JEWISH MOSAIC FESTIVAL Sunday, June 11th, 2006Romanian Jewish community RomaniaIsrael Canada by Dr. Rosalind Silverman Dr. Lorelei Silverman
GEOGRAPHYEUROPE ROMANIA Population=22,329,977 Surface= 237,500 sq km ISRAEL
GEOGRAPHY The Carpathians The Danube Delta The Hills Dracula’s Castle The Triumph Arch Bucharest downtown Royal Palace, SinaiaCasino at Black Sea
JEWISH HISTORY MUSEUM IN BUCHAREST Exhibitions display how the once vibrant Jewish community of Romania used to live and what happened during the Holocaust in Romania. The museum opened in 1977 and is housed in an old synagogue built in 1850.Architect Aristide Streja explains the exhibits
HISTORY2nd c. C.E. - Earliest mentions of the Jews in the Roman province of Dacia.12th c. C.E. (second half)- Benjamin of Tudela describes the Vlachs living south of the Danube and their relations with the Jews.14th c., first half- A Jewish quarter is mentioned in the town of Cetatea Alba (Bolgrad), Bassarabia.1473-1474- Isaac Beg, a Jewish doctor sent over by Sultan Uzun Hassan, is accredited at the court of Stephen the Great of Moldavia.1532- In a letter to philologist Johannes Campensis the Romanian humanist Nicolaus Olahus expresses interest in learning Hebrew.1550- A Sephardic community is first mentioned in Bucharest.1593- The Italian geographer Giovanni Antonio Magini notes the presence of Jews in Moldavia in Michael the Braves days.1618- Del Medigo and Shlomo Ibn Arvay are signaled in Iasi.1623- Prince Gabriel Bethlen of Transylvania issues an edict granting privileges to the Jews.1640- Documents indicate the presence of Jewish physicians at Prince Vasile Lupus court in Moldavia.1640- The Govora bill of rights (pravila) includes a provision on the status of Jewish converts to Christianity.1646- Cartea romaneasca de invatatura ("The Romanian Book of Learning") published in Iasi contains legal provisions about the Jews.1653- For fear of Cossack uprising led by Bogdan Chmelnitzki, Ukrainian Jews seek refuge in Moldova.1653- The Swedish preacher Conrad Jacob Hildebrandt mentions Jewish communities in Alba Iulia, Iasi, Soroca, and Stefanesti.1657- Documents indicate Jewish communities living in Craiova and Targoviste.1676- 1677 - Date of the oldest tombstone still standing in the Jewish cemetery of Piatra Neamt, Moldavia.1686- A synagogue is mentioned in the belt makers neighborhood in lasi.1694- 1701 - A Jewish guild is mentioned in the records of the Walachian Treasury under Prince Constantin Brancoveanu.1698- Documents show the existence of a synagogue in the town of Focsani.1702- 1704 - Jewish physicians and apothecaries are mentioned as practicing their trade at Constantine Brancovans court.1715- Oldest tombstone inscription preserved in the Jewish cemetery of Sevastopol Street in Bucharest.1717- Demetrius Cantemirs Descriptio Moldaviae including significant references to the Jews of Moldavia, appears in St Petersburg.1720- 1721 - Jews are mentioned in a public conscription taking place in several northwestern Transylvania counties.1724- Documents show the presence of the Jewish doctor and philosopher Daniel de Fonseca at the court of Nicholas Mavrocordat.1727- 1743 - Register of Prince Constantine Mavrocordat contains important data on the Jews of Moldavia.1731- A statute regularizes the Sacred Brotherhood (Jewish Society for medical and funeral assistance) of the Jews in Oradea.1741- Jewish community in Iasi decides to elect secular leadership on an annual basis.1756- Earliest known decree confirming the appointment of a hakham bashi of the Jewish community in Moldavia and Walachia.1774- Census conducted by the Russian military administration in Moldavia finds around 1, 300 Jewish heads of families.1780- Prince Constantine Moruzi issues a decree authorizing the Jews to found the borough of Soldanesti (Falticeni).1783- Ordinance by the lieutenancy of Bratislava regulates status of Jews in accordance with Emperor Joseph IIs Edict of Tolerance.1792- Count Costache Mares enters an agreement with a group of Jews to settle a market town on his estate of Vladeni.1803- Condica liuzilor, a tax register of the Moldavian Treasury, records about 3000 Jewish heads of families.1804- Prince Alexander Constantine Moruzi of Moldavia renews a rule which prohibits Jews from leasing land estates.1816- Art. 141 in Prince Callimachis Code authorizes Jews to buy houses and shops in the Moldavian towns.1818- Prince Caragea of Walachia approves a request of the Bucharest Sephardim to build a synagogue in one of the suburbs.1831- Organic Regulations in Walachia and Moldavia provide that the Jews shall be regarded as aliens and have no political rights.1834- Reign of Michael Sturza in Moldavia mixes privileges to the Jews with anti-Jewish restrictions.1846 - 1847 - A Great Synagogue is built and inaugurated in Bucharest.
