where he established a synagogue and school for talmudic studies.


1240 - 1305 MOSES BEN SHEM TOV LEON (Lyon, France)

Publisher and possibly the author of the Zohar, which he attributed to the second century Tanna, Shimon bar Yochai. Written in Aramaic, it flowed with complex symbolism and mythology. It became the major component of the Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism), expounding four steps of biblical interpretation: literal, aggadic, philosophical and Raza de Mehmanuta - secret mystery of faith.


1759 - 1841 (25 Tamuz 5601) MOSES BEN ZVI TEITELBAUM (Hungary)

Hasidic rabbi, scholar and founder to the dynasty of Hasidic rabbis in Hungary and Galicia. Teitelbaum, a student of the Seer of Lublin, was one of the first to spread Hasidism to Hungary. His two most famous works are the Hasidic classic Yismach Moshe (Moses Rejoices) and Heshiv Moshe (Moses Responds), a responsa.


C. 1413 MOSES BOTAREL (Spain)

Philosopher and false Messiah. Botarel wrote a non kabalistic commentary on the Sefer Yetzirah ( The book of Creation") .He was a self described saint and pious Rabbi. He invited all Rabbis to send him questions which he would answer.


1628 MOSES COHEN HENRIQUES (Bay of Matanzas Cuba )

A Jewish pirate, he helped the Dutch capture large part of a Spanish treasure fleet. The treasure is estimated to have been worth over 11.5 million guilders (close to 1 billion dollars today). For a while he ran his own pirate island off the coast of South America. When the Portuguese retook the area he escaped. Henriques became an adviser to the pirate Henry Morgan who later as Lieutenant Governor of Jamaica granted him citizenship in Jamaica on November 18, 1681.


1522 - 1570 (22 Tamuz 5330) MOSES CORDOVERO (Ramak) (Safed, Eretz Israel)

Rabbi, philosopher and early Kabbalist. Cordovero was a student of Joseph Caro and a teacher of Isaac Luria. His classic Pardes Rimonim (Orchard of pomegranates) which he completed when he was just 27, developed for the first time a Kabalistic system. Among his other works are Elimah Rabati, also on kabalistic systems, Tefilah L'moshe on Prayers, and Tomer Devorah (Date palm of Deborah) which developed Kabalistic ethical literature.


C. 1782 - 1854 MOSES ELIAS LEVY (USA)

Pioneer in Florida. Levy was a plantation developer who was rumored to have been the first to introduce the growing of sugar cane there. Levy fought against the idea of slavery and proposed that a Jewish agricultural school be developed to replace slavery. He also tried to encourage Jewish settlement of the area. Levy was not successful in either managing his farms or giving over his Jewish ideals to his children, both of whom converted. One of them, David Levy-Yulee, became the first senator of Florida.


1895 - 1986 (13 Adar 5746) MOSES FEINSTEIN (Russia-USA)

Rabbi, halachist and leader of American Orthodox Jewry. Born in Uzda, Belarus, he was the Rabbi of Luban until he left for the United States in 1937. He was head of the Mesivta (Yeshiva) Tiferes Yerushalayim in New York. Rabbi Feinstein became the world-renowned leader in the applications of Halacha to modern technology and current issues. His responsa Igrot Moshe are accepted as the final word by most of the Orthodox Ashkenazi community.


C. 1490 - 1567 Moses Hamon (Amon) (Spain-Turkey)

Renown physician, scholar, philanthropist, and community leader. Hamon served as the chief physician to Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent (r. 15201566), whom he accompanied on his military expeditions. His treatise, Diseases of the Mouth was the first book on Dentistry written in Turkey. Hamon actively defended the Jewish community from false ritual accusations and interceded with the sultan on behalf of Donna Gracia when her property was threatened due to her secret observance of Judaism.


1707 - 1747 (26 Iyar 5507) MOSES HAYYIM LUZZATTO (Padua, Italy)

A great poet, dramatist, and above all, mystic. He became an unfortunate victim of the reaction to Sabbatianism. Under pressure from local Italian Jewish Authorities he was forced to deliver most of his writings to his teacher Isaiah Bassan and refrain from teaching Kabbala. Much of these were eventually destroyed . Luzzatto (known as the Ramchal) moved to the relative freedom of Amsterdam for a number of years and tragically died soon after his arrival in Eretz Israel. His most lasting achievements were his use of Hebrew in secular poetry and his ethical work, Mesilat Yesharim (Path of Righteous). Luzzatto also wrote two Hebrew dramas, Migdal Oz (Tower of Strength) and La-Yesharim (Praise to the Righteous) and a collection of 150 hymns.rn


1812 January 21, - 1875 MOSES HESS (Germany)

Author, socialist, and forerunner of the Zionist movement. In his book Rome and Jerusalem (1862), he based German anti-Semitism on race and nationhood and advised Jews to accept the fact and revive their own state in Eretz Israel. Hess, a socialist, orginally worked with Marx and Engels but grew disillusioned with the idea that a "progressive society would eradicate anti-Semitism".


