CENTRAL EUROPEAN UNIVERSITY
Budapest College
 

DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY


 
 
 
MOSES SCHORR AND MEIR BALABAN
FORGOTTEN EASTERN EUROPEAN JEWISH HISTORIANS

 
A THESIS SUBMITTED TO THE DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY IN CANDIDACY FOR THE DEGREE OF
MASTER OF ARTS

 
 
BY
ROMAN ZAKHARII

Supervisors:

First supervisor: Prof. Yaroslav Hrytsak
Second supervisor: Prof. Viktor Karady


 
 

 
Budapest
June 1998

 
 
 
 
CONTENTS
Page:

1. Introduction........................................................................        1

 Goals of study, general background and literature on the  subject

2. Chapter one: M. Schorr, the outstanding rabbi, Assyriologist and historian of Eastern European Jewry............................     11

 Tragedy of an uncompleted life......................................     11

 M.Schorr, a pioneer of Polish Jewish historiography at the  outset of Jewish historiographical science in Poland......    17

 M.Schorr as Orientalist and Bible scholar.......................    21

 Schorr's unknown publications in newspaper "Chwila"...   25

3. Chapter two: M. Balaban: the prominent historian of Polish Jews...........................................................................................   28

 Balaban's personality and brilliant career.........................   28

 M. Balaban, the founder of the historiography of Polish Jewry
          Review of Balaban's scientific legacy and main works on the  history of Jews in Poland..................................................   37

 Balaban and "Chwila".......................................................   43

4. Conclusions.............................................................................  49

5. Bibliography...........................................................................  51
6. Appendices.............................................................................  56
 
 

