Rabbinical Profiles(1)

Surnames I & J

In most instances, if one clicks on the portrait of a minister below, an enlaged image will appear in a new window.

Rabbi Jonah Indech
(25 December 1908 - 2 January 1999)

Warsaw-born Rev. (later Rabbi) Indech (m. Sarah Weisfogel in 1932), the son of Rabbi Yehudah Leib Indech, a Gerer Chasid, came to London with his family before World War I. He studied at Etz Chaim yeshivah and at Trinity College of Music. From 1929 he taught at the newly established Jewish Secondary School, forerunner of the Hasmonean schools, and became head of the North London Talmud Torah. He also served as chazan of the Adath Yisroel Synagogue, north London. During the war he helped organise an evacuee community at Goring-by-Sea, West Sussex, and later given ministerial status by the Chief Rabbi, served a number of other evacuee communities: the Buxton Hebrew Congregation, Derbyshire; the Newbury and District Hebrew Congregation, Berkshire (from at least 1943 until about 1944); and the Amersham United Synagogue Membership Group, Buckinghamshire (from April 1944 until December 1945). He was then briefly a minister in London, and superintendent of the classes at the Hampstead Garden Synagogue. In early 1947. Rev. Indech was appointed to the Bournemouth Hebrew Congregation initially as its sole minister. He was to serve in Bournemouth for over 27 years and was a significant figure in the development of the post war community. He chaired the Zionist society on his arrival and co-founded the local branch of the Council of Christians and Jews. In 1955 he obtained semicha from Etz Chaim yeshiva (as a mature student, his studies having been disrupted by the war). Rabbi Indech was instrumental in the establishment of the Hannah Levy residential home in Bournemouth. He was appointed emeritus minister on his retirement in 1974 and continued to live in Bournemouth where he died. (Jewish Chronicle obituary 5 February 1999; "The Rabbi in the Green Jacket" 2015 by Vivien & Deborah Samson, p.34; and Jewish Year Book listings.)

Rabbi Chaim N. Ingram, BA, OAM
(b. 1952)

London-born Rabbi Ingram (m. Judith, a Jews' College graduate and a qualified teacher), studied at the University of York (where he graduated with a with BA degree in music),  Yeshivat Dvar Yerushalayim in Israel and Jews' College (studied chazanut). He had served as choirmaster at West Ham and Upton Park Synagogue, east London. He served as chazan of Cricklewood Synagogue, northwest London (1980-1982) and from 1982 as assistant rabbi of the Newcastle United Hebrew Congregation, Newcastle upon Tyne, until 1986. He served as minister, then rabbi, of the Leicester Hebrew Congregation (1986-1992). In 1992 Rabbi Ingram moved to Australia where he was appointed principal chazan, then associate rabbi, at Sydney's Central Synagogue; rabbi of The Caro Synagogue, Bondi and at Surfers Central Synagogue on Queensland's Gold Coast. He later became honorary rabbi of Sydney's Jewish Centre On Ageing and a non-resident rabbi of the Adelaide Hebrew Congregation. In 2019 Rabbi Ingram was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for his work in the Jewish Community. (Jewish Year Book listings, Jewish Chronicle reports and profile on Rabbi Chaim Ingram's website.)

Rev. Moses Isaac
(1728 - 1790)

Rev. Moses Isaac (m. Dikah) was born in Mezeritz, Poland, and moved to Frankfurt, Germany, and then to Britain in 1748. He was appointed beadle, teacher and mohel of Plymouth Hebrew Congregation, Devon, in about 1778 and served the community until his death. Both Rev. Isaac and his wife are buried in the Plymouth Hoe Old Jews' Burial Ground. (Helen Fry's The Jews of Plymouth, 2015, p.42.)

Nahman ben Isaac - see under Nahman.

Rev. David Isaacs
(d. 1858)

Rev. Isaacs served served as reader of the Nottingham Hebrew Congregation in about 1856. (Eight Hundred Years - The Story of Nottingham's Jews (1998) by Nelson Fisher.)

Rev. Prof. David Myer Isaacs
(c.1810 - 1 May 1879)

Prof. Isaacs was born in Leywarden, Holland, came to Britain as a child but went back to Holland to attend Leyden University. Following his return to Britain, he studied for ten years with Chief Rabbi Solomon Hirschell and also attended the University of London, from where he obtained a degree. His first ministerial appointment was as minister of the Bristol Hebrew Congregation (1833-1835). He then served as minister of the Liverpool Old Hebrew Congregation (1836-1849) and the Liverpool New Hebrew Congregation (1849-1858), spending much of the later period divided his time between Liverpool and Manchester, before being appointed as minister of the Manchester Great Synagogue in 1858. He was considered one of the most remarkable preachers and orators in his day. (Jews in Bristol (1997) by J. Samuel, pp.83/4 and Palgrave Dictionary of Anglo-Jewish History (2011) by W. Rubinstein (ed.) and M.A. Jolles and H. L. Rubinstein (ass. eds.), p.453.)

Rev. Gatchell Isaacs
(12 February 1863-17 April 1933)

Born in Kolo, Poland, Rev. G. Isaacs, came to England as an infant and was educated at the Westminster Jews' Free School, where he was to teach for some 20 years. Rev Isaacs served as minister of the newly-formed South Hackney Synagogue, now Hackney & East London Synagogue from about 1890 until 1928. He was involved in all aspects of social work in Hackney and was visitor to Pentonville prison for over a quarter of a century. On retirement, he was appointed emeritus minister of the congregation. Rev Isaacs collapsed and died at Hendon Synagogue having given the sermon on the seventh day of Passover. He is buried at Willesden cemetery. (Jewish Year Book listings and Jewish Chronicle obituary 21 April 1933.)