HISTORY1848 - A number of Jewish intellectuals and craftsmen join the revolutionary movements. Jewish bankers Davicion Bally and HillelManoah, painters C.D. Rosenthal and Barbu Iscovescu provide active support to the Revolution.1848 - Manifesto of the Romanian Revolution in Moldavia stipulates gradual emancipation of the Israelites.1848, June 9 - Islaz Proclamation is adopted. Art. 21 provides the "Emancipation of the Israelites."1852, August, 28 - Romanian-Israelite school with Romanian tuition opens in Bucharest.1857, March 22 -"The Romanian Israelite", the first Jewish newspaper in the Romanian principalities, is published in Bucharest.1864 - Cuza gives a speech in which he promises the gradual emancipation of the Jews.1866 - The first Constitution of modern Romania provides in Art. 7 that only Christians can become Romanian citizens. Jews native ofRomania are declared stateless persons. A Jewish problem officially develops in Romania.1867, July 6 - Bucharests Choral Temple is consecrated. Representatives and consuls of several foreign powers, the mayor ofBucharest, cabinet ministers, members of Parliament such as N. Lahovari, I. Marghiloman, etc., attend the ceremony. Rabbi AntoineLevy gives the inaugural speech.1867 - The Jews of Hungary including those from Transylvania become Hungarian citizens.1877 - 1878 - Romanias War of Independence. The Jewish population provides material support for the military. Drafted Jews go tobattle fields. Financed and manned by the Jews, the Zion ambulance service operates in the combat area.1879 - Under pressure of the Berlin Peace Conference, Art. 7 of the Constitution is amended granting non-Christians the right tobecome Romanian citizens. A number of 888 Jews are naturalized for having fought in or supported the War of Independence. Thisdoes not resolve the Jewish problem, though. Naturalization is granted on a case-by-case basis and is subject to Parliament approval.By 1913 as few as 2,000 persons, including the 888 war participants, had been naturalized.1897 - Representatives of Romanian Zionist Movement participate to the First International Congress of Zionism in Basel, Switzerland.1899 - A Romanian census records 266,652 Jewish residents, or 4.5 percent of total population.1909 - The Native Jews Union is created with the main goal of securing naturalization of all native Jews.1913 - Nicolae Iorgas History of the Jews in Our Lands is published. It is the first survey by a Romanian historian on Jewish history.1916 -1919 - Romanias unifying war. Over 20,000 Jews, accounting for 10 percent of Jewish residents, are enlisted or enlist voluntarily.Of them, 882 die in action and more than 700 are wounded while 825 are decorated.1918 - Romanias Great Unification. The countrys Jewish organizations hail the historic fulfillment of Romanian endeavors. The numberof Jewish residents rises three-fold, as new provinces join their homeland.1922 - The Union of Jewish Communities in the Old Kingdom is accredited.1922 -1932 - Jewish personalities and organizations get involved in parliamentary activity.1923 - The Native Jews Union turns into Romanian Jews Union.1923 - New Constitution is adopted. Art. 133 extends Romanian citizenship to all Jewish residents and equality of rights to all Romaniancitizens. The Jews are thereby granted political rights equal to those of all other citizens.1930 - Census counts 756,930 Jewish residents, or 4.2% of total population. 32.99% of Jewish residents were occupied in trade, 29.9% inthe processing industry, and over 4% in liberal professions.1931 - The Jewish Party of Romania is founded.1937 - The Federation of Jewish Communities Unions (FUCE) is established.1937 - Goga-Cuza government takes office. Anti-Semitism becomes state policy.1940, July 10 - FUCE issues a declaration of solidarity with the Romanian nation, as the state loses Bassarabia and Bukovina.
HISTORY1940, August - A law-decree imposes a legal status of the Jews based on the racist principles of the Nuremberg legislation that NaziGermany had adopted in 1935.1940, August - Dictate of Vienna decides that Transylvanias northern and western part is to be given up to Hungary. Over 150,000Romanian Jews used to live on this territory.1940, September- Romania is proclaimed a National Legionary State.1940, Sep.-1941, Jan. - Generalization of anti-Jewish legislation. The ruling Legionnaires foster a policy of loot and terror against theJews.1941, January 22-23 - Over 120 Jews are killed in Bucharest pogrom associated with the Legionnaire rebellion.1941, June 22 - Romania joins Nazi Germany in war against Soviet Union. Anti-Jewish terror sets in.1941, June 29-July 6 - Massacre of the Jews in Iasi. Eight to twelve thousand Jews are killed either shot down in the streets and atpolice headquarters, or suffocated in death trains introduced for this purpose.1941, June-July - The Jews are evacuated from the countryside and small towns and forced to relocate in county capitals. Those fromoil-rich basins are interned in the Teis-Targoviste camp. Groups of Moldavian Jews are interned in Targu Jiu camp for politicaldetainees.1941, summer and fall - Pogroms in Bassarabia and Bukovina. The Jewish residents of Basarabia and those of northern and southernBukovina are deported to Trans-Dniester death camps.1942, fall - Deportations are halted. Antonescu regime for circumstantial reasons refuses to deport the Jews from Romania to Nazideath camps.1944, May-June - Horthy occupation regime deports the Jews from northern Transylvania to Nazi death camps.1944, August 23 - Antonescu regime is overturned in Romania.After 1944- The Communist regime gradually takes control of the country. Mass emigration of the Jews begins. Most of them immigrateto Israel. Those that stay behind go through a deep social and economic restructuring and are gradually integrated in the new socialand economic structures of Romanian society.1948 - The State Jewish Theater opens in Bucharest.1949,June- The Federation of the Jewish Communities in Romania (FCER) and the Mosaic religion are given legal status.1956- Revista cultului mosaic ("The Magazine of the Mosaic Cult") - renamed Realitatea Evreiasca ("Jewish Reality") in 1995 - starts tobe published.1977 - The Center of Romanian Jewish History Research is established.1978- The History Museum of the Jewish Communities in Romania opens in Bucharest. The Romanian Jewish History DocumentationCenter is established.After 1989- FCER expands its activity.1994- FCER elects a new leadership consisting of Acad. Prof. Dr. Nicolae Cajal as president, engineer Theodor Blumenfeld as generalsecretary, and advocate Iulian Sorin as assistant general secretary. FCER coordinates the activity of 48 local communities. Youthsaccount for about one-fifth of the 12,000 community members.