INTRODUCTION


 The theme of the research is quite unique and never studied in depth before in such a perspective.  There is no biography or monograph about Schorr or Balaban and some aspects of their tragic lives are still unknown. Both scholars left a significant scientific legacy that is worthy the most serious attention and study. Balaban's and Schorr's brilliant and fruitful lives indicate the importance of their scientific heritage, their works have not been studied and his publications in Jewish newspaper "Chwila" are not even included in their bibliographies. Discovering and systematising of them, and carrying out a critical historiographical analysis of them are the purpose of this thesis. Thus, the thesis will attempt  to discover in a new light not only so little known biographies of both historians but to reveal and demonstrate their huge and valuable contribution to modern historiography, and equally to the history of Eastern European Jewry.
 M Schorr is unfairly forgotten prominent Biblical scholar, orientalist, and  Jewish historian, a person of extraordinary  wisdom and knowledge, diverse outlook and versatile interests. His fruitful life and scientific activity as well as his huge scientific heritage clearly underline the outstanding personality of Moses Schorr. He was born on 10th of May in 1874 in Przemysl in Polish Galicia (Austria-Hungary at that time). Having completed the local gymnasium in 1893, he studied theology in Jewish Theological Institute in Vienna and, simultaneously,  philosophy in Vienna and Lwow Universities (1893-1898). In 1898 he was conferred the degree of the Doctor of Philosophy and Medieval Studies in Lwow University and in 1900 he received  also a
Rabbinical Diploma in Vienna. Afterwards in 1902-1903 Schorr studied Semitic philology in Berlin and Vienna under the guidance of famous scholars: Winkler, Delicz, Erman, Bart, Sachau, Muller, and others. In 1916 he was conferred the title of  Merited Professor of Lwow University in the field of Semitic languages and the history of the Ancient East. In 1923,  he was called to Warsaw where he became the main Rabbi.  Simultaneously since 1926 Schorr was the professor of Warsaw University. He headed the Institute of Judaic Sciences in Warsaw for 1928-1930 and 1933-1934 as one of  its founders. In 1938,  Schorr was chosen as a member of the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAN). In 1935,  he was chosen also for the member of Finnish Oriental Society in Helsinki. In 1937, he was conferred the degree of the merited Doctor of Sciences at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York. Schorr was also the member of the State Council for Education of Poland.
 The fate of Schorr was tragic. Trying to escape from the Nazis, he left Warsaw on 6th or 7th of September, 1939. But having reached town of Ostrog, he was imprisoned by the Soviet NKVD. He had to endure the prisons of  Lutsk, Rovno, and Lvov. In the first half of 1949 he was imprisoned in Moscow's Lubianka prison and on 17th of 1941 he was condemned for "active nationalistic activity and the fight against the revolutionary movement".
 He was assigned 5 years of hard labour  in a concentration camp and being ill he was taken to the  5th concentration camp in Posty in Uzbekistan and shortly afterwads, went to the camp hospital. He died on 8th of August of 1941 and was buried in an unknown grave.
 Polish government in exile unsuccessfully attempted to liberate  Schorr through the mediation of the US. State Department  and the Vatican. After establishing the diplomatic relations with the USSR,  these attempts were renewed, assigning him as the main military Rabbi of Anders' Army, which was formed in the USSR. Unfortunately it was too late.
 The main biographical sources about Moses Schorr himself are two publications. The name of the first is "Prof. Dr. M.Schorr na nowej placowce pracy" (Prof. Dr. M.Schorr at the new place of work). This long article was published in 1923 in the mentioned Lwow Jewish newspaper "Chwila" when Schorr was withdrawn from Lwow to Warsaw to become the main Rabbi there. This article is a biographical review about the scholar. It is one of the main sources about Schorr and the most important point is that it has never been studied before and I am discovering  new facts about Schorr's biography and life. It was completely unknown and was never included into the list of biographical materials about the scholar. Another important source is the article about Schorr published recently in Polsky Slownik Biograficzny (Polish Biographical Handbook) in 1994. This is a detailed outline of his career. It is the main source of biographical data about the last few months of his life, when he was imprisoned by the NKVD on the 10th of September of 1939 in Ostrog after Soviet occupation of Polish Western Ukraine. Among other biographical materials about his life are two small articles in the Russian Jewish Encyclopaedia (1913) published in Russian by the Brockhaus and Efron edition in Saint Petersburg  and in the Israeli Short Jewish Encyclopaedia (1988) also published in Russian in Jerusalem. Small publications about M. Schorr are also at the "Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce" (Almanac of Jewish Science in Poland, 1st volume, 1938) and at the Israeli Encyclopaedia of Jewish Diaspora (series: Poland; volume: Lvov) published in Hebrew in 1956 in Jerusalem.
 The major works of Schorr which  will be also the principal base for writing the first chapter. In these works two major trends can be defined. The first one is his  works in the field of the history of Polish Jews. Schorr started his scientific work in this while yet a student of  Vienna University in 1897. It was the investigation  entitled "Zur Geschichte des Don Joseph Nasi" (On history of Sir Joseph Nasi). The doctoral dissertation of Schorr on "Organisation of Jews in Poland" was published in Lvov historical magazine "Kwartalnik historyczny" in 1899 and also translated to Russian in the scientific monthly "Voskhod". In 1903, Schorr was conferred the award of Wawelberg for his work "Zydzi w Przemyslu do roku 1772" (Jews in Przemysl until 1772). One of the latest works of Schorr in this field was the investigation in written in German entitled "Rechtsstellung und innere Verfassung der Juden in Polen" published in Berlin in 1917.
 Discovering and systematising of of his unknown publications in Jewish newspaper "Chwila", and carrying out a critical historiographical analysis of them are my scholarly goal and interest. After the first review of the set of newspapers for 1918-1939, which is preserved only in the Scientific Library of Lvov University, there are more than ten articles of Schorr. The most important among them are: "Prawo Mojzesza na tle porownavczem prawodawstv starozytnego wschodu" (Moses' Law in comparison with the Ancient Middle Eastern legislatures, 1922); "Palestyna a Babylon w swetle najnowszych wykopalisk" (Palestine and Babylon in the light of recent archaeological excavations, 1923); "Kwestya zydowska w dobie Sejmu Wielkiego" (Jewish question at the time of the Great Seim, 1920); "Samuel Hirsch Margulies" (1922) and a few others. These primary sources are the main sources for this thesis.