Rev. Harris Isaacs
(b. c.1786)

Rev. H. Isaacs (m. Caroline Isaacs of Konigsberg, 1820) served as reader and shochet for the Ipswich Synagogue, Suffolk from 1817 until the 1840s or early 1850s. There are a number of conflicting reports regarding the life and identity of Rev. Isaacs, which are discussed in detail here in the British Genealogy website. It is known that in 1844, his wife Caroline journeyed to Ottoman Palestine, and died in Joppa (Jaffa) on route to Jerusalem, although it is unclear whether Rev. Isaacs had accompanied her. One source (C. Roth) says that In 1849 Rev. Harris  announced his intention to settle in Palestine, and was given letters of commendation from Sir Moses Montefiore and others, as well as a flattering complimentary address from the Mayor and Corporation of Ipswich. In the end, however, influenced by the persuasion of his friends, he decided to abandon his proposed "aliyah" and remained in Ipswich, continuing to occupy his former post and to maintain a school which he conducted in Ipswich. Another source (R. Halliday and B. Susser) says that this occurred 1842 and that in 1844, Rev. Isaacs did accompany his wife to Palestine. If he did, it is not known whether he remained in Palestine or returned to Britain.  (British Genealogy website; The Rise of Provincial Jewry by Cecil Roth, 1950; and Jewish Chronicle report.)

Rev. Jacob Isaacs

Rev. Jacob Isaacs was shochet of Brighton Hebrew Congregation, Sussex, from about 1831 until about 1835 and by 1846 was minister of York Street Synagogue, Sydney, Australia. (Brighton Jewry 250 - An anthology of the Brighton & Hove Jewish Community 1766-2016 and Jewish Chronicle report of 28 August 1846.)

Rev. Judah Isaacs

Polish-born Rev. Judah Isaacs (m. Leah) came to Britain in the 1830s and served as reader and shochet at the Canterbury Synagogue, Kent, possibly from the 1840s until the 1870s. His year of birth is a bit of a mystery, as his age was given as 47 in the 1861 census (pruducing a year of birth of about 1814) and 63 in the 1971 census (producing a year of birth of about 1908). (Census results and Jewish Directory for 1874.)

Rev. M. Isaacs

Rev. M. Isaacs served as minister of York Synagogue from at least 1896 until about 1899. It is possible but unlikely that he is the Rev. Moses David Isaacs who served in Chatham. (Jewish Year Book listings.)

Rev. Michael Isaacs

Rev. Michael Isaacs, the a son of Rev. Samuel Isaacs of Stoke-on-Trent, married Miss B. Wykansky, the daughter of Rev. Simon Wykansky of Plymouth in 1931. His first known post was at Bridgend Synagogue, South Wales prior to 1928, and was then chazan, shochet and teacher to Wolverhampton Hebrew Congregation from 1928 until 1932. He served as reader of South Shields Synagogue, Co. Durham (c.1933-c.1936), as minister of the Dundee Hebrew Congregation, Scotland (c.1936-c.1945), as minister-reader-shochet of the Llandudno Hebrew Congregation, North Wales (c.1946) and was then appointed chazan, shochet, mohel and teacher to the Swansea Hebrew Congregation, South Wales (c.1946-c.1947), later serving as minister of the Margate Hebrew Congregation, Kent, (c.1949-1950). He was the brother of Rev. Monty Isaacs and Rev. Phillip Isaacs. (Jewish Year Book listings and various Jewish Chronicle various articles, including a profile 30 June 1950.)

Rev. Monty Isaacs

Rev. Monty Isaacs (m. Ettie Myers of Gateshead), a son of Rev. Samuel Isaacs of Stoke-on-Trent, served as minister of the Darlington Hebrew Congregation (c.1932-1933) before moving to the Stoke-on-Trent Hebrew Congregation (1933-c.1945), where he initially served as headmaster of the religious classes and subsequently (from about 1936) becoming minister, a post previously held by his late father. He then emigrated to the USA where he at first took up a post of minister in Massachusetts and was a rabbi in Los Angeles. By 1955 Rev. Isaacs had become a poultry farmer in California, and discussed his transition from Anglo-Jewish minister to Californian farmer in an interview to the Jewish Chronicle in 1955. He was the brother of Rev. Michael Isaacs and Rev. Phillip Isaacs. (Jewish Chronicle press reports and Jewish Year Book listings.)

Rev. Moses David Isaacs
(b. c.1870)

Rev. Moses David Isaacs (m. Jessie, daughter of Rev. Moses Bregman of Northampton) served as minister of the Magnus Memorial Synagogue, Chatham, Kent, from about 1898 until about 1903. It is possible but unlikely that he is the Rev. M. Isaacs who served in York. (Jolles's Encyclopaedia; Jewish Year Book listings; and Jewish Chronicle reports.)

Rev. Nathan Isaacs

Rev. N. Isaacs served as minister of the Norwich Hebrew Congregation, Norfolk from about 1917 to about 1919. (Jewish Year Book Listings.)

Rev. Phillip Isaacs
Rev. Phillip Isaacs

Rev. Phillip Isaacs
(22 October 1902 - 1979)

Polish-born Rev. Phillip (or Philip) Isaacs, a son of Rev. Samuel Isaacs, studied at Etz Chaim Yeshiva, London, and is believed to be the same Rev. P. Isaacs who served as reader, shochet, teacher and president at Whitley Bay Hebrew Congregation from 1923 to about 1926. Rev. Phillip Isaacs (m. Sarah Przedborski - d.1984) was the long-serving minister of the Coventry Hebrew Congregation (c.1926-1950, some 23 Years). During this period, he was also a visiting minister to the Northampton Hebrew Congregation, where he taught Hebrew and conducted funerals. His next appointment was as the minister, reader, teacher and shochet of the Reading Hebrew Congregation (1950-1959). He then served as minister, shochet and teacher at the Southampton Hebrew Congregation (1959-1969) until his retirement. During his time in Southampton, Rev Isaacs advised the main shipping lines on kosher catering. In the 1970s, he was resident minister at the Normandie Hotel, Bournemouth. He was the brother of Rev. Michael Isaacs and Rev. Monty Isaacs. (Portrait of a Community - Reading Synagogue 1900-2000; Jewish Year Book listings; and Jewish Chronicle press reports.)

Rev. Samuel Isaacs
(c.1878 - 27 March 1933)

Rev. Samuel Isaacs (m. Leah) served as minister of the Stoke-on-Trent Hebrew Congregation (c.1927-1933). He died in office and is buried at the Jewish cemetery in Stoke. He was the father of Rev. Michael Isaacs and Rev. Phillip Isaacs, as well as Rev. Monty Isaacs, who succeeded him as minister in Stoke. (Jewish Chronicle press reports.)