HOLOCAUSTDuring the period preceding, and immediately following the outbreak of World War II, therewere approximately 850,000 Jews in Romania. Only about 400,000 survived after the war.1941- almost half of Romanias Jewish population was deported to Transnistria, Ukraine. Only54,000 survived that ordeal.Of the 150,000 Jews living in northern Transylvania (a Romanian region ceded to Hungary inAugust, 1940), 105,000 were murdered, mostly following their deportation in 1944 to deathcamps in Germany and German-occupied Poland by the Hungarian Fascists.1941-1945- Starting at the end of October, 1940, the Iron Guard began a massive anti-Semiticcampaign, torturing and beating Jews and looting their shops, culminating in the failed coupand a pogrom in January 1941 in Bucharest in which 120 Jews were killed. Jewish homeswere looted, shops burned, and many synagogues desecrated or razed to the ground (theGreat Sephardi Synagogue Kahal Grande and the old Bet ha-midrash in Bucharest). Some ofthe leaders of the Bucharest community were imprisoned in the community council building,and worshipers were ejected from synagogues by force. In Iasi in July 1941 Romanian andGerman soldiers, members of the Romanian Special Intelligence Service, police, andresidents participated in an assault on the Jews. Thousands were murdered.1942 Struma was a ship chartered to carry Jewish refugees from Romania to Palestine. Theship was sunk by a Soviet submarine with the loss of 768 lives (mainly Betar members andwealthy Romanian Jews who could afford to pay the high price of a ticket).Most of the survivors fled postwar communism and emigrated to Israel or the United States. VICTIMS
SOLIDARITY AND RESCUE Though hostility and indifference were the words thatcharacterized the general attitude of the population, there werealso cases of solidarity and compassion for Jews shown byRomanians. Protest against Deportation of Romanian Jews was signedby political leaders of the country: Iuliu Maniu (head of NationalPeasant Party), Nicolae Lupu, Ion Mihalache, C. Bratianu(National liberal Party leader), of Romanian Orthodox Church,Royal House especially Queen Mother Elena (Rightous amongNations), and Prince Barbu Stirbei. The Queen mother Elena’sappeal to Ion Antonescu saved the life of thousands of Jewspreventing their deportation to Transnistria. Here are some betterknown histories. Professor Raoul Sorban saved many Jews fromTransylvania and facilitated the meeting of Rabbi Carmilly- Queen mother ElenaWeinberger -the neolog rabbi of Timisoara- with Iuliu Maniu todiscuss the ways of saving the life of Romanian Jews from thatRomanian region that was under Hungarian occupation. Dr. Traian Popovici, former mayor of Cernauti during theSecond World War saved 19000 Jews from deportation toTransnistria. Viorica Agarici (chair of Romanian Red Cross, laterresigned) aid survivors of “death train” to Transnistria whileGrigore Profir helped save dozens of Iasi Jews.
ANTISEMITISMAccording to the World Jewish Congress, there were 428,312Jews in Romania in 1947. Mass emigration ensued and by1956, there were 144,236 Jews in Romania. From 1948 until1960, more than 200,000 Romanian Jews went to Israel,reducing the population in Romania to less than 100,000 by the1960s. At the same time, Romania outlawed its Jewishorganizations. The situation for the Jews of Romania laterimproved, but the community has shrank: today less than10,000 Jews live in Romania. Despite being a very smallminority, attacks on Jews especially in the press are quite Postcard, Bucharest 1900frequent in Romania.•The nationalist and anti-semitic Greater Romania Party (PRM), led by Corneliu Vadim Tudor, became thesecond largest party in the Romanian parliament after it won 21 percent of the vote in the November 2000elections. In its ongoing slander campaign against former Jewish communists and against Israeli andJewish businessmen in Romania, alleged Israeli-Jewish-US hegemonic policies in the global arena.• Small nationalist, xenophobic and anti-semitic Iron Guard, or Legionnaire, groups (derived from thewartime fascist movement) form the extra-parliamentary extreme right wing in Romania. “Nests” (theoriginal name of local branches of the movement) of such groups exist in various localities.• In general, manifestations of the ‘new anti-semitism’, namely, the attacks in western Europe associatedwith the identification of Israel/Zionism/Jews as a single evil entity, were not evidenced in Romania.• The Center for Monitoring and Combating Anti-semitism in Romania, founded in 2002, reported anti-semitic graffiti on the walls of the Bucharest Jewish Theatre and of condominiums in Cluj in October 2002.In addition, two synagogues were desecrated in April and June 2002. As in previous years, anti-semiticpropaganda accompanied the continuing campaign to rehabilitate the legacy of wartime fascist ruler IonAntonescu and to cleanse historical memory of the fate of Romanian Jewry during the Holocaust. Extremistsites on the Internet in Romania, including some related to the legacy of the Iron Guard, appear to beexpanding their content. The material on the pro-Legionnaire sites attempts to introduce the doctrines ofCodreanu to new generations through historical revisionism, including whitewashing the Iron Guard’smurderous activities, such as the January 1941 pogrom in Iasi, which it attributed to “Jewish behavior.”
