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[Page 44]

Notes and Sources

Translated by Jerrold Landau

  1. The settlement of Jews in Podhajce was always free and unrestricted. This may have been due to the fact that it was a city in Podol, and its ownership changed from time to time. The prime sources of information of Jewish Podol are: a) Galicia and its Jews (research into the history of Galicia in the 18th century) by A. Y. Breuer, Mossad Bialik, Jerusalem; b) the Book of Kamenetz-Podolsk and its Environs, published by the Organization of Natives of Kamenetz-Podolsk and its Environs in Israel, Tel Aviv, 5725 (1965); c) The Book of Chronicles of Podolia and the Ancient History of the Jews There, by Menachem Nachum Litinski, Odessa, 5655 (1895). Return

  2. For the first information about Podhajce, see the entry of Dr. Meir Balaban in The Hebrew Encyclopedia (in Russian), edited by Y. L. Katznelson, published in St. Petersburg. Return

  3. Podhajce played an important role in Polish history. In the chronicles of the kingdom, it is listed as a place where well-known commanders of armies and Polish kings encamped. However with regard to the Jews, it was one of the communities where they did not lick from honey. Some of their tribulations are mentioned in books. Return

  4. Even the spelling of the name “Podhajce” went through many incarnations in the Polish language and other languages. The spelling of the cities kept writers busy in Yiddish as well, and even more so in Hebrew. The Jews of Poland did not preserve the principles of original names of cities and towns, and therefore, differences in spelling of the name arose in Hebrew as well. I mention this detail here only in passing, for it does not interest us here to deliberate about the issues of the name. Return

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  1. See: A. A. Harkavi in “New as well as Old”{35} in the addendum to the seventh volume of “History of the Jews” of Tzvi Graetz, chapter 7, page 32. Return

  2. Despite the fact that the book “Masaat Binyamin is a responsa book, it includes folklore material. Therefore, it attracted the attention of wise men more than other books. Return

  3. Zeev Wolf the son of Yehuda Leib was the author of the Slicha that was published in his book “Gefen Yechidit” (Berlin, 1699). Return

  4. According to the Book of Buchach, the Jewish population of Upper Podol became impoverished after the war with Turkey to such a degree that the Polish nobility of the region issued a specific directive to its representatives of the Sejm in Warsaw, asking the king to free the Jews of Tarnopol, Podhajce and other cities of the region from the head tax, for “Divine law commands every person to stand at the right of his fellow”. Return

  5. Podhajce is one of the places for which we did not succeed in identify the names of representatives and activists, despite the fact that the material of the Council of the Four Lands is collected into a special ledger – even though there is no doubt that there were representatives in that council from Podhajce. Return

  6. The Rohatyn Yizkor Book. Return

  7. The Pinkas of the State of Lithuania Return

  8. “Akta Grodzakia”, volume 24, Page 398, number 205. Return

  9. The only source on them is from the books “Matzevet Kodesh” and “Anshei Shem”. Return

  10. Rabbi Binyamin and his book “Masaat Binyamin” are mentioned several times in the book “Luchot Zikaron” of Chaim David Friedberg, second edition, Frankfurt am Main, 5664 (1904). Return

  11. Some of the details can be found in the introduction of his book, published in Constandina. Return

  12. See some details about him in the aforementioned book “Luchot Zikaron”, page 97. Return

  13. hese details are found in the book “History and Activities of People of Renown”, Part 1, by Reb Eliezer Landshaut, Berlin, 5644 (1884). Return

  14. We find details about him as well in the aforementioned book “People of Renown”. Return

  15. Rabbi Tzvi Hirsch took his place in Podhajce. Words of Torah about him are published in various books. Return

  16. See the book “Important Cities of Israel”{36}, volume 6, Brody, by Dr. N. M. Elber, Mossad Harav Kook, 5716 (1956), Jerusalem Return

  17. The Pinkas of the Community of Rohatyn and its Environs (published in Jerusalem by the Organization of Rohatyn Natives), includes information about Podhajce as well, where the emissaries of Shabtai Tzvi succeeding in winning over followers. Return

  18. See the article “The Sabbatean Movement in Poland” by Gershom Sholem, in the book “The Jewish People in Poland”, Jerusalem, 5714 (1954). Return

  19. Much is written about Chaim Malach in the book “History of The Frankist Movement” by Meir Balaban. He is mentioned to some degree in all of the literature about the Sabbateans and Frankists. Return

