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First published on JCR-UK: 2003
Latest revision or update to this page: 27 July 2014



Tombstone Inscriptions


First published 1972, New edition published 1996

This volume has been sponsored by The Kessler Foundation
which is largely supported by the JEWISH CHRONICLE

Section 1

Plymouth Old Jewish Cemetery, the Hoe




Abbreviations & Glossary


Inscriptions and Notes

Index of English Names

Index of Hebrew Names with  English Name, where identified

Index of Place Names


[These maps and illustrations are not yet included. FJG]

Map 1. The Jews of Britain (adapted with thanks from M. Gilbert, Jewish History Atlas (1969)

Map 2. Major & minor settlement of Jews in Devon & Cornwall in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries (reprinted from B. Susser, The Jews of South-West England (1993)

Map 3. The site of the Jewish Cemetery on Plymouth Hoe (reprinted from B. Susser, The Jews of South-West England (1993)

Plan of the Plymouth Hoe Jewish Cemetery

Illustration 1. Silver ewer & basin, 1805; Torah cover, 1815,

Illustration 2. The Plymouth Hoe Jewish Cemetery

Illustration 3. Phoebe, daughter of Revd M. Stadthagen

Illustration 4. Revd M. Stadthagen's circumcision cup

Illustration 5. Moses Solomon, 1775 - 1838, [A92]

Illustration 6. The overgrown Plymouth Hoe Jewish Cemetery

Illustration 7. Snuff box presented to Aaron Nathan, 1837

Illustration 8. Silver shield, 1784, in Plymouth Synagogue


I would like to express my appreciation for help in producing this booklet to Dr Harry Greenburgh who drew the maps and has attended to all the details of publication; to Miss Reva Joseph who typed the MS; to Mr Arthur Goldberg for the use of his office facilities; and to the late Dr Cecil Roth who first suggested to me the necessity for a permanent record of the tombstones of a bygone age.

I have compiled this booklet as a labour of love to commemorate my ministry in Plymouth, 1961 1965.

Johannesburg 1972 Rabbi Bernard Susser


This booklet has been out of print for a number of years. There have been many requests for a new edition, and I am happy to comply with the demand. This edition incorporates much new material which has been researched since 1972. I am grateful to: the Kessler Foundation (supported by the Jewish Chronicle) for sponsorship; to an enthusiast whose name escapes me who, of his own initiative, compiled the Place Name index; my son Jacob Harry who word-processed the manuscript; Mr George Rigal for information about insurance policies which he has gleaned at the Guildhall Library, London; and Miss Vivien Grossmann who has compiled the Hebrew Name index, and helped me with the manuscript.

As always, this work would never have seen the light of day without the constant encouragement and support of my wife, Sylvia. The readers and I are truly grateful to her.

London 1996 Rabbi Dr Bernard Susser


AL = V. D. Lipman, 'Plymouth Aliens List, 1798 and 1803', Miscellanies, Jewish Historical Society of England, VI (1962), 187 94.

AM = Anno Mundi.

bat = daughter of.

ben = son of.

DRO = Devon Record Office.

Haver = An honorific title bestowed upon scholarly and respected men.

Isru Hag = The day after Passover, Pentecost or Tabernacles.

Kaddish = Doxology recited for eleven months after, or on the anniversary of, the death of one's parents or other near relatives.

KZ = The initial letters of the phrase kohen zedek (= righteous priest), often appended to the Jewish name of a priest, and giving rise to the surname 'Katz'.

Meshivat Nefesh = Jewish Friendly Society.

Ohel = Chapel in the cemetery for laying out the dead.

Omer = Period of forty nine days between Passover and Pentecost.

Parnas & Manhig = President of a Congregation.

PCC = Probate Court of Canterbury.

PHC = Plymouth Hebrew Congregation.

Pinkas = Necrology.

Plymouth Dock = The modern town of Devonport.

Rosh Hodesh = The first day or days of the Jewish month, a minor festival.

SGL = The initial letters of the phrase segan leviyah (= Levitical excellence), often appended to the Jewish name of a Levite, and giving rise to the surname 'Segal'.

Shavuot = Jewish festival of Pentecost, occurring in May/June.

Succot = Jewish festival of Tabernacles, occurring in October.

T.C. = Town Councillor.

TFP = Trewman's Exeter Flying Post.

Torani = A Torah scholar.

VE = Used instead of AD, to avoid the theological implications of Anno Domini. It might stand for Variant or Vulgar (in the sense of 'widely used') Era.

Yahrzeit = Anniversary of death. Children of the deceased usually fast on this day and recite kaddish.

Yeshivah = College of Talmudical study.

z"l = May his memory be for a blessing.

zts"l = May the memory of the righteous be for a blessing.


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