Rev. Simeon Isaacs
(December 1912 - 17 May 1954)

London-born Rev. Isaacs, educated at Etz Chaim Yeshiva, Jews' College and University of London. In 1934 he took up a post of minister under the United Synagogue to the Boys Clubs. He also served as minister of Borough Synagogue, London (date not known), the South East London Associate Synagogue, London (late 1930s-c.1947) and the Central Synagogue, Great Portland Street, London (c.1947-c.1954). He was also senior Jewish chaplain to the British Armed Forces in the Central Mediterranean during World War II, his service also taking him to Northern Ireland and India. He tragically drowned in the sea off Clapton while on holiday with his wife. A students room at Jews' College was named after him. (Jewish Year Book listings, and Who's Who, Jewish Chronicle obituary 21 May 1954 and various reports.)

Rev. Michael R. Isdale

Rev. Isdale (m. Tanya), after studying at Jews' College and at the Royal Academy of Music, received his Chazanut Diploma in 1976. He served as reader at the Yeshurun Hebrew Congregation, Gately, Manchester (c.1999-c.2002), and from 2002 until present (June 2021), he has been chazan of the South Manchester Synagogue (the Bowden Synagogue). (Jewish Year Book listings; profile on Bowden Synagogue website.)

Rev. Jacob Israelstam
(September 1893 - 20 December 1973)

Born in Libau (today Liepaja, a port city on Latvia’s west coast), Rev. Israelstam (m. Elsie Edith) was a student at Jews' College London and Hollier Scholar in Hebrew at London University. He served as minister of the Merthyr Tydfil Hebrew Congregation, south Wales (1917-1920) and was then minister of the Bradford Hebrew Congregation, Yorkshire, for over 40 years, from 1920 until his retirement in 1962. During that period he spent about one year away, in 1931, when he was appointed warden of the Jews' College Hostel in London. Rev. Israelstam translated and edited Talmud and Midrash for compilations published by the Soncino press, and was the joint editor of an annotated edition of the Routledge machzor. Following his retirement, he became an active member of Hampstead Synagogue, London. Rev. Israelstam was well regarded by his colleagues and was president of the Union of Anglo-Jewish Preachers. He is buried at Bushey cemetery. (Jewish Chronicle reports and obituary 28 December 1973; Jewish Year Book listings.)

Hayyim (Chaim) Issachar
(c.1774 - 7 August 1854)

Hayyim Issachar (or Issacher) served as beadle to the Plymouth Hebrew Congregation, Devon, from about 1810 (or 1813) to 1830. He was required to supervise any matters relating to kosher food and apparently also acted as a shochet, as is was reported that the congregation sent him to London on Sunday, 27 February 1814, to be re-examined by Chief Rabbi Solomon Hirschell as to his skills as a shochet. (The Congregation allowed him eight pounds for the expense of the trip.) He was also required to keep a register book with details of all the children (both male and female), a memorial of all weddings, and a memorial of all deaths. He also traded locally as a slop-seller (seller of cheap, ready-made clothes) and was well known for his piety and learning. His basic salary in 1816 was £50 per annum. (Rabbi B. Susser's thesis, "The Jews of South-West England", Chapter 6; Helen Fry's "The Jews of Plymouth", pp.42/3.)

Mr. Cecil Jackson
(c.1914 - February 1990)

Cecil Jackson (m. Mimi), a resident in Norwich, became lay reader of the Norwich Hebrew Congregation, Norfolk (1983-1887) on Rev. Harry Levine's retirement and served the community with great dignity and dedication for five years. (Jewish Chronicle obituary of 2 March 1990; Congregation's website.)

Rabbi Edward (Eddie) Leo Jackson
(b. 28 October 1936)

Rabbi Jackson (m. Frankie Steiner) was born in Cork, in the Irish Free State (now the Republic of Ireland) and is the great grandson of Rev. Myer Elyan, the first minister of the Cork Hebrew Congregation. He studied at Jews' College, London and received semicha from Chief Rabbi Lord Jakobovitz in 1971. Rabbi Jackson began his ministerial career as assistant minister of Hampstead Synagogue, London (1958-1961). He then served as minister at Kingston Surbiton and District Synagogue, southwest London, (1961-1972), then moved to Kenton Synagogue, northwest London (1972-1980), and served, for 19 years, as Rabbi of Hampstead Garden Suburb Synagogue (1980-1998). He was a member of the Chief Rabbi's Cabinet; a member of the Committee of the Conference of European Rabbis; chairman of the Jewish Marriage Council; the creator and organiser of the United Synagogue Inter-Synagogue Quiz; and chaplain to Wandsworth and Pentonville Prisons. Rabbi Jackson and his wife retired to Netanya, Israel in 1999, but at the request of Chief Rabbi Sacks, he served for 18 months as rabbi of the Ohel Leah Synagogue in Hong Kong. Also at various points he assisted communities in the UK as a temporary minister, including short stints back at Kenton Synagogue in 2001, Western Marble Arch Synagogue in 2003, Radlett Synagogue in 2005 and the Bournemouth Hebrew Congregation in 2007. Rabbi Jackson was the rabbi at the congregation of Young Israel of North Netanya (YINN) from 2013 until he retired in August 2016 and was appointed their emeritus rabbi, later moving to Shoresh in the Jerusalem Hills. (Jewish Chronice reports, Jewish Year Book Who's Who and profile on YINN website.)

Rev. Harry M. Jacobi

Served both a Traditional congregation (as a lay minister) and Non-Orthodox congregations. See under Rev. Harry M. Jacobi in Non-Orthodox section.