  20. The name of the city of Podhajce is mentioned in almost all of the many books of Rabbi Yaakov Emden, who fought strongly against the followers of those movements, as he saw in them a serious danger to the existence of Judaism. On account of his hatred of Sabbateanism, he had exaggerated suspicions and boundless zeal. Podhajce had a prime place among the Jewish settlements of Podolia that were attacked by his sharp pen, perhaps because one of his sons served in the rabbinate there for several years. His son supplied him with ample information. Return

  21. See the book “Torah Hakedosha”, page 70, by Yaakov Emden, and see what his written about him in the testimony of Dover Birkenthal of Bolekhow in his book “Divrei Bina”. Return

  22. The book of Archenholtz “England and Italy” (in German, volume 1, page 249). Return

  23. Dr. Falk, the Baal Shem of London, a native of Podhajce, was known also among Christian scholars in the central cities. His name is mentioned along with his photograph in various encyclopedias, in the Jewish Chronicles of London, in the book “Hitkavkut” by Yaakov Emden (Altona, 5532). His name in London was known as a doer of charity and good deeds. He left behind a charitable fund. Return

  24. It should be pointed out that the words of Emden about Dr. Falk come across as hesitant, with the feeling that despite all of his zeal, he was not able to inflict great damage upon him, since Falk has earned for himself an honorable position in London, that grew still greater after his death. Furthermore, in the diary that he left behind, there is not a trace of Sabbateanism. Return

  25. The photograph of the Baal Shem of London is brought down by several historians (including the writer Gershom Bader, a native of Galicia, who spent many years in New York), just as is the photograph of Rabbi Yisrael Baal Shem Tov of Mezhibozh. This was noted by Dr. Avraham Shwadron of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. See also the books “Lachasidim Mizmor” (Jerusalem, 5696 / 1936, page 136). Return

  26. The Kabbalist and Baal Shem Rabbi Moshe David of Podhajce found great support from Rabbi Yehonatan Eibeshitz of Prague, after Rabbi Yaakov Emden lashed out against him in fury and mentioned him negatively in almost all of his books. It would seem that he was forced to leave his native city of Podhajce on account of his Sabbateanism, and to wander from city to city in different countries. Rabbi Moshe David is mentioned in the books of Emden: “Hitavkut”, “Gat Derucha”, and others. Return

  27. Gershom Sholem also searched after the path of Rabbi Moshe David of Podhajce, and mentions him several times in his works, such as his article “Information about Sabbateanism from the Books of the Missionaries of the 18th Century” in “Zion” volume 9, 5704 (1944), page 30. Return

  28. Some details about the time period in which he lived in Poland can be found in the special monograph that the researcher Chaim Warshawski dedicated to Rabbi Moshe David in the Zion Quarterly, year seven, Jerusalem, pages 73-93. We can also find details about him after he left Poland and his native city of Podhajce. Return

  29. See the book “Edut Beyaakov”, page 70. Return

  30. In his aforementioned work, Warshawski mentions the exchange of letters between Rabbi David Strauss the head of the rabbinical court of Fiurda and Rabbi Asher Enzel the head of the rabbinical court of Grabfeld, as well as to Rabbi Yaakov Falk, one of the Parnassim of Altona. Return

  31. The letter of Zusman Sachnovitz sheds light on the visit of Rabbi Moshe David to London. In general, we get the impression from all that was written about Rabbi Moshe David that he suffered great tribulations on account of his being persecuted by his enemies, headed by the zealot Emden. Return

  32. The book of David Kahana, “The History of the Sabbatean Kabbalists and Hassidim” in the series “Even Hatoim” also serves as an important source about he history of Sabbateanism in Podhajce. In it, Podhajce is mentioned in the same breath as the cities that had many Sabbatean followers, including Lvov, Zolokiv, Klatzkov, Rohatyn, Podhajce, and Horodenka. Rabbi Yisachar the Magid of Podhajce, “who was considered to be a great man” is mentioned among the many who were persecuted (page 176). Return

  33. In the section “Even Miluim” in the aforementioned book, Podhajce is mentioned among the other cities that were led astray by Chaim Malach and believed his words with complete faith (according to the book “Edut Yaakov”). Return

  34. In the section “Even Afel” in the aforementioned book, it is written that Frank came to Poland in the year 5516 (1756). He was empty of Talmudic study, and was only expert in the books of the Zohar and writings of the Kabbalists. Return

  35. See the book “Frank and his Followers” by A. Krozhar, that was translated from Polish into Hebrew by Nachum Sokolow with some omissions. In the original Polish book, there are documents and facts that are not in the Hebrew book, that was published in Warsaw in the year 5653 (1893). Return