SYNAGOGUESRomania is home to more than 800 Synagogues and 700 cemeteries. Most Synagogues are still used by the smalllocal Jewish communities scattered throughout the country: Bucharest, Arad, Bacau, Baia Mare, Botosani,Brasov, Campulung Moldovenesc, Cluj-Napoca, Constanta, Dorohoi, Galati, Iasi, Oradea, Piatra Neamt, Roman,Satu Mare, Sighetu Marmatiei, Timisoara, Targu Mures and Targu Neamt. .. The Coral Temple Bucharest 1867 The Synagogue Podul Great Synagogue, 1850 Mogosoaiei The Synagogue in Oradea The Synagogue in Timisoara Memorial Temple Cluj
RELIGIOUS LEADERS Alexandru Shafran, chief Rabbi of Romania, forced to quit by the communists in 1947,Yekutiel Yehuda Teitelbaum, Moses Rosen, chief Rabbi later became chief Rabbi of GenevaChief Rabbi of Sighet (1911-44) of Romania 1947-1994Great spiritual leaders lead Jewish communities in prayers and intimes of distress.Iasi was the headquarters of Hacham Bashim in the 17th Centuryand one of the great European centers of Jewish learning during the19th century. Satmar (from Satu Mare) in a broad sense is probablythe largest Hasidic dynasty in existence today, but formaldemographic comparisons with other Hasidim are not available. It isbelieved, however, to number close to 100,000 adherents. Religious objects from the Jewish Museum, Bucharest Rabbi Marulies Bucharest 1985
LIFE IN THE CITY Streets inhabited by Jews in Bucharest at the beginning of the 20th CenturyThe Romanian Jewish community is an amazing blend of Sephardiand Ashkenazi Jews. Between the two world wars the Jewish lifereached its peak with almost 800,000 Jews living in Romania. In thecities the Jews were in great part professionals, businessmen, andartists. Askenazi family in Bucharest Sephardim in Turnu-SeverinBanquet in honour of Chaim Weitzmann, Iasi
LIFE IN THE VILLAGE Jewish cemetery and wood synagogues in Sighet Life in small villages, or shtetls was sometimes harsh in Romania. The Jews were mainly innkeepers or small merchants. Eastern European Jews lived a separate life as a minority within the culture of the majority in villages and small towns. They spoke Yiddish and, although many younger Jews in larger towns were beginning to adopt modern ways and dress, older people often dressed traditionally, the men wearing hats or caps, and the women modestly covering their hair with wigs or kerchiefs. By the beginning of World War II there were 120 wood synagogues (shtibel, shil) built in Romanian villages.
LIFE DURING THE COMMUNISM . A trip to Paris of the Coral Temple choir Shira VeZimra conducted by Izu GottIn 1939, Romania with a Jewish population of 760,000, had the third largest Jewishpopulation in Europe after the Soviet Union and Poland. The Holocaust destroyedmore than one-half of the Jewish population, as well as its vibrant religious andcultural life. When the communists took power, Jewish organizations, especiallyZionist ones, were outlawed. Chief Rabbi Dr. Alexander Shafran was labeled an"anti-Communist agent“ and forced to leave Romania in 1947. Dr. Moses Rosenbecame the Chief Rabbi of Romania. He was instrumental in rebuilding some of theJewish institutions, to the extent that it was possible under Communist rule, and Jewish burial societyfacilitated the emigration of many thousands of Jews to Israel and other parts of theworld.In 1950, Romania started to sell its Jews. Ceausescu is reported to have said that“Romania’s most important exports were Jews, Germans, and oil.” While Ceausescuhad never openly expressed anti-semitism as a part of his ideology, he purged Jewsfrom the most influential positions in all fields of endeavor, and practicing the Jewishreligion was not possible for many professionals or leaders who had to be membersof the communist party in order to maintain those positions. Many Jews chose tochange their name to Romanian ones and led a secular life. A fraction chose to cling Brit milato traditional values, to religion, and tried to lead a Jewish life. This life was centeredaround the Coral Temple and the activities of Federation of Jewish Communities.Between 1950 and 1960, over 350,000 Jews chose to emigrate to Israel.
LIFE AFTER THE REVOLUTION Jewish old home Amalia and Jewish choir Meghilla reading Dr. Moses RosenLess than 10,000 Jews, most aged over 60, live in Romania today. Severalthousand more, mostly in mixed marriages, are thought not to have declaredthemselves as Jews. The major Jewish centers are in Bucharest, Iasi, Cluj andOradea, where the local communities are well organized.There is a revival of Jewish life mainly due to Lubavitch activities, and aid fromdifferent North American organizations, as well as from Israeli businessmenwho come to Romania to conduct business. The American Jewish JointDistribution Committee has been especially active in fostering welfare workamong Romania’s impoverished elderly Jews.There is a very intense cultural life centered around the Jewish theatre and theCultural Association of Friendship Romania-Israel, led by Victor Barladeanu.Book launching, Hebrew classes, film releases, exhibitions, lectures on Jewishthemes, and concerts are only a few of its activities.
LIFE AFTER THE REVOLUTION Coral temple, Bucharest The Chief Rabbi of Romania, Menachem Hacohen . Tu Bishvat 2006Religious services, especially during Jewish holidays, are well attended and especially rallythe younger generation.The Federation of Jewish Communities of Romania, led by chief Rabbi Menachem Hacohen,promotes and coordinates communal activities. Besides publishing a monthly journal,Realitatea Evreiasca, under the directorship of Dorel Dorian, the Federation documents thehistory of Jewish life in Romania and its publications and symposia are well covered by theRomanian media. Hasefer publishing house issues dozens of titles on Jewish topics,including works by the community’s historical center. There is also a kosher restaurant,Izvorul Rece, and many Israeli-owned stores carry kosher products. For some RomanianJews, notably among those with an assimilated background, the religious and cultural valuesof Judaism are still perceived as "our traditions". Some traditions were created recently, likethe Hanukkiadas, as the visits of the few rabbis and other leaders remaining in the country tosmall communities during Hanukkah festival.