Rev. Aaron Jacobs
(1790 - 27 February 1844)

Polish-born Rev. Aaron Jacobs was a resident of Oxford. Although he was a shopkeeper in the city, he is believed to have also acted in a ministerial capacity (the local newspaper referring to him as a rabbi and the community's sefer torah was in his home) and probably served as reader and shochet of the Oxford Hebrew Congregation, from about 1842 until February 1844, when he, together with his elder daughter, Rebecca, died in a fire which engulfed his home and shop. He was the father of Rev. Nathan Jacobs. He was buried in the Brady Street (North Street) Cemetery, Mile End, London. (Fire in Oxford - report of Fire and Inquest in Jackson's Oxford Journal, 2 March 1844; "Gone to blazes in Oxford" by Riva Hill -Shemot March 2004)

Rev. Abraham Charles Jacobs
(c.1840 - 4 February 1915)

London-born Rev. Jacobs (m. Rachel) was educated at Jews' Free School and privately, and as a child led services at the Beth Hamidrash, Aldgate, and from Bar Mitzvah, he was Baal Koreh for services held at the home of Henry Moses, of Trinity Square, London. Having served a number of provincial communities as a visiting minister, in 1868 Rev. Jacobs was appointed shochet, reader and teacher at the Brighton Hebrew Congregation, Sussex, which role developed into that of minister. He died in office 47 years later. Rev. Jacobs played a leading role in the building of the Middle Street synagogue in 1875, and prided himself on "his knack of begging for his beloved synagogue" - resulting in the synagogue's "exquisitely sumptious interior," still recognised today as "Brighton's most important interior after the Royal Pavilion". He was for 24 years honorary secretary to the Jewish Convalescent Home in Brighton and a leading figure for the annual Hospital Collections. Much respected in the wider community, the Chief Rabbi addressed Rev. Jacobs's funeral at Ditchling Road cemetery, Brighton. (Jewish Chronicle obituary 12 February 2015.)

Rev. Benjamin Jacobs

Rev. B. Jacobs served as short term assistant reader and teacher to the Hull Hebrew Congregation at Robinson Row, Hull, during the early 1850s. (Jolles's Encyclopaedia of Chazanim, etc., 2024 edition.)

Rev. David Jacobs
(c.1868 - 17 January 1951)

Warsaw-born, Rev. D. Jacobs (m. Bertha, daughter of Rabbi Haimsohn - d.1949) was educated at Volozhin yeshiva where he was taught by rabbis Berlin and Soloveitchik and came to Britain in 1891. He was minister of Pontypridd Synagogue, South Wales (until 1895) and at Stroud Synagogue, Gloucestershire (1895-1896). Rev. Jacobs was senior teacher at New Dalston Synagogue, north London, for six years and led services on occasion at a number of London synagogues including the Great, Dalston, New Dalston, Finsbury Park and East London synagogues. In 1903 he accepted as call from the Plymouth Hebrew Congregation, Devon, to serve as its minister and from 1914 he served at South Portland Street Synagogue, Glasgow. From 1932 Rev. Jacobs set up his own Hebrew and religion school in Glasgow. He is buried at Glenduffhill cemetery. He was the father of Rev. Nathaniel Jacobs. (Jewish Chronicle profile and photo 28 August 1903; obituary 26 January 1951; and various reports.)

Rabbi Dr. Julian Godfrey Jacobs
(6 March 1934 - 7 March 2006)

London-born Rabbi Jacobs, Ma, PhD, (m. Margaret Harris, 1975) served as assistant minister to Dayan Meyer Steinberg at Brixton Synagogue (c.1956-c.1961) and as minister of Richmond Synagogue, London (c.1961-c.1970). He then combined a full-time post as a Jewish studies teacher at the Jewish Free School, London, with a part-time ministry at West Hackney Synagogue, London (c.1972-c.1976) and Barking & Becontree Synagogue, London (c.1976-c.1979). He obtained semicha in 1980, and became rabbi at the Blackpool United Hebrew Congregation (1979-1982), the Liverpool Old Hebrew Congregation (mid-1980s) and Ealing Synagogue, London (late 1980s-c.1990). Rabbi Jacobs was the author of four books on religious themes. He retired to Jerusalem, Israel, in 1998, where he died. (Jewish Year Book Who's Who 2006 and listings and Jewish Chronicle obituary, 31 March 2006.)

Rabbi Dr. Louis Jacobs CBE
(17 July 1920 - 1 July 2006)

Manchester-born Rabbi Dr. Jacobs, BA, PhD, HDHL, HLiD, was a leading UK rabbi who was awarded a CBE in 1990. He studied at Manchester Yeshiva, from where he received semicha, and later at the Kolel in Gateshead. Rabbi Jacobs served as rabbi of the Manchester Central Synagogue (1948-c.1954), minister / preacher of the New West End Synagogue, London (1954-1959) and Tutor & Lecturer at Jews' College, London (1959-1962) before his break with the Orthodox Jewish establishment in 1962 in what was referred to as "The Jacobs Affair". Later, in 1964, he, together with a number of former congregants, founded the New London Synagogue, which subsequently became the parent and founding synagogue of UK's Masorti movement. Rabbi Jacobs served as the synagogue's senior minister (1964-2000 and again briefly in 2005). (https://louisjacobs.org/ and "Whos Who" entries in Jewish Year Books.)

Rev. M. Jacobs

Rev. M. Jacobs was the reader at the Jersey Old Hebrew Congregation, St. Helier, Jersey, Channel Islands,  in 1850. (Jewish Chronicle report of 9 May 1850.)

Rev. Michael Joseph Jacobs
Rev. Jacobs served as reader of Sheffield Hebrew Congregation from at least 1870 until at least 1874 and officiated at the opening of the congregation's new synagogue in North Church Street in 1872. However, it appears that in 1873 he became second reader, as well as shochet and collector, when the congregation appointed the more melodious Rev. Samuel Melinek as first reader for its new synagogue (possibly only for a short period), about which Rev. Jacobs complained to Chief Rabbi Nathan Adler but was told 'to live amicably with [Rev. Melinek], in brotherhood and friendship, as is proper." (Sheffield Jewry by Armin Krausz (1980); and the Jewish Directory of 1874.)