  36. By surveying the book “Frank and his Followers”, it is possible to get the impression that Frank visited Podhajce often as an official and unofficial guest. He is portrayed as succeeding in his activities there. See page 148 of chapter 4, where he boasts about the followers that he gained there. Return

  37. In the Pinkas of Rohatyn and its Environs, in which Podhajce is mentioned several times, a great deal of space is devoted to Elisha Schorr, whose family was among the first to join the Sabbatean movement. Rohatyn was near Podhajce. Return

  38. In the Hebrew book “Frank and his Followers”, there are scattered facts about the isolated acts of apostasy from among the followers of Frank in Podhajce, without

[Page 46]

    there being a more complete list of the large-scale apostasy of approximately 1,000 followers of Frank. Jewish Podhajce played a recognizable role in that apostasy. Return
  1. See the article of Dr. N. M. Gelber: Three Documents about the History of the Frankist Movement in Poland in “Zion”, year 2, Jerusalem, 5697 (1937), page 326. Return

  2. A significant place is given in the book to Piotr, formerly Nachman the son of Natan Nota of Podhajce. It seems that he as well was not among those who were overly convinced. See chapter 16, page 218. Return

  3. The writer A. Sh. Stein, in his book “And the Fire Left Ashes” – a historical novel about Frank and his community (Alef, Tel Aviv, 5717 (1957) mentions Podhajce countless times. The following is written about Piotr of Podhajce: “Piotr, he is Yerucham the son of Natan Nota of Podhajce, is supported on the branch of a pine tree. He was one of the first believers, one of the leaders and educators of the sect, with a white face, adorned with a black beard, with curly hair, rebellious, with eyes glowing like coals. He cleaved to the master with love and devotion. The spirit of Frank was good to him in that area, in the forest, near his believers. “Take one of the sisters for you Piotr”, Frank said to him, “I see that you are depressed. Depression is a sin, and a mistress is good for depression and black moods. It awakens the influence – why do you stand?… Do I not do such deeds in open before your eyes, in order to actualize all that I prophesy to you?” Yerucham whispers however, “This thing I cannot do…” (Page 277). Return

  4. Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav, in “Likutei Haran”. Return

  5. See the article “Three Documents Regarding the History of the Frankist Movement in Poland” by Dr. N. M. Gelber in “Zion”, year 2, Jerusalem, 5697 (1937). Return

  6. There were rabbis that suspected that Hassidism had a connection to Sabbateanism, so a dispute broke out between Hassidim and its opponents. It would make sense that this fact kept the Jews of Podhajce from joining Hassidim. On the other hand, one should take note of the fact that Podhajce was not far from Tarnopol, from where the light of enlightenment emanated to the entire region from the days of Yosef Perel, and many Jews became captivated by this light. Return

  7. For details about him, see the book “History of People of Renown”, section 1, New York, 5710 (1950), page 2. Return

  8. Throughout the region of Bursztyn, Bobrka, Chodorow, Strelisk, Premishlan, Podhajce and Rohatyn there were no rabbis{37}, but rather decisors of Jewish law. They all received an annual salary ranging from 25 to 120 Florins. Return

  9. See the Polish “Geographic Dictionary” regarding Podhajce. Return

  10. See the article of A. David Polisiuk in “Hamagid”, November 1, 1876. Return

  11. On this principle, the branch in Podhajce appealed through “Hamagid” to all of the branches with the request that each city should sent its leaders to Vienna and “request that only those who go to the Land of our fathers should be helped and supported by the donated money, so that they could purchase fields, plant vineyards, and till the soil there. Then the idea of a settlement in the Land of Israel will move from potentiality to reality” (Hamagid 1882, issue 29, July 26, page 237). Return

  12. See the book “The History of the Zionist Movement in Galicia” by Dr. N. M. Gelber, volume 1, pages 149, 154. Return

  13. See the chapter “Founding of the Machanaim Camp” in the aforementioned book, page 362. Return

  14. “Machzikei Hadas” issue 18, February 22nd , 1907; “Washcod” Polish weekly of the Zionist organization in Galicia; “Neuer Morgen”, Lvov July 11, 1933; “Chawilia” May 15, 1937; various issues of “Hamagid”; various issues of “Hamitzpeh”. Return

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City center


Note in this section, Translator's Footnotes are designated by { } brackets. The footnotes designated by [ ] brackets are the text footnotes.

Translator's Footnotes

  1. In this list of notes, I translate the titles of the books when the translation is meaningful in English. If the title of the book is not meaningful (i.e it is a play on words of the author's name with reference to a biblical verse – as is often the case in books of responsa), I left it in transliteration. Return
  2. Israel here refers to the Jewish People. Return
  3. I.e. official rabbis. Return

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