JEWISH EDUCATION AFTER THE REVOLUTIONAfter the revolution there was a revival of Jewish education. Lauder-Reut is a primary Jewishschool in Bucharest. Benjamin Netanyahu inaugurated the building of the future Jewish highschool in Bucharest. Lauder-Reut school, Bucharest
THE REVIVAL OF JEWISH YOUTH- JOINT ACTIVITIES JOINT together with FEDROM (the Federation of Jewish Communities of Romania) launched a Jewish Education program aimed at youth. Here are some of their programs: Revitalization of Romania’s Talmud Torah network An annual two-week Summer Education Seminar. For many, this seminar is their first opportunity to explore Jewish issues Regional and national Seminars on Jewish Identity, Religious Practices, Leadership Development Jewish Camps for children and pre-teens aged 5-13 The Jewish Education Network and Jewish Education through the mail (JEM), which reach over 400 families OTER – the Organization for Young Jews in Romania, with over 10 branches Participation of Romanian Jewish youth in international programs such as the Machol Hungaria annual Israel dance festival in Hungary, the March of the Living, the International Bible Contest, and the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation/JDC International Jewish Summer Camp in Szarvas, Hungary. The Jewish Agency (Sohnut) sets up the “Tnuat Aliyah” youth club, where young Jews who are entitled to make aliyah have a chance to study basic Hebrew, learn about Israel and make new friends. The youth club also has an Israeli dancing group called “Hora”. The group has been touring Romania and Israel and is also performing at various local Jewish and social events. The Pedagogical Center in Bucharest organizes Jewish activities and education. The staff is made of young people from EUJS (the European Union of Jewish Students) and the WUJS (the World Union of Jewish Students). The FEDROM has published a Siddur Kabbalat Shabbat for those who are not familiar with the services. The publication includes the Hebrew text with Romanian transliteration and translation and a Birkon Shabbat, a collection of blessings and songs that accompany the Shabbat traditions, from the time when the family returns after services until Havdalah.
They [the Jews] contributed to each and every aspect of socio-economic and cultural life in that country. “The genii produced by this small and scattered people worked for the good of mankind in general and usedtheir intellectual powers to serve all the great causes, all the matters that interested all the nations amidst which these genii lived and worked...“ Mihail Kogalniceanu
LITERATURE Elie Wiesel was born in 1928 in Sighet, Transylvania. He was fifteen years old when he and his family were deported by the Nazis to Auschwitz. His mother and younger sister perished, his two older sisters survived. Elie and his father were later transported to Buchenwald, where his father died shortly before the camp was liberated in April 1945. After the war, Elie Wiesel studied in Paris and later became a journalist. During an interview with the distinguished French writer, Francois Mauriac, he was persuaded to write about his experiences in the death camps. The result was his internationally acclaimed memoir, “La Nuit” or “Night”, that has since been translated into more than thirty languages. He won a Nobel prize for Peace in 1986.Elie Wiesel dancing Horain his natal Sighet
LITERATUREAcademy member NICOLAE CAJAL, CAIUS TRAIAN DRAGOMIR, HENRI ZALIS,Academy member C. BALACEANU STOLNICI, VICTOR NEUMANN, ALEXANDRUSAFRAN, FRANCISCA BALTACEANU, NEAGU DJUVARA, ION IANOSI, ANDREIOISTEANU, RADU F. ALEXANDRU, RAZVAN VONCU, ILEANA VULPESCU,ALEXANDRA POIENARU, IULIA DELEANU, Academy member FLORINCONSTANTINIU, PETER SHRAGER, GAVRIL IOSANDREI, D.R. POPESCU,BARBU CIOCULESCU, M. COLOSENCO, VIRGIL NEMOIANU, PAUL CERNAT,ANDREI CORBEA, RADU COSASU, STEFAN AUG. DOINAS, S. DAMIAN, HORIAARAMA, ARNOLD HELMAN, GEORGE VOICU, Academy member ALEXANDRUBOBOC, CONSTANTIN ABALUTA, SAUL OSIAS, TEFAN IURES, EVELIN FONEA,MAGDA CARNECI, DUMITRU MICU, VALENTIN F. MIHAESCU, STEFANCAZIMIR, MIRCEA ANGHELESCU, MARIAN MINCU, DUMITRU SOLOMON,HORIA GANE, SHAUL CARMEL, FELICIA CARMELY, ANTOANETA RALIAN,ALEXANDRU SEVER, GABRIEL DIMISIANU, DUMITRU HINCU, AUREL STORIN,HORIA ARAMA, IANCU FISCHER, DAN GRIGORESCU, GRIGORECONSTANTINESCU, OTTO STARCK, VICTOR BARLADEANU, Academy memberALEXANDRU BALACI, DOREL DORIAN, IULIU BARASCH, ISRAIL BERCOVICI,NINA CASSIAN, PAUL CELAN, ANDREI CODRESCU, BENJAMIN FONDANE,ABRAHAM GOLDFADEN, EUGENE IONESCO, GHERASIM LUCA, NORMANMANEA, SASA PANA, IOSIF SAVA, MIHAIL SEBASTIAN, TRISTAN TZARA,ILARIE VORONCA
ARTS Marcel Janco, born in Romania in 1895, had joined a group of artists at the Cafe Voltaire in Zurich, Switzerland in 1916 and was among the principal founders of the Dada Movement. It was established in Cabaret Voltaire, in Zurich, Switzerland, by a group of exiled poets, painters and philosophers who were opposed to war, aggression and the changing world culture. MARCEL IANCU, NICOLAE GROPEANU, IOSIF ISER, C.D. Nicolae Gropeano ROSENTHAL, VICTOR BRAUNER, TIA PELTZ, SOREL ETROG, AFONSE SATTINGER, SAUL STEINBERG, TIBOR ERNO, LEON Women in the Garden ALEX, SANDOR ZIFFER, LOLA SCHMIERER-ROTH, HENRI Marcel Iancu DANIEL, JEAN DAVID, MARGARETA STERIAN, M.H.MAXI, Portrait of a Woman ARTUR SEGALL, BARBU ISCOVESCU, NICOLAE VERMONT, ARTHUR MENDEL, SOLOMON SANIELEVICI, JACQUES HEROLD, SAMUEL MUTZNER, MAX ARNOLD, VIOREL HUSI, R. IOSIF, MINA BYCK-WEPPER, AUREL MARCULESCU, SIGISMUND MAUR, ISAAC RUBIN, IOSIF KLEIN, IANDI DAVID C. D. Rosenthal Iosif Iser Ein Hod Victor Brauner Romania Casting OffThe Jew with a Book Dobrudjan Landscape Her Handcuffs