Rev. Nathan Jacobs
Rev. N. Jacobs

Rev. Nathan Jacobs
(c.1826 - 12 May 1890)

Polish-born Rev. N. Jacobs was the son of Rev. Aaron Jacobs. Following his father's death in 1844, Rev. Jacobs (m. Hannah Wolf), who had only recently arrived in Britain, was appointed minister and shochet of the Oxford Hebrew Congregation (1844-1857). In 1858 he became the first minister appointed by the Cardiff Hebrew Congregation and he participated in the service for the opening of the East Terrace synagogue that year. He gave regular sermons in English and was responsible for establishing a short-lived Jewish school in Cardiff, providing both secular and religious instruction. Funding issues regarding the school may have contributed to Rev. Jacobs leaving Cardiff in 1871. In 1872 he volunteered to assist the high holy day services at the Newport Hebrew Congregation, which later elected him as an honorary member for the support he gave to the congregation over several years. He later moved to Bath where he was instrumental in keeping together the small Jewish community, again in a voluntary capacity. He is buried at Bath's Jewish cemetery (list of burials). He was uncle of the Rev. B. Wolff of Birmingham and Mr. Jacob Wolff, Headmaster of the Westminster Jews' Free School. (Jewish Chronicle funeral report 16 May 1890 and various other reports; The Jews of Oxford (1992) by D.M. Lewis; The Jews of South Wales (1993) edited by U.R.Q. Henriques, p.24; Hill, Reva - "Gone to blazes in Oxford" by Reva Hill - Shemot March 2004.)

Rev. Nathaniel Jacobs

Stroud-born Rev. Nathaniel Jacobs served both orthodox and non-orthodox congregations. See under Rev. Nathaniel Jacobs, BA in non-Orthodox section.

Rev. Alexander C. Jaffe
Rev. S. Jacobs
aged 19 (1877)

Rev. Solomon Jacobs
(9 July 1861 - 6 August 1920)

Sheffield born, Rev. Jacobs (m. Edith Cohen in Birmingham in 1886) was educated at Aria College, Portsea, Portsmouth, and taught at the Manchester Jews' School. He served as the first minister of the Newcastle United Hebrew Congregation (the Leazes Park Road Synagogue) from 1880 to 1886, when he left the congregation to take up a post in Jamiaca. In 1900 he visited London before taking up the post of minister at the Holy Blossoms Synagogue, Toronto, Canada - then an Orthodox congregation which had just built a Cathedral-style synagogue. Rev. Jacobs was called upon at times to represent the largely immigrant Canadian Jewish community in wider civic life. He died in office in 1920. ("Jacobs, Solomon", in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Stephen A. Spiesman, vol. 14, University of Toronto/Université Laval;The Jewish Communities of North-East England by Lewis Olsover (1980); Service and Scandal by Daniel Appleby (2013), p.53.) [Photograph on right - courtesy Ontario Jewish Archives.]

Rev. W. Jacobs
(b. 1879)

Polish-born Rev. Jacobs (m. Dora) served as minister of the Wrexham Hebrew Congregation, north Wales (c.1910-c.1911), the Pontypridd Hebrew Congregation, south Wales (c.1912) and the Northampton Hebrew Congregation (1914-1918). In December 1918 Rev. Jacobs was appointed as reader to the newly-formed Eastbourne Hebrew Congregation, Sussex and he served there until 1922. (Jewish Year Book listings; A Short History of the Jews of Northampton by Michael Jolles, Appendix 3; Eastbourne congregation website; and Census return for England and Wales 1911.)

Rabbi Yossi Jacobs
(b. 1981)

Born in Glasgow, Rabbi Jacobs (m. Rochel in California) is the son of Rabbi Chaim Jacobs of Glasgow. Educated at Manchester Jewish Grammar School, he then studied at Lubavitch yeshivot in Toronto, Canada and obtained semicha and a BA in Hebrew in North America. He became temporary minister at Netherlee and Clarkston Hebrew Congregation, Glasgow. Rabbi Jacobs was appointed assistant minister of Birmingham Hebrew Congregation, Singers Hill in 2005, and then senior minister from December 2007 to present (July 2022). Rabbi Jacobs is director of Jewish education at the local King David School, is a member of the Birmingham Faith Leaders Group and serves as chaplain to Birmingham AJEX. (Jewish Telegraph online interview.)

Rev. J. Jacobsohn

Rev. J. Jacobson of Kiev was announced to have been appointed the first chazan of Shaw Street Synagogue, Liverpool, but he seems either to have served for only a short period or did not take up the position. (Jewish Chronicle notice of 16 August 1907.)

Rev. Raphael Jacobsohn

Prussia-born Rev. Jacobsohn lived in Glasgow before serving as shochet and reader to the Cheltenham Hebrew Congregation, Gloucestershire, from 1849 until 1854 (The Hebrew Community of Cheltenham, Gloucester and Stroud by Brian Torode (1989), p.34 and Appendix.)

L. Jafe

Mr. L. Jafe served as reader of the Camden Street Synagogue, Dublin, from at least 1896 until about 1901. (Jewish Year Book listings.)

Rev. Alexander C. Jaffe
Rev. A.C. Jaffe
circa. 1940

Rev. Alexander C. Jaffe
(8 September 1921 - 25 July 1999)

Manchester-born Rev. Jaffe (m. June Glover, 1957) studied at Manchester Talmudic College and Yeshiva Etz Chaim, London. His first communal post was as minister of the Warsaw Synagogue, Manchester, which he left to become a minister of the St. Annes Hebrew Congregation (1940 to c.1943). He acted as a visiting chaplain to Kirkham and Padgate RAF camps. Following the war, he served as minister of two Reform congregations, Southport New Synagogue (now Southport & District Reform Synagogue) (c.1949-c.1952) and Wimbledon and District Synagogue (now The Wimbledon Synagogue) (1952-c.1953). He then settled in Belfast where he was involved extensively in communal affairs and, as a member of the Belfast Hebrew Congregation, he frequently undertook ministerial duties (in a voluntary capacity when the community was without a resudent minister). See also Press Cuttings relating to Rev. Jaffe. (Jewish Year Book listings; press reports and communication from family.)

Rev. S. (or E.) Jaffe

Rev. S. Jaffe, who had briefly assisted at Grimsby Synagogue, was in 1890 appointed minister at St. Leonard's, Hastings, Sussex. In 1892 it was reported Rev. E. Jaffe conducted High Holy day services at Beaufort College, St. Leonards, for residents and visitors - it is assumed this is the same Rev. Jaffe. Rev. E. Jaffe was then minister in Plymouth Hebrew Congregation, Devon, from 1893 until at least 1895. By 1897 a Rev. E Jaffe was minister in Kimberley, South Africa and from about 1899 in Pretoria. He served the Pretoria Hebrew Congregation through the Boer War until about 1902 when, according to a congregational historian, his handwriting no longer features on the synagogue's ketubot. His subsequent career is unknown. He may be the same person as Rev. S. Jaffe who served as reader to the Barrow-in-Furness Hebrew Congregation (then in Lancashire) from 1904 until at least 1907. (Various Jewish Chronicle reports; Newsletter No. 33 - JewishGen kehilalinks-Kimberley; "The Jews of Plymouth" by Helen Fry.)