 The second trend of Schorr's scientific activity were Bible studies and oriental studies in a whole. One of the first investigation in this field was work in Polish "Starozytnosci Biblijne w swietle archiwum egipskiego" (Bible antiquities in the light of Egyptian Archive). In 1903 Schorr writes intensive comments on the famous work "Babel und Bibel" of his former teacher Delicz. This commentary's name is "Kultura Babilonska a starohebraiska" (Babylonian and Hebrew culture). In 1905, he published another major work in this field "Panstwo i spoleczenstwo babilonske w okresie t. zw. dynastyi Hammurabiego" (Babylonian state and society in the period of Hammurabbi dynasty). The greatest achievement of Schorr in this field is the work in German "Urkunden des altbabylonischen Zivil-und Prozessrechts" (Documents of Ancient Babylonian Civil and Court Law). This is an edition of sources with large comments of Schorr. It was published in Leipzig in 1913. Schorr is the author of the array of other works. The main among them are: "Altbabylonische Rechtsurkunden aus der Zeit der I babylonische Dynastie" ('Ancient Babylonian documents of  the 1st Babylonian Dynasty); "Kodeks Hammurabiego a owczesna praktyka prawna" (Hammurabbi's code and the legal practice of its times, 1910); "Eine Babylonische Seisachtie aus dem Anfang der Kassitenzeit ende XVIII vorschlistl. Jahrhunderts" (Babylonian Seisachtie from the beginning of the dynasty of Kassites) published in "Sitzungsberichte der Heidelberger Akademie der Wissenschaften" in 1915; "Waznejsze kwestyi z historyi semickiego Wschodu" (The important issues on the history of the Semitic Middle East) in "Muzeum", 1917; "Przyczynki do frazeologii psalmow biblijnych a babilonskich" (Articles on the phraseology of Bible and Babylonian psalms) in "Rocznik Orientalistyczny", 1914-1915; "Problem Chettytow" (The problem of Hettites) in "Kwartalnik historyczny", 1916; "Assyrische rechtsurkunden im Umschrift und Ubersetzung" (Assyrian Law documents in writing and translation); "Das Sumerische Elemente in den Rechtsurkunden der Hammurabi-Periode" (The Sumerian element in the legal documents of Hammurabbi period) published in "Hilprecht Anniversary Volume" in 1909; "Die Altbabylonische Rechtspraxis" (The Babylonian Law practice) which appeared in "Wiener Zeitschrift fur die Kunde des Morgenlandes" in Vienna in 1910; "Dwa nowe fragmenty Kodeksu Hammurabiego" (Two new fragments of the Hammurabbi Code) published first in "Rocznik Orientalistyczny" in 1915.
 Schorr also investigated the social-economic relations of the Ancient Middle East and his main work on this is "Ruch handlowy w starozytnej Babilonii" (The trade movement in Ancient Babylon). He is the author of a lengthy article on Biblical law in Russian Jewish Encyclopaedia. There are many other Shorr's works in the field of Biblical, Babylonian, Assyrian, Hettite history and in particular its law systems. The Schorr's interest in law is not surprising due to his Rabbinical background.
 Another outstanding figure and prominent Jewish historian who lived and worked in Lviv was M. Balaban. Balaban was born in 1874 in Lwow (Lviv) in Austria-Hungary's centre of Ukrainian-Polish Galicia. He received a traditional education at home and receiving also a traditional Jewish schooling in a Heder School. He studied Law, Philosophy and History at Lwow University. Accidentally he encountered the materials of history of Jews in Krakow and being asked by Krakow Jewish kahal, he wrote the first volume of "The History of Jews in Krakow and Kazimiria 1304-1655" (Krakow, 1912). It gave him some reputation in Lwow University and Dr.M.Balaban won a high ministry scholarship, and departed for a long scientific trip to Poznan, Berlin and Gdansk. He stayed for several months in Krakow collecting there materials for the second volume of the history of Krakow Jews.  Simultaneously he started the publication "The history of Jewish system in Poland" in "Evreiskaia Starina" magazine. He taught in different schools in the Lwow region and Lwow combining studying with teaching and research. He spent the first year of  World War I in Vienna teaching at the gymnasium for Galician refugees. The next three years, he spent in Lublin as a referent (reporter) on Jewish matters by the Austrian General Government. At these posts, he organised many Jewish kahals and gymnasiums.  Together with Dr. Tohn and Dr. M.Schorr, Balaban was one of the founders of the Institute of Jewish Sciences in Warsaw. Here Balaban teached the Jewish history and led the historical seminar which issued many works on the history of Jews in Poland and in particular in the Polish kingdom. Balaban had published also "The history of Jews in Galicia" in 1916.  Since 1903 Balaban led the review of the  bibliography of  the history of Jews in Poland in the Polish historical magazine "Kwartalnik historyczny". During nine years Balaban had been administering the seminary "Takhkemoni" (1920-1929)  and for 1920-1921 he had been also the rector of the gymnasium "Askola". The fate of Balaban was also tragic like Schorr's one. He died in the Warsaw ghetto in 1941.
 Balaban's  main works which serve the base for writing the second chapter.
He was the first outstanding historian of Polish Jewry and he is fairly considered as the founder of  the historiography of Polish Jews. Among his works the most important ones are: "Jews of Lwow (Lemberg) on the eve of 17th century" (1916); "History of Jews of Krakow" (2 vols, 1931) and "Jewry of Lublin" (1919). He wrote also a detailed article about the Vaad of four lands for the 11th volume of "History of Jewish people". He published hundreds of articles which are devoted to the researches of rabbis', scholars', community leaders' activities as well as the history of bloody pogroms, about the Karaims in Poland and other topics. All they were published mostly in German, Polish or in Yiddish. Balaban's researches written in Hebrew on the history of movement's of Shabatai Zwi and Jakob Frank are especially important to note. They are resumed in his book "Le toldot ha-tnua ha-frankit" (The history of the Frank movement, 2 vols., 1934-1935). It was published in Tel Aviv. Balaban had written also "The history of the progressive synagogue in Lvov" (in polish original "Historia postepovej synagogi we Lwowie") as well as "The Bibliography of the history of Jews in Poland during 1900-1930" which encompasses more than 10.000 entries. Since 1906 he published many scientific articles in the newspaper "Kurjer Lwowski". The first more essential  essays appeared in the almanac  "Rocznik Zydowske" in 1902-1906: "Izak Nachmanovicz, zyd Lwowski XVI wieku" (Izak Nachmanowicz. the Polish Jew of the 16th century); "Josefus Flavius, "Charakterystyka czlowieka i historyka na tle wspolczesnych wypadkow" (Joseph Flavius, the person's characteristic based on  specific cases and events, 1904); "Makabeusze" (Maccabians, 1905); "Lewko Balaban, burmistrz kahalny Lwowski z konca XVIII wieku" (Lewko Balaban, the burgomaster of Lwow of the end of the 17th century). Some of these articles became the preparation for the mentioned already Balaban's work entitled "Zydzi Lwowscy na przelomie XVI i XVII wieku" (Jews of Lwow in the break of  the 16th and 17th centuries , 1906, 577 pages of the text and 188 pages of the materials). Balaban was awarded the first premium of Ipolit Wawelberg for this work. The work consists of 3 parts. In the first part Balaban depicts the live history of the external events of the community, discussing in details the clamorous deal of Lwow Jews with Jesuits and the eager leaders of the community of the Nachman family; the second part is devoted to the detailed contemplation over the community self-administration and the Rabbinate and the last part consists of  a few essays about the trade, crafts, family life, and like that. Balaban used rich archival data of the Archive of Bernardines in Lvov as well as of the Lviv City Archive and the Archive of Jewish Community in Lvov.
 The thesis itself  consists of two chapters. The first chapter will be devoted to the personality and historical legacy of M.Schorr as the outstanding Galician historian of Eastern European Jewry. This chapter is subdivided into three major subsections in which the first one tells about his personality and life, and the second and the third deal with his scientific legacy following two major trends in it:  the works in the field of history of Polish Jews and in the field of Babylonian, Assyrian, Hettite and Biblical history law and history. Accordingly, the second chapter is dedicated to another prominent historian to be discussed - M .Balaban. In its first  subsection I will touch the scholar's personality and brilliant career with its tragic end and in the second I will review Balaban's scientific legacy and main works.
 Balaban's and Schorr's contribution into the historiography of Polish Jewry was enormous. Balaban was the first one who udertook serious research on this in Polish archives. Their works remain the main and primarily sources for writing my thesis. There is no biography or monograph about Schorr or Balaban and some aspects of their star-crossed lives are still unknown. I will draw into the consideration also many completely unknown publications of Schorr and Balaban, what makes this research very essential and worth attention.