1070 - 1139 MOSES IBN EZRA (Granada, Spain)

Poet and philosopher known for his profound spirituality and rich expressiveness. Ibn Ezra also wrote a history of Spanish Jewry where he claimed a Jewish presence in the Iberian Peninsula from the time of the second Temple.


1654 - 1696 MOSES IBN HABIB (Salonika- Eretz-Israel)

Rabbi and Halachist. In 1689 Ibn Habib (Chaviv) became the Rishon LeZion (Sephardic chief Rabbi of Israel), and the head of a major yeshiva in Jerusalem. His Halachic expertise lay in the area of marriage and divorce. His major works, Get Pashut and Ezrat Nashim, relate to the problem of agunot . Agunot refers to a Jewish woman who is "chained" to her marriage, either because her husband is missing (on a voyage, or after a battle), or one who husband refuses to grant her a divorce. His works still serve as a cornerstone in relating to these laws. In addition, he wrote Shammot ba-Aretz, dealing with the Talmud.


C. 1520 - 1572 (18 Iyar 5332 Lag BaOmer) MOSES ISSERLES (The Rama) (Poland)

The son-in-law of Shalom Shakna. He served as Rosh Ha (Head of the) Yeshiva in Cracow. His main work was the adaptation of Caro's Shulchan Aruch to European Jewry, called Mappah Hashulchan (The Tablecloth). An earlier work, Darke Moshe Hakatzar (The Ways of Moses Abridged) was written on the Tur (see 1270). He was also known for the almost 100 responsa he published. Isserles tried to strengthen the stature of many customs, elevating them almost to the level of commandments. On the other hand, he was very lenient when it came to cases of stress or financial loss.


1843 - 1910 MOSES LOEB LILIENBLUM (Lithuania)

Haskalist, nationalist, and author. His early works denounced Orthodoxy for not replacing their "ancient texts" with new ideas. After the 1881-2 Russian riots, he joined Pinsker in calling for settlements in Eretz Israel. Lilienblum was opposed to any dilution of Zionism, such as Ahad Ha'am's cultural Zionism.


1753 MOSES MENDELSSOHN PUBLISHED JERUSALEM

His philosophical work in which he professed that while the basis for Judaism is determined by Jewish law and tradition, they must integrate themselves into the local culture. Mendelssohn (see 1729) also asserted that the host countries must not interfere with the religion of its citizens.


1729 September 26, - 1786 MOSES MENDELSSOHN (Dessau, Germany)

Born into an orthodox Jewish family, he was influenced by Rabbi David Hershel Frankel, whose knowledge of philosophy and Talmud was vast. At fourteen, he left on foot for Berlin, together with Frankel. There he met Gotthold Lessing, who introduced him to German literature and helped him publish his philosophical Dialogues. In 1783, Mendelssohn and his pupil, Naphtali Wessely, translated the Pentateuch into German. He served as the subject of Lessing's play Nathan the Wise and was the founder of Ha Me'assef, a Hebrew magazine. Believing in Jewish-Christian friendship, he tried to awaken secular interests in his fellow Jews and make them less alien to the Christian world. This backfired, as many of his own grandchildren converted to Christianity.


1200 - 1260 MOSES OF COUCY (the Semag) (France)

Author of Sefer Mitzvot Gadol (The Large Book of Precepts). It is arranged according to the six hundred and thirteen precepts of the Bible (mitzvot), affirmative and prohibitive, and includes sources (unlike Maimonides). He was one of the later Tosafists and is frequently quoted by later halachic leaders.


1807 - 1879 (1 Shvat 5640) MOSES SCHICK (Maharam Shick) (Slovakia-Austria)

Rabbi, Halachist and Jewish leader. Schick was a student of Moses Sofer. He established a Yeshiva at Hust, Hungary which attracted many students. Although he was a vigorous opponent of the Reform movement, he believed that sermons could be preached in any language. Schick was also a strong supporter of the Old Yishuv in Jerusalem. He composed almost 1000 responsa and is remembered for his works Maharam Schick, and Derashot.