Rabbi Louis (or Leiser) Jakob

Born in Tarnow, Poland, Rev. Jakob (m. Sylvia Fishman) studied at Jews' College London. He served as part-time minister of the newly-established Mill Hill & District Hebrew Congregation, London (1949-1953) and was minister at the St. Annes Hebrew Congregation, Lancashire (c.1955-1958). In 1958 he became minister in Tokyo, Japan, where he established or helped develop a small religion class, nursery and provision for shechita. By 1960 he had returned to Britain and was briefly honorary minister at West Hackney Synagogue, North London (c.1960-c.1961). He was appointed head of the Hebrew classes at the Yeshurun Synagogue, Edgware, 1962. By 1975, as Rabbi Jakob, he was serving the community at La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA. (History of the Mill Hill congregation, on its website, and Jewish Year Book listings. A family engagement announcement in the Jewish Chronicle in 1975 indicates the connection between Rabbi Jakob in USA and the Fishman family.)

Chief Rabbi Lord Jakobovits

Chief Rabbi Lord Immanuel Jakobovits
(8 February 1921 - 31 October 1999)

Born in Koenigsberg, Germany (now Kaliningrad, Russia), where his father, Dr Julius Jakobovits was rabbi, he came to England in 1936 and studied at Jews' College and Etz Chaim yeshiva where he received semicha in 1947, and a BA and, later in 1955), a doctorate from the University of London. His first ministerial appointment was as temporary minister of Brondesbury Synagogue (1941-1944), and was minister of the South East London Synagogue (1944-1947) and the bombed-out Great Synagogue, Dukes Place, London, (1947-1949), where he undertook mainly pastoral duties. Rabbi Jakobovits (m. Amelie, daughter of Rabbi Dr Elie Munk of Paris in 1949) was then installed as Chief Rabbi of Ireland (1949-1958), filling a post vacant since the departure of his predecessor, Chief Rabbi Herzog, in 1936. In March 1959 he was inducted as founding rabbi of Fifth Avenue Synagogue, New York (1959-1967) and in 1967 he was appointed Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the British Commonwealth. Chief Rabbi Jakobovits was knighted in 1981 and received a peerage in 1988, becoming the first rabbi to enter the House of Lords He was also considered to have had a very special relationship with prime minister Margaret Thatcher during her period in office. He retired as Chief Rabbi in 1991. Described by Sir Isaiah Berlin as "one of the most truly impressive incumbents of his high and responsible office," there are many tributes and appraisals of Lord Jakobovits's career available online and he published many books and articles. An authorised biography was published by Chaim Bermant in 1990. Rabbi Jakobovits died at his London home and was buried in the Mount of Olives cemetery, Jerusalem.

Dayan Dr. Julius (Yoel) Jakobovits
(23 March 1886 - 7 February 1947)

Born in Lackenbach (today in Austria), Dayan Jakobovits (m. Paula Wreschner in 1919) was the son of a rabbi and two brothers were rabbis. He studied at Seminary in Pressburg (today Bratislava, Slovakia), and at the Hildesheimer seminary and the University in Berlin. He obtained Rabbinic Diploma and Doctorate in 1913. His first communal post was at Randegg (Grand Duchy of Baden, near the Swiss border) (1913-1917), and he was then Rabbi of Konigsberg, in East Prussia (today Kaliningrad, Russia). In 1928, he became Dayan in Berlin and later Rabbi of a large synagogue which was destroyed on Kristallnacht (November 1938) and head of the rabbinic court. Following Kristallnacht Dr. Jakobovits found refuge in Britain, with the help of the Chief Rabbi, Dr J. H. Hertz. He was briefly interned on the Isle of Man. Following his release, he was rabbi to the Bedford Hebrew Congregation, made up of evacuees, refugees and military personnel, as well as some resident families. He then served (c.1941-1945) two similar neighbouring evacuee communities, Windsor United Synagogue Membership Group and Slough United Synagogue Membership Group, which later merged. In March 1945 he became Dayan at the London Bet Din. He was the father of Immanuel Jakobovits, later Chief Rabbi of Britain and the Commonwealth. (Jewish Chronicle obituary 14 February 1947; Lord Jakobovits in Conversation, by Michael Sinclair, (London 2000), chapter 2 "My Father's House".)

Rev. Harris Jerevitch
(1887-January 1957)

Rev. Harris (or Harold) Jerevitch (m. Ruby Silverston in 1908) was born in Yanov in the Russia Empire (possibly the former village of Yaniv in the Ukraine which was abandoned following the Chernobyl disaster in 1986) and came to England in 1891 as a child. Before his bar mitzvah, he delivered his first drosha (lesson or sermon), at the Agudath Achim Synagogue, in London's Spitalflelds. He was a child prodigy and preached in many other East London synagogues, on occasions speaking for two hours without notes. For four years, still in his teens, he was regarded as "the Rabbi" and Baal Koreh of the West End Talmud Torah Synagogue. In 1904, aged only 17, Rev. Jerevitch was appointed head teacher to the Hebrew and Religion Classes of the Nottingham Hebrew Congregation, and later was elected minister and second reader to the congregation. In 1908 he became minister at Cardiff Hebrew Congregation where he was to serve for 45 years. He was hon. secretary of the Jewish Board of Guardians for over twenty years and became its president. He founded the Cardiff troup of the Jewish Boy Scouts and Girl Guides, was a leading Freemason, and during World War I he was chaplain to the Forces in Wales, Monmouthshire and Herefordshire. He was secretary to the Cardiff Hebrew congregation for a number of years until 1941. He retired in 1953 and was appointed emeritus minister of the congregation. He was described as a man who, "small of statue, combined pugnacity with charm." He was instrumental in the establishment of the Cardiff United Synagogue in 1942, bringing together rival congregations, under a scheme for the greater co-ordination of the Cardiff Jewish community which was known as the "Jerevitch plan". He died in Cardiff. (Jewish Chronicle Obituary 1 February 1957 and tributes 8 February 1957, and various reports.)