"Prof. Dr. M.Schorr na nowej placowce pracy" (Prof. Dr. M.Schorr at a new place of work), Chwila, 18 November 1923;
 Polski Slownik Biograficzny (Polish Biographical Handbook). Warszawa-Krakow: Wyd. ogolne PAN. 1994.-vol. XXXXV/4, pp. 603-604;
 Ibid.: pp. 603-604;
 Ibid.: pp. 603-604;
 Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce (Almanac of Jewish scholarship in Poland). Warsaw: Wyd. "Renesans", 1938, Vol. 1, p. 542;
 Ibid.: p. 543;
 Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce (Almanac of Jewish scholarship in Poland). Warsaw: Wyd. "Renesans", 1938, Vol. 1st, p. 542;
 

  CHAPTER ONE

M. SCHORR, THE OUTSTANDING RABBI, ASSYRIOLOGIST AND HISTORIAN OF EASTERN EUROPEAN JEWRY

TRAGEDY OF UNCOMPLETED LIFE
 

 Moses Schorr, Polish rabbi, one of the greatest Eastern European Bible scholars, orientalists and historians of Jewry was born on 10 th of May in 1874 in town of Przemysl in Galicia. After finishing the local gymnasium in 1893, he studied theology at the Jewish Theological Institute during 1893 - 1900 in Vienna and simultaneously he studied philosophy at the Vienna and Lwow Universities (1893 - 1898). In 1898 he was conferred the degree of Doctor of Philosophy and Medieval Studies at the Lwow University, and in 1900 he received also a rabbinical diploma in Vienna. In November of 1899 he became a lecturer in Jewish Teacher's Seminary in Lwow, as well as at the Teacher's Gymnasium in Lwow keeping it till 1923, where he also engaged in wider educational and social work.
 Having received the scholarship of the Austrian Ministry of Education, Schorr left for studies to Berlin where during tow years he studied the Semitic languages, Assyriology and the history of the Ancient Orient under the guidance of famous scholars Delicz, Winkler, Bart, Sachaua, Leman-Gaupt and Schtreck. In 1905 - 1906 he enlarged his knowledges studying the Arabic philology in Vienna at the remarkable semitologist D.G. Muller.
 In 1904 he was appointed*  as a lecturer and in March of 1910 associate professor of Semitic languages and history of the ancient Orient at Lwow (Lemberg/Lviv) University, a chair which he later held in Warsaw.
  In April of 1916 M. Schorr was conferred the degree of a merited Professor of the University  in the field of Semitic languages and history of the ancient Orient, having combined this post  with other certain duties at the same University till 1923. In 1912 Schorr participated in the International Congress of Orientalists in Athens, where He was assigned the functions of one of the secretaries  of the semitology section and presented a lecture entitled "Sumerian and Semitic beginnings at the Ancient Babylonian law", which was published later in Paris edition of Revue Semitique. In 1918 he became the member of Oriental Committee at the Krakow Academy, and in 1920 the member of the Polish Scientific Society in Lwow, and finally one of the founders of Polish Oriental Society in Lwow, which was founded in 1923, and called him also to its work.
  In 1923 he was called to Warsaw to succeed S. Poznanski as preacher at the moderately Reform Tlomacka Street synagogue, in which capacity he was also a member of the Warsaw rabbinical council. Some of his preachings were published.
 He was also elected for the position of inter-regional rabbi whose main duties and functions were to represent the Jewish community in front of the State and  Administrative authorities. Schorr was also appointed as a member of city and regional School Councils by the Board of Jewish community.
 In 1926 Schorr becomes the professor of Warsaw University. Later on, in 1935 he was elected to the Polish parliament.
 In February of 1928 Schorr together with M. Balaban, Tohn and Braud,  founded the Institute of Judaic Sciences, which aimed the researches of Judaic sciences and Judaism, in particular in Biblical subjects, philosophy, religion, Talmud, sociology, semitic languages, Hebrew literature. It was located in a house (nowadays it serves for the Jewish Historiacal Institute in Poland) side by side with the Great Tlomacka Streeet Synagogue.  It functioned on the strength of a state budget receiving help also from foreign Jewish institutions. The Institute retained the library which numbered over 35 thousands books, handwritings, magazines etc. Professor Schorr became the first rector of the newly created institution.  He was also the member of the State Council of education of Poland and many other social institutions.
 At the Warsaw University Schorr headed the Institute of Semitic languages and history of the Ancient Orient . While working at the Institute of Judaic sciences Schorr headed the department of Bible Studies and Hebrew theology, and during 1928-1930 he was its rector, and in three years, in 1933, he took this position the second time, being at this post just one year until 1934. In 1933-1934 he was elected for the member of the polish Academy of Sciences (PAU), and in 1935 as a member of the Finnish Oriental Society in Helsinki.
 In 1937 Schorr received the title of a merited doctor from the Jewish Theological Seminary in new York. He was also the member of the State Council of Education of Poland and since 1924 he became the head of the State Examination Committee for Jewish teachers of religion and Judaic subjects in secondary schools, the member of the Ministerial Commission for the evaluation of the school handbooks in the field of Judaica. In 1927 he initiated the creation of the Committee for building the Jewish Library at the Great Synagogue in Warsaw and became its head (this building was finished in 1936).
 Speaking about the social-educational and cultural activity of M. Schorr we should turn back for a few years and note that in 1904- 1905 he was the head of "Toynbeehali", the Society for the promotion of education among Jews in Lwow (Lemberg). At the same time he was also one of the founders and long-term members of  "Opieka", a society to support the Jewish Youth of the secondary schools. During his stay in Lwow, M. Schorr became one of the founders and the first head of the "Society of the teachers of Moses' religion of the people's of the secondary schools in of Galicia"  and at the same status he led the first teachers' congress in 1904 in Lwow. Since the moment of the foundation the Jewish Community Library in Lwow, he was the member of its Board  and later on its head.
 In 1917-1918 he headed the Jewish Rescue Committee in Lwow, and from 1916 on Schorr was also a member the central committee over the Jewish orphans in Lwow. The Society of Jewish national and secondary school, which was established at the beginning of 1919, had chosen him its first head, and in 1920 entitled him the merited member of the society.
 From 1901 on, Schorr was a member of the humanitary society Bnei Brith Leopolis (Sons of the Covenant, the Jewish Mason organisation) where during a few years he led the Library and since 1921 headed the organisation in Lwow.  Since the creation of the Great Loge of the XIII th district in Poland of the mentioned above society Bnei Brith, Schorr was elected as the vice president of the loge. In 1924  he was also the president  of the loge Braterstwo (Brotherhood) in Warsaw. Besides of many other merits, his initiative was the creation of the loge Montefiory in Lodz, as well as the appeal of the Information Bureau of the loge  Braterstwo about the situation of the Jews in Germany and other countries after 1933. Schorr was the committee, which managed the Bureau. His proper and evident goal in the activity of Bnei Brith (the organisation which reminded the Mason loges) was the unification of the national solidarity of Jews with the ideas of the universalism.
 In the political life, Schorr didn't take the active part. He clearly defined his political position  as for the Polish Jewish question in the questionnaire campaign arranged in February of 1919 by the Governmental Commission. In this questionnaire
campaign, Schorr participated as scientific expert (the protocols of this questionnaire campaign were published in a separate book W sprawie polsko-zydowskiej. Ankieta (Concerning the Polish-Jewish question. Questionnaire).
 Schorr was devoted mostly to the scientific, teaching and social activities being little active in the field of politics. In 1935 the president  Ignaci Moscicki called him for a senator position to join the parliament. In his proclamations, as well as his publications in Jewish press, Schorr expressed his concern about the growth of anti-semitic actions in Poland and the passive conduct of authorities in this concern. He led the Jewish emigrational-colonial committee, which aimed to make possible the emigration of Jews to other countries than Palestine. In July of the same year, he participated in the international conference in Evian, which was dedicated to the problem of Jewish refugees from Poland.
 After the beginning of the II World War, M. Schorr entered the Jewish Civil Committee and on 6th or 7th of September he left Warsaw. The Soviet intervention occurred when he was in Ostroh (little town in modern Western Ukraine, former Poland) and on 10 th of September he was arrested by the NKVD. He was kept in prisons in different towns  in Western Ukraine, first in Lutsk, then in Rovno, and later on in Lwow. In the first half 1940 he was transferred to  Moscow and was imprisoned in famous Lubjanka and was kept in one room with the Bund activist Viktor Alter, the poet Wladislaw Broniewski and the Polish senator of National party (Stronnictwa narodowego-SN) professor Stanislaw Glabinski  (as he said: "We became so close relationships that slept together at one bench"). The attempts to liberate Schorr, which were undertaken by Polish Government in exile with the mediation of Vatikan and the U.S. State Department didn't succeed  and on 17 th April of 1941 Schorr was assigned for 5 years of mandatory labour. He was taken to the V th concentration camp  in Posty in Uzbekistan, where he got sick and died in a camp hospital on 8th of July, 1941 being buried at some unknown grave. Polish authorities learned about his death only on the eve of 1942, after establishing the diplomatic relations between the Polish London government and USSR's government. Polish government tried to liberate him the second time planning to appoint him as the main Rabbi of the Ander's Army, which was forming at that time but it was too late already. Schorr was awarded the Golden Cross of Merit.
 Schorr was married (since 1905) with Tamara Ben Jakob, the daughter of a publisher and bibliographer Yitzkhak Ben Yakob; she died at the camp of Fittel in Frankfurt in April of 1944. He had six children with her: Sonja (died in 1961), wife of Arthur Miller, the prosecutor of the High Court in Warsaw and the head of the of the Criminal law Department  at the Ministry of Justice of Poland; Deborah (died yet in Lwow in 1917); Felicia, in marriage Kon-Lipets (died in New York in 1984); Ludwig (1918-1963) the outstanding architect who settled in Tel Aviv; Esther, in marriage Ben-Kohav (died in Jerusalem in 1991), and also Joshua (Otton), engineer in Jerusalem.
 There are streets named after his name in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Holon.
There was also a scientific meeting devoted to M.Schorr and in 1993 the similar meeting took place at the Polish Academy of Sciences in Krakow.
 

 SCHORR AS ONE OF THE MAJOR HISTORIANS OF POLISH JEWRY

 The scientific heritage of M.Schorr is undoubtedly large and worth of attention. In the next part of this chapter the main focus will be on his scientific legacy and main works starting from his first articles till the last written works. The special attention will be paid to his unknown publications which appeared at the Jewish newspaper Chwila (means "wave" in Polish), which was published in Polish in Lwow during the inter war period.
 Two main trends can be defined in his works. The first stream of his scientific activity deals with the history of Polish Jews. Schorr started his early scientific work in this field yet as a auditor of Vienna University in 1987, writing his first serious work entitled Zur Geschichte des Don Josef Nasi (Concerning the history of Don Joseph Nasi), which  was published in Monatschrift fur die Wiessenschaft des Judenstum. In this work, the author analyses the relations of Joseph Nasi with a king Zygmont August in the light of the situation of Jews in Poland at that time.
 The doctor dissertation of M.Schorr entitled "The Organisation of Jews in Poland" first appeared in Lwow at the Lwow magazine Kwartalnik historyczny in 1899, and later on was also translated into Russian at the  Russian scientific monthly "Woschod". In 1903 Schorr was awarded the prize of Wawelberg (the famous Polish-Russian banker and philantropist) for his work Zydzi w Przemyslu do roku 1772 (Jews in Przemysl till 1772) . The first mentioned above work, the doctor dissertation Organizacya Zydow w Polsce  (Organisation of Jews in Poland) is a serious attempt  to summarise the data about the kahal organisation of the central institutions of Jewish self-administration  Vaads and the workshops of Jewish craftsmen. Another work, the monograph about the Jews in Przemysl, is precious not only for its concise examination of the history of this remarkable community but also for the numerous documents which are added in the end of the book (the detailed review of this book is in "Jevrejskaja Starina" magazine published in 1909, no. 1) Schorr published also "The Krakow code of Jewish laws and privileges in Poland", having written in addition the article about its significance and contradictory questions  regarding the main privileges.
 Shorr is also the author of a large article about the Hebrew language in Encyklopedya Polska (Polish Encyclopeadia, vol. III, 1915). One of his last works in the field of Jewish history in Poland, is a research Rechtsstellung und innere Verfassung der Juden in Polen (The legal situation and internal organisation of Jews in Poland) published in German which was published in Berlin and Vienna in 1917.
 