1762 - 1839 (25 Tishrei 5600) MOSES SOFER (The Chasam Sofer) (Pressburg)

Wrote a voluminous collection of responsa called Chidushai Teshuvot Moshe Sofer (Novella and Responsa of Moses Sofer). It was divided into four parts containing 1377 responsa. He was a strong supporter of rigid orthodoxy, especially pertaining to change in synagogue ritual.


1915 May 20, - 1981 MOSHE DAYAN (Eretz Israel)

Was born in Kibbutz Degania. As a teenager he joined the Haganah. He lost an eye in an attack on Lebanon with an Australian Division. He rose in the ranks of the Israeli army, becoming Minister of Defense in 1967. He resigned after the Yom Kippur War because he was criticized for Israel's lack of preparedness. In 1977 he joined the Begin government.


1095 MOSHE IBN EZRA (Spain)

Was forced by Almohad intolerance to leave Granada. The great poet wandered for 4 decades, mourning the great past of Granada.


1899 - 1966 MOSHE KOUSSEVITZKY (Kusevitsky) (Lithuania - USA)

Hazzan. Koussevitzky became the cantor in the Great Synagogue of Vilna in 1924. After an argument in 1927 between Sirota and the Board regarding his frequent concerts, Koussevitzky was appointed in his place at the Great Synagogue ("Tlomackie Shul") in Warsaw. During WWII he found refuge in Russia where he even performed in the Russian Opera. He immigrated to the United States after the war. He was considered by many to rival Yossele Rosenblatt for the title of the greatest cantor of all times.


1943 April 22, MOSHE MERIN (Bedzin, East Upper Silesia)

The head of the Judenrat of Bedzin and Sosnowiec informed the council that 8 young men were executed by the Gestapo for treason. Merin, who supported cooperation with the Nazis " in order to save a few", had sent some of the victims to the Gestapo for their underground activities.


1945 September 23, MOSHE SNEH (Eretz Israel)

Head of the Haganah General Headquarters, disappointed in the continual anti immigration attitude of the British, requested from David Ben Gurion permission to begin to act. Ben-Gurion agreed and instructed him to "stage a grave incident" as a warning. With this change in attitude, plus the protest against their actions, "the season" against the Irgun (Etzel) ended and the three groups began to cooperate in order to clandestinely bring in Jewish immigrants.


656 - 661 MOSLEM CIVIL WAR (Medina)

Broke out between the followers of Uthman, the third Caliph (ruler) and the followers of Ali, the fourth Caliph, who was the son-in-law of Mohammed. The war began when Ali murdered Uthman and proclaimed himself leader of the Moslems.


1854 MOTZA

A Jewish farm was purchased from the nearby Arab village of Qalunya by Shaul Yehuda an Iraqi Jew, with the help of the British council James Finn. A number of Jewish families joined him and an inn was set up by Yehoshua Yellin(1843-1924). Herzl planted a tree there in 1898, but it was cut down by the Turks during WWI for firewood.


1852 January 16, MOUNT SINAI HOSPITAL (New York, USA)

The first Jewish Hospital in the United States (originally known as "Jews Hospital of New York") was founded by a group of mostly German Jewish immigrants. One of its founders was Samson Simson, one of the first Jewish lawyers in New York City who had studied under Aaron Burr. That same year, he also helped found the Beth Hamedrash Hagodal. Other contributors included Samuel Myer Isaacs, who helped found Maimonides College in Philadelphia, and Adolphus Simeon Solomons, who in 1881 helped Clara Barton found the Red Cross.


953 MU'IZZ (Sicily)

The Fatimite conqueror of Sicily, appointed Paltiel as his Vizier and physician. Paltiel was in charge of provisioning the army during Mu'izz's conquest of Egypt. Paltiel was a generous man and shared his wealth with many Jewish communities. His son Samuel brought his body to Jerusalem for burial.


C. 1490 MUHAMMAD AL-MAGHILI (Tlemcen, North Africa)

A local preacher and Islamic scholar .In his book Tuhfat al-Nazir , he called for the death or expulsion of the Jews in the northern Sahara. The synagogues in Tamantit, Touat and Tlemcen were destroyed. Al-Maghili (1425-1505) set new regulations which restricted Jewish movement in the Saharan borderlands to the northern southern edge from Libya to Morocco and which were in place until 1860. He also succeeded (1492) in convincing the emperor of the Songhai Empire (Western Africa), Askia Mohammad (ca. 1443 1538), to prohibit Jews from living or trading in his kingdom. This included the main trading stop Timbuktu.