Rabbi Adrian Jesner
(b. 1951)

Rabbi Adrian Jesner (m. Pamela from Cardiff) studied at Israeli yeshivot where he obtained semicha and also has a degree from the Israel Torah Research Institute. In addition he is a qualified car mechanic. Rabbi Jesner served the Glasgow Jewish community for more than two decades in part time roles while also pursuing a business career. He was part-time rabbi at Queens Park Synagogue (1979-1982), at Crosshill Synagogue until its closure in 1986, and then Garnethill Synagogue (1987-c.1990). In 1990 he took up the position of minister at Netherlee and Clarkston Hebrew Congregation and in 2002 he briefly became joint minister on the amalgamation with his former synagogue at Queens Park. Rabbi Jesner was Chaplain to H.M. Prisons in Scotland for 25 years, a Vice-President of the Prince & Princess of Wales Hospice in Glasgow and a trustee of the Glasgow Jewish Community Trust. Moving south of the border, he subsequently served as minister of the Reading Hebrew Congregation (2003-2008) and the Bournemouth Hebrew Congregation (2008 to present - July 2021). (Jewish Year Book listings; various Jewish Chronicle reports.)

Rev. Kalman Joffé (Yoffe)
(c.1906 - 1973)

Rev. Joffé, who was born in Libau, Latvia, served as chazan at Vilna and Helsinki, before coming to Britain as a refugee from Nazi occupied Europe. He initially served congregations in London and the Merthyr Tydfil Hebrew Congregation, south Wales. In 1946 he was appointed chazan at the Nottingham Hebrew Congregation. He left Britain in 1949 for North America and served as assistant minister at Beth Israel Synagogue in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. (Nelson Fisher Eight Hundred Years. The Story of Nottingham's Jews; Jolles Encyclopaedia of Chatanim, etc.)

Rev. Harry Jonas
(b.14 September 1875)

Rev. Jonas (m. Fanny Bennett) was born in Grodno (now in Belarus) and served as minister of the Waterford Hebrew Congregation, Ireland (c.1896) and then served as minister and teacher at the Northampton Hebrew Congregation (1896-c.1898). He later moved to Grimsby. (Jewish Chronicle reports; Jewish Year Book listings; and A Short History of the Jews of Northampton by Michael Jolles.)

Rev. Abraham Joseph
(1799 - 1868)

Rev. A. Joseph, the son of Rev. Joseph Joseph, a mohel, served as minister at the Penzance Jewish Congregation in about 1817. He later moved to Plymouth and became a bill broker and banker. He died in Plymouth, leaving his library to the Chief Rabbi. ("The Lost Jews of Cornwall" by Kieth Pearce, Helen Fry and Godfrey Simmons.)

Rev. Dr. Barnett Joseph, MBE
(c.1908 - 6 August 1973)

Rev. Joseph was born in East London and studied at Jews' College and University College, London where he was awarded PhD in rabbinics. Rev. Joseph, MA, served the Hackney Jewish community and was minister of the Hackney Synagogue, now the Hackney & East London Synagogue, continuously from 1934 until his death in 1973 (which occurred a month before he was due to retire), except for the war years, when he was on chaplaincy duty in H.M. Armed Forces. He was director of the Chief Rabbi's "Cabinet" for Jewish Christian relations, and held honorary posts - on the national executive of the Council of Christians and Jews, on the executive of the London Society of Jews and Christians, as chairman of the North London Council of Christians and Jews, and convener from 1934 of the Hackney and Stoke Newington Ministers' Fraternity. He was grand lodge chaplain of the United Jewish Friendly Society. From 1934 to 1972 he served as Chaplain to HM Prison, Chelmsford, and for various hospitals in the London, Chelmsford and Colchester areas. In 1973 he was awarded the MBE for chaplaincy services. He is buried at Willesden cemetery. (Jewish Chronicle obituary 17 August 1973,; The History of the Hackney Synagogue in the congregation's 25th and 50th Jubilee Commemorative Booklets.)

Rev. David Joseph

Rev. David Joseph, the nephew of Jacob Joseph, was appointed in 1839 as shochet of the Adath Jeshurun (the Sunderland Israelite Congregation), the forerunner of the Sunderland Hebrew Congregation, and in 1834 he was also appointed as its "minister". He was subsequently described as holding a number of position with the congregation, including reader, secretary and registrar (resigning the latter post in 1861). (Arnold Levy, "History of the Sunderland Jewish Community 1755-1955", (1956).)

Rabbi Jacob Joseph
Rabbi Jacob Joseph

Rabbi Jacob Joseph
(1769 - 2 February 1861)

Amsterdam-born Jacob Joseph, sometimes referred to as Rabbi Jacob Joseph, accepted as offer in 1790 to become shochet and chazan of Sunderland's Polish Synagogue and the first spiritual head of the Sunderland Jewish community. However, he needed to augment his small salary by going into business. In 1872, he married the daughter of Hart Samuel, a leading member of the Sunderland community. Commercial success, as a silversmith and jeweller, lead him to resign his post. In 1821, he was a founding member of Adath Jeshurun, the forerunner of the Sunderland Hebrew Congregation. For seventy years, he was the dominant figure in Sunderland Jewry, often acting in a ministerial capacity until 1834. His influence was tremendous. He was described as a "man of some learning" (being a confidant of Chief Rabbi Hirschel) and is buried in the Sunderland Bishopwearmouth Cemetery. He was the uncle of Rev. David Joseph. (Arnold Levy, "History of the Sunderland Jewish Community 1755-1955", (1956), pp. 36/8 and additional research.)

Rev. L. Joseph

Rev. L. Joseph served as minister of Grimsby Hebrew Congregation, Lincolnshire in about 1914. (The Story of the Grimsby Jewish Community by D. & L. Gerlis, 1986; Jewish Year Book listing.)

Rev. S. Joseph

Rev. Joseph served as reader at the Sheffield Central Hebrew Congregation from about 1949 until about 1953. (Jewish Year Book listings)

Rev. Samuel Joseph

Rev. S. Joseph may have served, probably as a visiting minister, to the Londonderry Hebrew Congregation, (Northern) Ireland in about 1901. (Irish Census Returns.)