 

  M. SCHORR AS ORIENTALIST AND BIBLE SCHOLAR

 The  second major stream of Schorr's scientific activity concerns primarily the Bible Studies (in particular the researches of Biblical Law), assyriology and the history of the Ancient Orient in general. Starting from 1904 onwards all of Schorr's works are primarily focused  on this subjects.
 One of his first works in this field was the investigation Starozytnosci biblijne w swietle archiwum egipskiego (Biblical antiquities in the light of the Egyptian archive). It  was published in magazine "Przewodnik naukowy i literacki" in 1901 and was published separately as well. In 1903 Schorr writes large comments on respected and  famous book Babel und Bibel (Babylon and Bible). This commentary is named Kultura Babilonska a starohebrajska (Babylonian and Hebrew culture) which appeared firs time in Kwartalnik historyczny, and later on as a separate edition.
As it was noted before, some of Schorr's works were written in and published in German. One of such works is the investigation Die Kohler-Peisersche Hammurabi Ubersetzung" (The Hammurabi Code translation of Peiser-Kohler), where the author gives detailed analyses of this translation.
  Schorr was also dedicated to the study of Babylonian history. His main work on this subject is Panstwo i spoleczenstwo babilonske w kresie t.zw. dynastyi Hammurabiego (The Babylonian state and society at the time of Hammurabi dynasty) which first appeared as a separate edition in 1906 in Lwow and afterwards was published also in Kwartalnik historyczny  Another highly respected work of the scholar in this field is Eine Babylonische Seisachtie aus dem Anfang der Kassitenzeit, ende XVIII vorchristl. Jahrhunderts (The Babylonian Seisachtie of the times of the Kassites' dynasty, the end of 18 th century B.C.) In this research Schorr discusses and presents one of the newly discovered old Babylonian texts, which were published and investigated by Oxford assyriologist Langdon.
 He also made serious researches on the history of the social and commercial life of the Ancient Orient and in particular the trade movement in the ancient Babylon. The work's title is Ruch handlowy w Satorozytnej Babilonii (The trade movement in the old Babylon). It was published in 1911 in a commemorative book while celebrating 25th anniversary of the establishment of Lwow University.
 Schorr had also translated and systematised the old Babylonian  legal documents, having written large commentary in addition to it. This serious work entitled Altbabylonische Rechtsurkunden aus der Zeit der I -ste Babylonische Dynastie (Old Babylonian legal documents of the times of the I -st Babylonian dynasty).
 The legal issues and the law history were of the main subject of Schorr's researches. That's not surprising since the scholar was a rabbi himself. He did lots of researches in the comparative studies of the law history of the Ancient Orient and in particular trying to make the parallels between the Biblical law and other legal systems of that time. Among them: Kodeks Hammurabiego a owczesna praktyka prawna (Hammurabi Code and the ancient oriental legal practices) which first appeared in Rozprawy of the history-philosophy department of the Krakow Academy of Sciences and in 1907 was published separately .
 The biggest achievement of the scholar in the field of Oriental studies  is considered the work Urkunden des altbabylonische Zivil- und Prozessrechts (The documents of the Old Babylonian civil and criminal law). This is the edition of sources with large comments of the author.
 

 SCHORR'S UKNOWN PUBLICATIONS IN NEWSPAPER "CHWILA"

 For a long time Schorr actively cooperated with the leading Jewish newspaper of Poland Chwila , which was published in Lwow during the inter-war period. In his numerous publications he popularised his old and initiated the new themes and ideas. Those articles in their larger part, were neither examined  in the historiography of these problems, nor included in his bibliography.
 Discovering and systematising of his unknown publications in Jewish newspaper Chwila, and carrying out a critical historiographical analysis of them are my scholarly goal and interest. After the first review of the set of newspapers for 1918-1939, which is preserved only in the Scientific Library of Lviv [Lwow] University, there are more than ten articles of Schorr. The most important among them are: Palestyna a Babylon w swietle najnowszych wykopalisk (Palestine and Babylon in the light of recent archaeological excavations, 1923); Samuel Hirsch Margulies (1922), which is dedicated to the outstanding personality of the Italian Jewry , outcomer from Galicia Samuel Hirsch Margulies (1858-1922), who became later the leader of Italian Jewry. This publication is commemorated  to the scholar due to his death in the same year. As nekrolog to this article, Schorr writes:

 "Italian Jewry undergone a big loss in the death of the Rabbi of Florence and  rector of local rabbinical seminary Dr. Samuel Hirsch Margulies (died on 12 th  of march), who had been the Rabbi for more that three decades leaving a  strong footprint on a life and culture of the Jews of whole Italy. Margulies was  of Polish [Galician] origin, being born in Brzezany [current Berezhany] in  1858 receiving  a versatile Biblical-Talmudic education at home and after  finishing the gimnasium devoted himself to the study of theology in Wroclaw  (1881-1885). In 1890 he was called for the position of the Rabbi of Florence,  where  managed to became the leader of whole Italian Jewry. He became the  spiritual leader in all the spheres of the civic life, on account of his deep Judaic  knowledge, organisational abilities and personal favourite pursuits in the  subjects of spirit and heart. Thanks to him the indefferential religious life of  Italian Jews started to be a live artery filled with strong native Jewish traditions  and culture. He also initiated the centralized unification of all Jewsih  communities which created a new Collegio rabbinico italiano (instead of old  renown institution in Padova under the guidence of S.D. Luccatta) in Florence,  assigning him the administration and caring over it. This seminary (where  studied the Viennese Rabbi Prof. Chajes) produced an array of young Rabbis,  who started the spiritual Renessaince of Italian Jewry"
 Schorr's interest in spiritual subjects and religious life was his distinct trait and attribute for he himself was the main Rabbi of Warsaw and the first rector of the Institute of Jewish Sciences (Rabbinical seminary) there, deeply sympathising the personality of S. Hirsch Margulies so similar to his own.
 His largest publication in Chwila is Prawo Mojzesza na tle porownawczem prawodawstw Starozytnego Wschodu (The Moses' law in the comparative perspective with the laws of the Ancient Orient).  This is the large series of articles where Schorr continues and develops his old scientific subjects comparing the Biblical Law with Babylonian law in the first section of the publication, following the comparison with  the Assyrian and Hettite legislatures in the second and third sections. Here Schorr is also referring to his previous work about the Hettites Problem Chettow (The Hettites' problem), published seven years before in Kwartalnik historyczny.
 Furthermore, I will mention a few others newly discovered publications of Schorr. Some of them deals with the history of the Polish Jewry as Kwestya zydowska w dobie Sejmu Wiekiego (The Jewish question at the time of the Great Sejm)  Some are of the philosophical content like Radosna Chwila (The joyful moment)  and Pesach Micarim - Pesach le Atid. The last one is the series of articles of the historical-philosophical character, where the author talk about the Haggadah and escape of Jews from Egypt in the light of this legendary collection of the legends and tales of the Jewish people.  He starts it with the words from Mishna (Pesach X.5) : "In every generation and age man must be considered as a member of the Escape from Egypt"... "The sublime flash in the mind of deep historiosopher, who as intuitively grasped the greatness of this episode on the eve of Israel's history..."  continued by the author.  Summarising the biography and the scientific legacy of Schorr we may surely talk about him as about the outstanding personality and famous historian, the person of wide outlook and versatile interests, whose scientific heritage is deserving the most serious attention and study.
 