THEATRE Maia Morgenstern TES, the State Jewish TheaterJewish Theatre in Romania has a tradition dating back 130 years.Documents show that in 1876 the writer and artist Avram Goldfadenstarted the first professional Jewish theatre in the world, in a publicpark in the Romanian town of Iasi. A few months later, Goldfadenmoved with his theatre company to Bucharest. The first review of thework of the Jewish Theatre was written by Romanian poet MihailEminescu. The theater was named in honor of Dr. Iuliu Barasch.TES, the State Jewish Theater in Bucharest, is the first professionalYiddish theatre in the world specializing in Jewish-related plays. Its contemporary repertoireincludes plays by Jewish authors, plays on Jewish topics, and plays in Yiddish (performedwith simultaneous translation into Romanian, using headphones installed in the theater in the1970). Many of the plays also feature Jewish actors.Aside from Goldfaden, other prominent figures of the early Yiddish theatre are: Wolf ZbarjerEhren-Krantz, Zelig Mogulescu, Israel Goldner, Suhar Goldstein, I. Goldenberg, Molly Picon,Glara Young, Jacob Sternberg, Sidy Thal, and Sevila Pastor. More recent ones are: HenryMalineanu, Elly Roman, Leonie Waldman Eliad, Hary Eliad, Maia Morgenstern, TrecyAbramovici, Andrei Finti, Natalie Ester, Mihai Ciuca, Bianca Dumitriu, Octavian Cercel,George Robu, Eugenia Balaure, Marius Calugarita, Theodor Danetti, Roxana Guttman, NicolaeCãlugãrita, Andrei Finti, Rudy Rosenfeld, Veaceslav Grosu, Luana Stoica, Geni Brenda,Arabela Neazi, Florin Petrini, and Mircea Drîmbãreanu.LIA KONIG, LAUREN BACALL, DUSTIN HOFFMAN, VLADIMIR COSMA, JACOB STERNBERG,KIRK DOUGLAS, LINDA EVANS, LARRY HAGMAN also have Romanian ancestors.
DANCE AND MUSIC Hora the traditional round dance of both Romania and Israel Danced slow and solemnly or fast and furiously, the Hora is the national dance of Israel and has been so since that nations founding in 1948. But it was not invented there. It came from Romania, where it is also the national dance and has been so at least since Romania was the Roman province of Dacia nearly two thousand years ago. Oy Rumenye, Rumenye, Geveyn amol a land a ziser a fayner!Romanian music grew in popularity after dances such as the bulgareascaand the sirba became popular among Jews at the end of the 19th century.According to the Ukrainian Yiddish singer Bronya Sakina, "The moreRomanian it sounded, the better we liked it."The folk band of the cellist Jean Marcu, and the musicians A.L. Ivela, C.I.Bernstein, I. Rosensteck, Joseph Schmidt, Alberto della Pergola, ImmanuelBernstein, Eliachem Algazi, Rudolf Steiner, Rudi Ledeanu, Emil Cobilovici,Mauriciu Cohen-Lanaru, Stan Golestan, Filip Lazar, Marcel Mihailovici, HaimSchwartzman, Teodor Fuchs, Leon and Alfred Mendelson, Jehuda LeibLevin, Leopold Stern, the conductor Otto Akerman, Clara Haskil, the famouspianist, the opera director Jose Aratti, Moshe Bazian, cantor, Miriam Fried,violinist, Alma Gluck, soprano, Clara Haskil, pianist, Mandru Katz, pianist,Yoel Levi, conductor, pianist, Sivia Marcovici, violinist, Joseph Moskowitz, Mirabela Dauerklezmer musician, Moishe Oisher, cantor and singer, Joseph Schmidt,cantor, tenor. YEHUDI MENUHIN, SERGIU COMISSIONA and RADU LUPUare also of Romanian origin.
HATIKVAHThe national anthem of Israel Hatikvah ("The Hope") was written by the Galicianpoet Naphtali Herz Imber in Jassy, Romania, in 1878 as a nine-stanza poem named Tikvatenu("Our Hope"). In 1887, the First Zionist Congress adopted it as the anthem of Zionism; later itwas arranged by the composer Paul Ben-Haim, who based the composition partly on RomanianJewish folk tunes. Later the text was edited by the settlers of Rishon LeZion and underwent anumber of other changes until 1948, when the state of Israel was created, and it wasproclaimed as the national anthem of Israel. In its modern version, the anthem text only has thefirst stanza and chorus of the original poem. The most important addition in those parts is thatthe hope is no longer to return to Zion, but to be a free nation in it. The modern adaptation ofthe music for Hatikvah was probably composed by Samuel Cohen in 1888. Its possible that hetook the melody from Smetanas work, or that he got the melody from a Romanian version ofthe folk song, "Carriage and Oxen". כל עוד בלבב פנימה As long as in the heart, within, Kol od balevav Pnimah - ,נפש יהודי הומיה A Jewish soul still yearns, Nefesh Yehudi homiyah ולפאתי מזרח קדימה And onward toward the East, Ulfaatey mizrach kadimah - עין לציון צופיה An eye still watches toward Zion. Ayin ltzion tzofiyah. ,עוד לא אבדה תקותנו Od lo avdah tikvatenu ,התקוה בת שנות אלפים Our hope has not yet been lost, Hatikvah bat shnot alpayim: להיות עם חופשי בארצנו The two thousand year old hope, Lihyot am chofshi bartzenu - .ארץ ציון וירושלים To be a free nation in our own Eretz Tzion vYerushalayim. homeland, The land of Zion and Jerusalem.