Rabbi Shmuel Joseph

Rabbi Joseph has served as rabbi of Kol Yaacov Beth Hamedrash, Edgware, London from about 2009 until present (May 2021). (Jewish Year Book and Uniquely Edgware listings.)

Simon Joseph

Mr. Joseph served as hon. minister of the Maidenhead Hebrew Congregation, Berkshire, from about 1948 until about 1949. (Jewish Year Book listings.)

Rev. Simon Joseph
(c.1861 - 1 February 1927)

Rev. Joseph served as minister of the Cheltenham Hebrew Congregation, Gloucestershire (1885-1895). He then served the Norwich Hebrew Congregation as chazan, shochet and secretary from 1895 until 1909 when he was unable to act as shochet because of illness but continued to carry out his duties as teacher and chazan until his congregation replaced him. By 1910 he was advertising his services as a mohel in London, he became director of the Kilburn and Brondesbury Talmud Torah and preached to the children at Philpot Street Great Synagogue in London's East End. Rev. Joseph became a Minister to the United Synagogue's Welfare committee. He is buried at Plashet cemetery. (Jewish Chronicle obituary 4 February 1927 and various reports)

Rev. Josesson

Rev. Josesson served as "rabbi" of Chevrah Tehillim Synagogue, Lombard Street, Dublin (c.1905-c.1907). (Jewish Year Book listings.)

Rev. David Josovic
(1917 - 1997)

Czechoslovakian-born Rev. D. Josovic (m. Rita Kleczewski in 1944) came to Britain in 1936, and studied at the Etz Chaim yeshivah and Jews' College, London. He served as chazan and teacher of the Hampstead Adath Yisroel Synagogue (later known as the Sarah Klausner Synagogue), North London; and then as minister to Llanelli Synagogue, South Wales, and Plymouth Hebrew Congregation, Devon (1954-1956). In 1957 Rev. Josovic became chazan at Nelson Street Sephardish Synagogue in London's East End and later for almost 20 years he served at the Montague Road Beth Hamedrash, Dalston, North London (c.1960-c.1979). At one stage, he was also shomer at the London Jewish Hospital. He spent the last 14 years of his life studying and teaching in Petach Tikvah, Israel. (Jewish Chronicle report of memorial service in 1998 and various reports)

Rev. Shmuel Josovic

Rev. S. Josovic, from London, was appointed as acting minister to the Harrogate Hebrew Congregation, Yorkshire. in December 1976, taking up this position after studying at University and yeshiva. He served the community until 1979 when he left to further his studies in Israel. (Rosalyn D. Livshin's The History of the Harrogate Jewish community.)

Rev. Isaac Mayer Josselson
(c.1848 - 14 August 1914)

Rev. J. Josselson (other spellings include Yoselson, Yosselson and Yosselsohn) (m. Dora) was born in Joniskis, Lithuania, and received semicha from Rabbi Itschak Alchonan. From the age of about 42 he served in Dublin, Ireland. He was minister of Lennox Street Synagogue, Dublin, from at least 1896 until about 1901 and later served more generally as communal rav in the city, with responsibility over all the synagogues. In 1904 he naturalised as a British citizen. Rabbi Josselson died in Dublin and at his funeral orations were delivered by rabbonim from Manchester, Russia and Ottoman Palestine, as well as colleagues and lay leaders from Dublin. A daughter Tamar Rivka married Rabbi M.O. Matlin and a granddaughter Lily married Rabbi S. Zalman Alony (Dubov), both of whom served in Dublin. (Jewish Year Book listings; Jewish Chronicle obituary 28 August 1914; reports and family notices.)

Rabbi Judah Leib ben Ephraim Anschel haCohen

Rabbi Judah Leib, or Loeb (also known as Judah Lieb Cohen, Judah Leib ben Ephraim Anschel Cohen or Judah Leib ben Ephraim Anschel), of Hamburg was the first rabbi of London's Askenazi community, which had recently established their own synagogue at Duke's Place in the City of London. He served from about 1691 until sometime between 1700 and 1705 (based upon different sources). An undistinguished scholar, he was in constant friction with Abraham Aberle, the lay leader of the congregation. On one occasion, it would appear that one of the fringes on the Rabbi's tallith had been deliberately cut off making the tallith unfit for use. The Rabbi had not noticed this before the synagogue service and when the problem was pointed out to him, it was extremely humiliating for him, since he was the person who was supposed to set an example to the community in matters of ritual observance. Although the culprit was never discovered, it was rumoured that the person responsible for the outrage had been Meir Levi, the beadle, acting under the instructions of Aberle, in order to encourage Rabbi Judah's departure. The Rabbi did resign and was fortunate to find another appointment in Rotterdam, where a vacancy had just occurred. (Phillip Roth's History of the Great Synagogue and Derek Taylor's British Chief Rabbis 1664-2006.)

Rabbi Menachem M. Junik

Rabbi Junik (m. Goldie), from Crown Heights, Brooklyn, New York, is the grandson of Rabbi Avraham Pevsner of Minsk (today in Belarus) who was arrested by Soviet authorities and died in a gulag about 1930. He is the son-in-law of Rabbi Shmuel Lew, headteacher of Lubavitch House Grammar School, Stamford Hill. Rabbi Junik served as minister of Croydon and District Synagogue, south London (1991-1993), and Richmond Synagogue, southwest London (1993-1999). In 2008 he founded and has since (to the present - June 2021) led Beis Gavriel, Hendon, northwest London, a Lubavitch orientated community which since 2017 has been part of the Federation of Synagogues. Rabbi Junik is spiritual and pastoral adviser to Jewish Care, the largest UK Jewish charity providing health and social care services. Rabbi and Rebbetzin Junik have led and promoted adult educational programmes and also kindergartens in the various communities were they have worked. (Beis Gavriel's website and various Jewish Chronicle reports.)

Footnotes    (returns to main text)

  1. Additional biographical information may be found in the source or sources shown in parenthesis following each profile. These were also the primary, but not necessarily the sole, source of the data provided in the profile.

Other Orthodox Rabbinical Profiles:

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