 CHAPTER TWO

M. BALABAN: THE PROMINENT HISTORIAN OF POLISH JEWS
 

Subsection 1:
BALABAN'S PERSONALITY AND BRILLIANT CAREER ENDED UP IN WARSAW GHETTO

 Meir Balaban was born in 1877 in Lwow (Lviv), in a family of of Hebrew printer and traders. The Balaban family had been active in Lwow and Zolkiew (Zhovkva) as Hebrew printers from 1830 to 1914. The geneology of this family goes back to the second half of the 17 th century. His ancestors occupied the kahal positions in Lwow, and one of them, named Lewko, was the Senior of the Jewish community of the city, and after buying the stown house out of the Jewish ghetto, he was in the judicial process with the municipal hall concerning the privatization of the house till the end of his life. Meir Balaban has devoted to him the historical essay "Lewko Balaban, burmisrz kahalny Lwowski" (Lewko Balaban, the kahal burgomeister of Lwow), Lwow, 1904.  Lewko's son Zusman Balaban was also the member of the Kahal Council in Lwow and together with another Lwow rabbi signed the oath regarding the Hassidic butchers in 1792. Since that time Balabans were the adherents of Misnagdim and Meir's grandfather Jozef Jehuda (rabbi Leiba Balaban) fought against the hassidism on the side of rabbi Jakow Orenstein (Jeshua Jakow) and this tradition passed through to Meir's father Alexander Zusman, who was the progressive and very pious man.
 One of Balabans, Leobel Balaban had founded Balaban printing shop and publishing house in Lwow in 1830. It was one of the main Jewish printing shops in Lwow, which published and printed almost exlusively only the books of the religious-scientific and liturgical character. Leobel Balaban was the member of kahal , being very renown in the city.  After his death in 1848 the bussiness inherited his son Moses Pinkhas Balaban, and finally  the wife of the latter Pessel (1860). The firm became famous in Galicia, Polish kingdom and Russia. Among its publications: Shulkhan Arukh with numerous comments; Orakh Haim, 1880; Yore Dea, 1887; Khoshem Mishpat, 1882; Eben ha ezer, 1880; an array of the editions of the Bible, the most renown one is so called Mikrat Gadol (1885) with 18 commentaries; the prayer-books with comment. Furthermore, the printing hose published only Bibles and prayer-books according to the testament of its founder Leobel:

 "Only Moses and men of the Great Congregation are worth printing their  books. The firm ignores the modern Jewish literature and contemporary Jewish  science"
 This is how Balaban describes the printing traditions of its family in one of the articles in Jevrejskaja Entsiklopedija (Russian Jewish Encyclopeadia) where he published many of his investigations. It indicates also the importance of the religous tradition in his family.
 In such a family he received the traditional education and the tradition Jewish schooling in heder. In young age he was given to the Czacki primary school and later on to the gimnasium. Simoltaneously he was learning the Jewish science himself either in the mornings before the school or during the long nights (going at 6 a.m. to heder). In 1895 after the passing of the Abitur exam (the certificate of matureness) in the 4th gimnasium in Lwow, he entered the law faculty in Lwow university but after a while he interrupted his studies having occupied the teaching position at the Baron de Hirsch's school in Hlyniany, and afterwards in Holohory. It was in 1898, 40 years of life were still in future.  For further teaching at this school he had to add the pedagogical subjects (the seminary ceratificate)  to his gimnaisum certificate, since Baron de Hirsch's school hadn't yet the civic rights and Balaban had to pass the practice  in a civic school, where the Ukrainian was the main language of instruction. It was a pure province in Galicia and the second form, where Balaban teached, numbered 117 children and the instruction was going at the village hall.
 Balaban liked the school and youth since the beginning of his teaching career and the children liked him. It should be noted also that Balaban teached also the singing besides of the general subjects and founded the choir which singed at the sionistic evenings. He established there the society Zion where teached the Jewish history, preaparing from the handbooks of Kasl, and Graetz, which was published in Yiddish at that time. Balaban wrote diaries being very interested in history since the gymnasium years and childhood since Meir's father was very fond of history and this family devotion to this subject revealed itself later in Meir's career. While teaching in Hlyniany, Balaban read every historical book found and put in order by him at the library of the owner of the town. In January of 1900 he was transferred to the school of Baron de Hirsch in Holohory but here, at the remote province he didn't find any activity for himself and alredy in November of the same year he returned to Lwow, where he occupied the teaching position at the Czacki primary school, where once he was a pupil. The teaching at thi school was hard since the forms numbered from 65 to 85 pupils. The first form where Balaban teached had 87 boys aged from 6 to 13.
 Having settled in Lwow, Balaban passed so called "qualification exam" and alredy in spring of 1902 returned back to the university studies. He didn't study the law further but philosophy and history. Simoltaneously he started to work for the Zionist weekly Wschod, which he left a few years before when going to Hlyniany. He also wrote articles for the  Zionist magazine Przyszlosc (means future in Polish).
 The combination of teaching and university studies wasn't so easy and especially his archive work under the guidence of two his professors Ludwig Finkel and the law historain Oswald Baltzer. Since that time he started to work on the history of Lwow Jews, starting from the researches of legends about so called "Golden Rose". In the same time he studied the bibliography of the history of Jews in Poland and in 1903 published "The review of the literature and history of Jews in Poland for 1899-1903". Meanwhile, he also passed the exam for the teacher of religion and was trasferred from Czacki school to the whole array of other primary schools, where he was assigned teaching the religion.
 In 1904 he finished his work on theme Zydzi lwowscy na przelomie XVI-XVII wieku  (The Jews of Lwow at the turn of the 17th century) having recieved the award of from the philosophy faculty of the university as well as the costs for publishing from the Foundation of Hipolit Wawelberg and was transferred from the primary schools to the 4th gimnasium assigning him to teach the Jewish religion there. The above mentioned work was recommended by Prof. Michail Bobzynski (who was later the Governer General of Galicia) for the award of Barczewski of the Polish Academy of Arts. In this work Balaban displayed a thorough grasp of his subject, scholarly meticulousness, and capacity for presenting lucidly the various aspects of life in great detail.
 The publication of such serious work, which the historical critics accepted and appreciated very highly promising him a great future, opened him the way to the scientific institutions, making also easier  his work in secondary school.  After the doctoral defence at the univrsity and passing the teacher's exam on general history and geography, Balaban received the teaching position in Sokal with the simoltaneous appointment to the 6th gimansium in Lwow. Since that time Balaban intensively works in the scientific sphere. He continued the researches of the history of Lwow Jews and in 1909 published his work Dzielnica zydowska, jej dzieje i zabytki (The Jewish ghetto, its history and remembrances) at the "Biblioteka Lwowska" and Spis Zydow i karaitow ziemi halickiej z r. 1765 (The list of Jews and Karaims of the Galician land since 1765) published in the same year  at the Academy of Arts in Krakow.
 Independently from this, Balaban continued "The Bibliography of the history of Jews in Poland" in Kwartalnik historyczny in Lwow, and later on (starting from 1909) in Przeglad Historyczny in Warasaw.
 During 1905-1906 Balaban was a chief editor of the monthly Haor, the magazine of the union of the teachers of the Jewsih law in Galicia.
  When in 1909 Dubnow had started to publish magazine Jevrejskaja Starina, Balaban not only was sending his works for every issue but made every effort seeking for Starina the works of young Galician historians (Schipper, Heckerow etc.) In Starina Balaban also led the bibliographical section similar to his bibliographies in Polish magazines. Accidentally, Balaban encountered the documents and materials reagarding the history of Jews in Krakow and being asked by the Krakow kahal  accomplished the first volume of The History of Jews in Krakow and Kazimiria, 1304. It made him the reputation In Lwow University and with the assistence of Prof. Finkel, Balaban received one-year vacation in a secondary school and high ministerial scholarship making a long scientific trip to Poznan, Berlin and Gdansk. He also stayed for a few months in Krakow collecting the materials for the second volume of The History of Cracow Jews. Simoltaneously he started to publish in Starina the extensive work entitled The History of Organisation of Jews in Poland.
  The war had interrupted all the  intentions of Balaban. He spent the first year of the war in Vienna, where he teached in gimnasium for Galician refugees as well as leading the courses organized for the teachers of Jewish religion from Galicia.. The next three years he spent in Lublin serving as a reporter on Jewish matters at the Austrian General Governer office and later on as a field rabbi of the Austrian army in the occupied areas. Serving at these posts Balaban organized the new kahals in the Polish kingdom, attended the Jewish schools and co-operated at the organizing the Jewish gimnasiums. He had organized the educational courses for melameds  in Lublin, Kelce, and Chelm ans other places, serving also as a teacher at some of them, for instance in Radomsk.
 Besides this intricate work which demanded the permanent moves, Balaban didn't neglect the historical work nad started the another investigation Die Judenstadt von Lublin (The Jewry of Lublin) which was based on pure but interesting archive materials. During his travelings he collected the materials about Jewish antiquities and historical monuments in Polan, photographing them saving by this from the oblivion.
  By the end of the war Balaban entered the Polish Army (Lublin, commander gen. Smigly Rydz), but after a few months of the military service he was assingned by the Ministry of Education to head the women Jewish gimansium in Czenstochowa, having occupied also one of the position at the local synagogue. He pent lots of energy at the position of the gimnasium directorsettling and putting in order both the gimasium and synagogue, having compiled the statute for them (the first in Poland), plus selectid the highly qulified teaching staff, which furthermore became the permanent and effective, but after half a year of work at this position he was forced by the Ministry of Religious Confessions and Civil Education to move to Warsaw  in order to head the first School of Rabbis of a new style "Takhkemoni". This school was designed as synthesis of full a full eight-years gimnasium with a Yeshivot  with a complete instruction of Talmud consisting of 8 hours of classes per week, besides of teaching of the Bible, Hebrew, philosphy of religion etc... This program demanded two kinds of teachers who problematically coped between themselves in the ways of methodological and educational issues. Balaban made lots of effots to overcome these contradictions having the positive results in a few years.
  Balaban headed the Seminary "Takhkemoni" for nine years  (1920-1929) being also the director of the gimnasium "Askola" in 1920 - 1921 and afterwards teaching the general history the for many years. While free from the educational work Balaban continued his historical researches. The product of this research was the 4 volumes handbook "The Jewish history and literature with a detailed review of the history of Jews in Poland". The handbook was used at all Jewish schools in Poland and was partly translated into Hebrew being used at the Jewish schools in Palestine too. Besides this Balaban published in war and inter-war period "The History of Jews in Galicia" (1916), a few volumes of historical research. The first one is completely new and changed edition of the first volume  of "The History of Jews in Cracow" (1931) and the second one presents  the history of Jewish community in Cracow till 1868 (1936). Both volumes number over 1400 pages and 80 tables with illustrations and pictures.
 During this time Balaban also had written Historia postepowej synagogi we Lwowie 1840-1936 ("History of the progressive synagogue in Lwow 1840-1936", Lwow, 1937) as well as Bibliografija historyi zydow w Polsce za 1900-1930 ("A bibliography of history of Jews in Poland for 1900-1930"). It encomposses over 10.000 entries.
 From 1927 Balaban teached at the Warsaw University of J. Pilsudski being the Associate Professor there and from 1936 as professor teached the Jewish history heading also the Seminary of the history of Jews in Poland at the same university. Since 1928 Balaban teached also at the Free Polish School.
 Together with Schorr, Tohn and Braud, Balaban had organised the Institute for Jewish Sciences in Warsaw in 1928. It was opened in February of the same year in a house nearby the Greatt Tlomacka Street Synagogue. It was in fact a Rabbinical Seminary of Poland and Balaban served there as lecturer in Jewish history leading also the historical seminar at the Warsaw University which produced lots of works in the field of Jewish history in Poland and in particular in Polish kingdom.   Balaban's seminar at the Warsaw Unniversity became the most yielding and productive center of  Jewish historical school in Poland, despite of the fact that at the Seminary teached many eminent historians. Balaban's students both from the university and the institute occupied teaching positions throughout Poland proclaiming everywhere the science of their maestro, many of them became the outstanding scholars too. Among them: Artur Eisenbach, Jozef Kermisz, Izajasz Trunk.
 Besides the scientific and pedagogical work Balaban was also largly engaged in organisational work leading  for 5 years the Institute for Jewish Sciences. It should be noted too that for 40 years he also was the co-worker of numerous scientific magazines  as Monatschrift fur Geschichte und Wissenschaft Judentums, Zeitschrift fur die Geschichte der Juden in Deutschland, Kwartalnik dla historii zydow w Polsce, Nowe Zycie (the magazine which was led and published by himself in 1924), Ha- tkufa and so on.
  From the outset of his scholarly career Balaban applied himself to collecting a bibliography on the history of the Jews in Poland; his first prizewinning publication in this field appeared in Polish in 1903. The first part of his own bibliography for the years 1900-30 appeared in 1939.
 Balaban like all the spiritual leaders of Polish Jewry, notably the numerous rabbis assured his anxious followers, during summer of 1939, that there would be no war. At the end of August he replied to questioners:
 "I do not believe that war is imminent."
 When he was reminded of this some three years later in the ghetto of Warsaw, he confessed:
 "This was the greatest mistake in all my life."
  When the Nazis overran Poland, Balaban refused to flee. He died in Warsaw in November 1942 before the liquidation of the ghetto and was thus vouchsafed burial in the Jewish cemetery.