SCIENCE The birthday celebration of the Great Rabbi Menachem Hacohen with the Direction Board of the Romanian Jewish Comunities Federation Nicolae Cajal Solomon Marcus at the office of the Acad. Nicolae Cajal,July 1999A long roll of full-fledged, corresponding, and honorary members of the RomanianAcademy may give the measure of Jewish creativeness in the realm of science.Best known is Dr. Nicolae Cajal, virologist and member of the Academy. He waselected to head Romania’s Jewish community in 1994 after the death of RabbiMoses Rosen who led Romania’s Jews since 1947.Other famous scientists are sociologist and Marxist theorist Constantin Dobrogeanu-Gherea, mathematiciansSolomon Marcus and Isaac Jacob Scoenberg, social psychologist Serge Moscovicei, psychologists DavidWechsler, David Emmanuel, E. Abason, A. and M. Haimovici, H. Sanielevici, J. Vladeanu, H. Maicu, thegeologist D. Roman, chemists L. Edeleanu and I. Blum, philologists J. Byck, I.A. Candrea, H. Tiktin, M. Gaster,L. Saineanu, Al. Graur, juridic scientists E. Barasch, A. Schwefelberg, I. Rosenthal, W. Filderman, A. Stern,historians J. Psantir, M. Barasch, J. Kaufman, medical scientists Blatt, R. Brauner, M.H. Goldstein, S. Iagnov,A. Kreindler, L. Meierosohn, B. Menkes, M. Popper, A. Radovici, O. Sager, L. Strominger, A. Teitel, M.Wortheimer, biologists I. Barasch, F. Zicman, I. Fuhn, A. Kanitz, technical scientists Emanoil David, L.Edeleanu, M. Haimovici, M. Bercovici, I. Blum, T. Revici, A. Haimovici, I. Barbalat, A. Hollinger, T. Ganea, I.Schoenberg, A. Sanielevici, I.S. Auslander, S. Sternberg, E. Soru, E. Marcus, phylosopher I. Brucar, M.A.Halevy.
POLITICS Elena "Magda" Lupescu was the mistress of King Carol II of Romania and after his abdication his wife. She is sometimes referred to as Helena Wolff because her father changed it to the Romanian equivalent. She met Carol, then Crown Prince, at the casino near the royal palace in Sinaia. Magda was not noble and Carol was married to Helena of Greece, so the law did not allow her to marry Carol, who, faced with a scandal over their liaison, abdicated his rights as an heir in favor of his legitimate son Mihai in December 1925. In a highly-contested move, Carol returned to Romania on in 1930, officially renounced Magda, and assumed the crown. It was the first time in history when a father followed a son to kingdom. During Carols reign (1930–1940), Magda assumed a leading role in the networks that Carol used to increase his power and wealth. Carol lost territories to the USSR, Hungary, and Bulgaria (summer 1940) and was forced to abdicate. Magda and theLupescu and Carol II in the king resumed their exile, finally married in Rio de Janeiro, then Caribbean in 1940 settled in Portugal as Prince and Princess von Hohenzollern.Before the communism there were Jewish parties in Romania: Uniunea Evreilor Romani (1909),Clubul Parlamentar Evreiesc (1928), Partidul Evreiesc (1930). Until 1940 the chief rabbis weremember of the Parlament: Jacob Niemirower and Alexandru Safran.During communism there were some influentialmembers of the communist party such as Ana andMarcel Pauker, Vitali Holostenco, GheorgheGaston Marin. After the revolution the Parlamenthead was Alexandru Barladeanu and the prime-minister was Petre Roman. Other politicians wereRadu F. Alexandru, Silviu Brucan, Dorel Dorian asrepresentant of the Menora party. Petre Roman Alexandru Barladeanu
BUSINESSThere is a long tradition of Jewish business in Romania. As early as 1383, Dan,king of Valachia gave special priviledge to Jews from Hungary to buy land. Laterother kings invited Jews from Ottoman Empire to develop the nationalcommerce.Jews were invited to populate villages and towns. They were offered land tobuild houses, places of prayers and other communal buildings. Thisphenomenon was mainly encountered in Moldavia, where towns with a majorityJewish population appeared.In Romania between the two world wars, Jews owned 31.14% of commercial andindustrial companies. An example is Marmorosh-Blank & Co. bank founded in1863 or Resita Metallurgical Factories that were in the ownership of one of themost important businessmen of Romania, Max Auschnit. In Moldavia over 75%of merchants were Jewish. Some were small merchants or blue collar workers,and some were farmers especially in Maramures and Basarabia, but most Jewsin Romania were attracted to business or intellectual careers. Prior to theHolocaust, of 8000 doctors living in Romania, 2000 were Jewish. There werealso 2000 engineers and 3000 lawyers. The chamber of commerce between Romania and Israel was the first to be inaugurated in Romania after the fall of communism and the start of a free economy. Many businessmen of Romanian origin from Israel opened businesses in Romania. Israel and Romania will jointly export duty-free goods to the EU. This agreement is in preparation for Romania’s entry into the European Union in 2007.
SPORTSIn 1912 a Jewish sports organization, “Hagvurah,” was established and was active until 1947, when thecommunist regime closed it down and confiscated all its property and equipment. This organization wasquite prominent especially in the sports of soccer and gymnastics. It won many regional competitions andfor a certain period it was even the city champion. In 1920 it won 15 out of 20 prizes that were awarded bythe Macabee competitions in Czernowitz. At the second Macabiah games that were held in Eretz Yisrael in1935, 24 members of this organization participated in the games. Guttman Leo and Zissu, also known as"the famous Guttman brothers", were the most talented sports coaches of "The first Israelite society ofgymnastics". Angelica Adelstein-Rozeanu is considered the world’s greatest female table tennis player in history. She won 17 World titles, including six straight Singles championships from 1950 to 1955. She took the World Women’s Doubles title three times: in 1953 with Giselle Farkas of Hungary and in 1954 and 1955 with Ella Zeller of Romania, and the World Mixed Doubles crown three times-1951, with Bohumil Vana of Czechoslovakia, and in 1952 and 1953, with Ferenc Sido of Hungary.Leon Rottman is one of the greatest Olympic athletesin Romanias history. Rotman competed in two OlympicGames, and was the first Romanian to win two medals at oneOlympiad in canoeing at the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games.He won the 1,000-Meter Canadian Singles Championship witha time of 5:05.3 and the 10,000-Meter Canadian Singles eventin 56:41.0. At the 1960 Olympics in Rome, Rottman won abronze medal in the 1,000-Meter Canadian Singles in 4:35.87.