1750 MULAY AL-YAZID (Morocco)

Became sultan of Morocco after rebelling against his father and brother. The Jews under his father Mulay Mohammad III (1710 1790) were used as negotiators and bankers. Al-Yazid (1750 1792) being refused a loan by the Jews during his insurgency, swore vengeance. The Jewish community of Tetun was attacked, with the richer Jews being tied to the tails of horses and dragged through the city. Many others were murdered and the women raped. This was followed by attacks on other communities, including Fez and Mekns and Marrakesh. Jews, who had been loyal to his father, were hanged by their feet for 15 days until they died. The Spanish consul, Solomon Hazzan, was accused of betrayal and killed as were hundreds of Muslims loyal to his father or brother. Al- Yazid (1750-1792) died of a battle wound before completing a list of notable Jews and Muslims to be executed.


1816 MUNICH (Bavaria, Germany)

Jews were allowed to bury their dead within the city limits. Until this time, all the Jewish dead had to be transported to Kriegshaber for burial. This marked the beginning of the official Jewish presence in Munich.


1285 October 12, MUNICH (Germany)

A blood libel resulted in the death of 68 Jewish inhabitants. The one hundred and eighty survivors were burned alive in the synagogue.


1938 September 30, MUNICH AGREEMENT

Hitler convinced Chamberlain and Daladier, heads of the governments of England and France, that he wanted to protect German rights in Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland by annexing it, and that he had no further demands or plans for expansion. Chamberlain gave in, claiming that by doing so he had achieved "peace in our time". Within 2 days German troops began to occupy the Sudetenland.


1922 November 11, MUNICH PUTSCH (Germany)

General Ludendorff and an Austrian corporal named Adolph Hitler (1889-1945) were arrested after a short parade proclaiming the overthrow of the government. Hitler was sent to Landsburg prison where he wrote Mein Kampf (My Battle), a vicious harangue against democracy, communism, the Versaille diktat and, of course, the Jews as the root of all evil. The book became the "Bible" of the Nazis, and was published in almost every major country. Hitler himself soon rose (1925) to become leader of the Nazi Party and chancellor of the German Reich in 1933. Hitler's compulsive hatred of everything Jewish, coupled with his pathological personality, led him to become the first person in history to systematically conceive and implement the extermination of European Jewry.


1866 - 1956 MURAD BEH FARAG ( Egypt)

Jewish scholar and poet. In 1923 he co-authored the first Egyptian constitution. Although a strong Egyptian patriot as portrayed in his poem 'My Homeland Egypt, Place of my Birth', he also believed in the right for the Jews to have a state of their own.


1797 MURDER LIBEL IN GALATZ/GALATI (Romania)

Resulted in attacks throughout the community. Some Jews were forced into the Danube and drowned; others had taken refuge in the synagogue, which was set on fire.


1369 March 23, MURDER OF PETER ( Pedro) OF CASTILE

Near Toledo by his half brother Henry, soon to be known as Henry II. Pope Urban V upon hearing the news exclaimed The church must rejoice at the death of .... a favorer of the Jews.... During his 10 year reign he did his best to persecute and impoverish the Jewish community which included forcing Jews to wear distinctive clothing , and not being allowed to hold public office . This marked the worst anti Jewish policies in Spain since the Visogoths and a harbinger of things to come. In the battle for Toledo some 8000 Jews had been killed, and all of their property sold for the benefit of the new king. Henry ostensibly took the Jews under his "protection" using them to his benefit .


1929 MURRAY GELL-MANN (USA)

Physicist. Gell-Mann helped develop the school of particle physics with his classification known as the "Eightfold way" which he developed together with Yuval Neeman in Israel. His work earned him the Nobel Prize in 1969. Gell-man called the new particles quarks, a name taken from James Joyce's Finnegans Wake.


1943 March 20, MUSSOLINI (Italy)

Pressured by Germany for the lack of enthusiasm of the Italian army in France to act against Jews, Mussolini set up the Polizia Razziale (Racial Police). He appointed Guido Lospinoso as the commissioner of police. Lospinoso soon proved to be a master at evading German instructions. Father Pierre-Marie Benoit, persuaded him to help delay any deportation orders. Together they succeeded in preventing any mass deportations in the Nice area until the Germans took over in September.


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