Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Who am I?

And yes, the picture contains a clue, if you are eagle-eyed. A little arcane, but a genuine clue.


  1. What's the clue? "Columbus"? The neck beard?

  2. The face looks so familiar (someone I've met once, perhaps?), but I can't figure out who it is.

    Oh, Murray Schaum? The guy who was mashgiach ruchani at YCT about 10 years ago, and now does, what, physical therapy?

  3. Avram Geiger on purim

  4. Have you been photo shopping a kipa?

  5. Good guesses. Are we ready for the answer?

  6. Not sure if anyone is paying attention anymore.

    At any rate, this man is Moses Mendelssohn of Hamburg, known chiefly for his collection of poems and essays פני תבל - מוסר השכל, published after his death. His actual surname was Frankfurter, and he was R. Samson Raphael Hirsch's maternal uncle.

    The clue was indeed Columbus - all of his publications were in journals and magazines, but his one published book was a Hebrew translation of J. H. Campe's "Columbus, or, The discovery of America," as מציאת הארץ החדשה.

    1. if for the translation of J. H. Campe's "Columbus, or, The discovery of America, it could of been Mordecai Aaron Guenzburg who translated the same book sixteen years later, with the name גלות הארץ החדשה.

  7. By the way, I came across an amusing anecdote. One of the original Moses Mendelssohn's sons was involved in trying to gather together all of his father's writings for publication (circa 1840). The man he charged with the task of editing the material was Heimann Jolowicz (who later moved to England and wrote under the name "Heinrich," and wrote in English). In any case, so Mendelssohn's son advertised in newspapers asking anyone to send anything in Hebrew written by his father, he would pay. So someone sent him some poems written by none other than Moses Mendelssohn of Hamburg, who was still very much alive. Jolowicz realized what had happened, by Mendelssohn's own son had no idea.



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