FOOD Pastrama Ciorba MititeiMany Israeli Romanians brought with them recipes from the oldcountry. There are more than a dozen Romanian Jewishrestaurants in Jerusalem alone. The Romanian food is famousmainly for its minced meat patties like the garlicky beef mititei,ciorba, a thick and hearty soup based on chicken stock, lemonjuice, boiled beef and carrots, beans, okra and tomatoes.But what is most famous around the world is Romanian pastrami.The word pastrami comes via Yiddish from the Romanian wordpastrama, a term apparently borrowed from Turkish and meaning“cured meat”, and also related to the Romanian verb a pastra (“topreserve”).
ROMANIAN JEWS IN ISRAEL “The town of Focsani represents the crossroads where the highway of Zionism starts“. Raphael Vago “Through Moinesti towards Eretz Israel!”22 years before the Basel congress young people from Moinesti organizedthemselves in preparation for Alia. In 1875 they founded Ishuv Eretz Israel and in1881, 50 families went by foot to Israel. Next year, Moshe David Iancovici went toIsrael and bought land in order to colonize it. In 1882, a group of Romanian Jewsfrom Moinesti, Focsani, and Galati succeeded in building a lasting Jewish settlementin the Galilee. They named their settlement Rosh Pina, "cornerstone," a word foundin Hallel: "You have become my deliverance. The stone that the builders rejected hasbecome the cornerstone." In 1884, Baron Edmund de Rothchild became Rosh Pinassponsor and the settlement became the cornerstone of settlement in the Galilee.One after another, groups of “halutzim” left Romania– the first immigrants havinggone through the ideological and physical training in “Hashomer Hatzair”. They weredetermined to build the best social order in the ancient land. Meir Dizengoff, a leaderof the Hovevei Zion movement in Kishinev, became the first mayor of Tel Aviv.The Jewish communities of Romania played a key role in shaping the face of modernEuropean Jewry in general, bridging the geographical and cultural gaps between theJews of Eastern and Western Europe as well as between Ashkenazim and Sephardim.The Jewish community of Romanian origin was the fourth in Israel before RussianAlia after Perestroika with almost 400,000 Israelis claiming a Romanian origin.They contributed greatly to the creation of the modern state of Israel. They are wellorganized in many associations such as "Organizaţia Evreilor Originari din România"(HOR), ACMEOR Mondial Cultural Association of Romanian Jews, and AMIR Union ofJews born in Romania, and have the most numerous newspapers and reviews in aforeign language in Israel such as “Revista Mea”, "Viaţa Noastră“, "Ultima Oră","Facla“, "Adevărul", "Revista Familiei", "Secolul XX“, "Izvoare“. They also have radioand TV stations in Romanian language. Rosh Pina then and now
LIFE OF A FAMILY ORIGINALLY FROM ROMANIA IN ISRAELRosh Hashana Pesah Family Zoia and Ionatan Gonen From Naharia
LIFE OF ROMANIAN JEWS IN CANADA Between 1890-1914, some 70,000 Jews left Romania mainly for America or France. The emigration was strong among the Jews of Transylvania and especially those of Bessarabia, who fled the persecutions and the pogroms of Czarist Russia. Many came later via Israel and they chose Montreal for the convenience of the French language that most Romanian speak. The Federation of Bukowiner Jews in Montreal was founded two years ago. Many came also to Toronto. Here they are integrated in the general community while preserving some of the traditions from back home. At the turn of the 20th century, Jewish immigrants from Romania wanted to pray together on the Holy Days and to establish a congregation of their own. In 1911 their dream came true and the Congregation proudly dedicated a new building on Bathurst near Dundas, the site where for thirty years the First Romanian Hebrew Congregation Adath Israel, “The Roumainishe Shul”, flourished. It then moved to its present location at Bathurst and Wilson. In Toronto the Romanian Jewish community has a review “Semnalul” published by B’nei Brith-Loja “Dr. W. Filderman”. Mr. Michaelson, the owner of an ice cream parlour, a former theatre player in Romania, was the first in Toronto to produce a Yiddish play. In 1904 he organized an amateur theatrical group. Simcha Jacobovici is an award-winning documentary director and producer. He is also a well published writer and lecturer. Named "Canadas top documentary filmmaker" by the Ryerson Review of Journalism, Jacobovicis past feature documentaries include: Falasha: Exile of the Black Jews (1983), Deadly currents (1991), Hollywoodism: Jews, Movies & the American Dream (1997), Quest for the Lost Tribes (1999), The Struma (2001), James, Brother of Jesus (2003), and Impact of Terror (2004). His parents are from Iasi, Romania, where he unveiled a plaque at a police station where Romanian Jews, including his father were shot.Israel Pincu Lazarovitch, or Irving Layton, was born in 1912 in theRomanian town of Tirgul Neamt. The child, who would one day be nominated forthe Nobel Prize in Literature, achieved early local fame as he was born naturallycircumcised, a sign which orthodox Jews believe is the mark of the Messiah. Today there are many stores run by Romanian Jews that preserve some traditional recipes from back home such as Perl’s, Hermes, and Amadeus as well as other businesses such as Apollo Travel.
THANK YOU! Special thanks to: The Federation of Jewish Communities in Romania, Stephen Roth Institute, Tel Aviv, Romania-Israel portal, The virtual Jewish history tour, International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame, Wikipedia and other internet sites, Clifford Falk, Vasile Rosenberg, Zoia and Ionatan Gonen, Sorin Goldstein, Jeana Svedcenko, for providing pictures, information, and comments.We apologize for any unintentional mistakes and omissions that might be present in this slide show.