 

M. BALABAN: THE FOUNDER OF THE HISTORIOGRAPHY OF POLISH JEWRY

(THE REVIEW OF BALABAN'S SCIENTIFIC LEGACY AND MAIN WORKS ON HISTORY OF JEWS IN POLAND)

 Balaban published about 70 historical studies and about 200 short papers and reviews in various periodicals. He was justly considered the founder of the historiography of Poish Jewry, especially of its communal life.
 Scholar started his literary-scientific activity in 1897 publishing little essays in the Zionist magazine Przyslosc (Polish: "future"), and later on in a weekly Wschod (Polish: "East"). From 1903 on Balaban led a permanent bibliographical review of history of Jews in Poland and Russia in Kwartalnik historyczny, and from 1906 on he publishes the scientific treaties in newspaper Kurjer Lwowski. Here he wrote an array of treaties and articles on the history of Jews in Poland and on the Jewish history in general. The first serious works of Balaban appeared in almanac Rocznik zydowske in 1902-1906: Izak Nachmanowicz, zyd lwowski XVI wieku ("Isaak Nachmanowicz. the Lwow Jew of the 16 th century," 1904); Josephus Flavius, Charakterystyka czlowieka i historyka na tle wspolczesnych wypadkow ("Joseph Flavius, the characteristic of man in the light of specific cases and stories", 1904); Z przemyskich dziejow ("On the Przemysl history", 1904); Zycie prywatne zydow lwowskich na przelomie XVI i XVII wieku ("Private life of Lwow Jews at the turn of the 16 th and 17 th centuries," 1905); Makabeusze ("Maccabians," 1905); Lewko Balaban, burmistrz kahalny lwowski z konca XVIII wieku ("Lewko Balaban, kahal burgomeister of Lwow of the end of the 18 th century," 1905). Some of these articles became as preparatory works for the main, already mentioned work of Balaban Zydzi lwowscy na przelomie XVI i XVII wieku  ("The Jews of Lwow at the Turn of the 17th Century," 1906). This work numbers 577 pages of text and 188 pages of different materials. Balaban was awarded the first prize of Ipolit Wawelberg for this work. In this work he demonstrated a thorough knowledge of his subject, scholarly erudition, and a capacity for presenting clearly the various aspects of life in great detail. The book consists of three parts; in the first chapter Balaban gives a live picture of the external events of the community, resting in detail on the renown process of Lwow Jews with with the Jesuits and on the energetic leaders of the community from the family of Nachmanowicz and others. The second part is devoted to the detailed consideration of the communal self-administration and rabbinate, and the third one consists of a few essays on the trade, crafts, family life, land lending etc. Balaban used a rich archival material  primarily from the archive of Bernardines' in Lwow, Lwow city archive and the archive of Jewish community in Lwow. The great number of illustrations (types of Lwow Jews, synagogue utensil, synagogues and  houses, rare grave stown plaques, plan of the old ghetto, stamps of Jewish traders etc.) gives a special historical-cultural interest to the book.
 Balaban researched the history of other Jewish communities as well: Zalmaw, burmistrz kahalu w Drohobyczu w pol. XVIII wieku ("Zalmaw, the Jewish community mayor of Drohobych in the second half of the 18th century");  Cieniom Stanislawa Zolkiewskiego (...of Stanislaw Zolkiewski). Some works are devoted to the history of educational movement among Jews: Herz Homberg i szkoly jozefinskie dla zydow w Galicyi w r. 1787-1806 ("Herz Homberg and Josephian Schools for the Jews in Galicia in 1787-1806," Lwow, 1907); and Historya projektu szkoly rabinow i nauki religii mojzeszowej na ziemiach polskich ("The History of the Project of the School for the Rabbis and Jewish Religion in Polish Lands," Lwow, 1907).
 In his book Przeglad literatury historyi zydow w Polsce, 1899-1907 ("Review of the Literature on the History of Jews in Poland, 1899-1907," Lwow, 1908) Balaban listed the works on the history of Jews in Poland and Russia which appeared 8 years before publishing the book with lots of critiques about many historical publications.
 Collections of his articles and treatises, containing the biographies of rabbis, doctors, and communal leaders, and the history of printing houses, blood accusations, and the Karaites in Poland, were published in German, Polish and Yiddish.
 Balaban contributed over 150 articles to the Russian-Jewish Encyclopedia Yevreyskaya Entsiklopediya. He wrote a great deal of articles in his field in Yevreyskaya Entsiklopediya, Judisches Lexicon, Enzyklopedia Iudaica, Polski Slownik Biograficzny of the Polish Academy of Arts, Enzyklopedii Polskiej etc. Besides that published the historical and literary-critical articles almost in the whole Polish press. (Kurjer Lwowski, Slowo Polskie) as well as in Polish-Jewish, Jewish,and Hebrew newspapers recording the works in the field of Jewish history in popular debates and book critiques articles.
 Balaban together with Natan Szwalb, Jozef Opatoszu and Bernard Singer was also among the chief editors and co-workers of the moderate Zionist daily Nasz Przeglad, which was published in Warsaw from 1923 till 20 IX 1939.
 Particularly significant are his studies written in Hebrew on the Shabbatean and Frankit movements, summarized in his Le-Toledot ha-Tenu'ah ha-Frankit ("History of the Frankist Movement", 2 vols., 1934-35). It was published in Tel Aviv.
 Like Schorr, Balaban also co-operated with the Polish Jewish newspaper Chwila which was published in Lwow as a local Jewish publication and daily newspaper. It was one among  many numerous Jewish newspapers, where Balban published his historical articles and critical-literary reviews in the field of Jewish history. One of such reviews was his artcle reagrading the book of Samuel Kraus "Die Wiener Geserah vom Jahre 1421", which was published in the same 1920 year in Vienna. Article's title is Smutna rocznica ("Sad anniverssary").  Balaban writes:

 "Viennese community celebrates its bloody  anniversary of 50 years since the  moment when Austrian princes Albrecht V (as emperor Albrecht II) ordered to  close all the Jews of his lands in the prison where no one was allowed to leave  alive. Two dates, 23 rd of May 1420 and 12 th of March 1421, the date of  imprisonment of the Jews and the date of burning the victims are the bloody  signs in the history of Viennese Jews, simultaneously in the Jewish history at  all. A blaze of a burning haystack had been blazing for a long time lightening  the bloody history of Viennese community. Shining of this blaze  still could be  seen today ... and professor of the Rabbinical School there wrote a wide work,  in which he wants to  honour and perpetuate the tragedy of history setting the  memorial for the victims who where burned at the stack then. The German - Jewish  chronicle is named : "Die Wiener Geserah..."

 In the same 1920 year and in the same newspaper Chwila Balaban publishes the next articles: Dr Emanuel de Jona, lekarz nadworny Jana Trzeciego ("Dr Emanuel de Jona, the court physician of Jan III"), which deals with the history of Lwow Jews;  Drukarnie hebrajskie w Zolkwie i Lwowie ("Jewish printing shops in Zolkwa and Lwow") concerning the history of printing in Poland;  Becal, celnik ziem ruskich ("Becal, the custom officer of  Rus' lands"), the historical essay of the 17th century.
 Among other Balaban's publications in Chwila are the following: Auto-da-Fe we Lwowie w r. 1728 ("Auto-da-Fe in Lwow in 1728"). Auto-da-fe is the (the Portuguise form for French acte de foi (from Latin actus fidei) which is the solemn declaration and thereafter the execution procedure assigned  by the Inquisition. The Jews were usually condemned for the Judaism. The solemn declaration of the sentence commonly took place in a church during the first week of the Christmass fast
 
 

Annotations for two chapters:

Prof. Dr. M.Schorr na nowej placowce pracy (Prof. Dr. M.Schorr at a new place of work) Chwila, 18 November 1923, p.4;
 Ibid.
 Prof. Dr. M. Schorr na nowej placowce pracy (Prof. Dr. M.Schorr at a new place of work). Chwila, 18 November, 1923;
 J.Tomaszewski. Najnowsze dzieje zydow w Polsce w zarysie do 1950 roku (Contemporary History of Jews in Poland till 1950) Warsaw: Wydawnictwo Naukowe PAN, 1993, pp. 252-253;
 Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce (Almanac of Jewish scholarship in Poland), Warsaw: Wyd.  Renesans, 1938, p. 104;
 Polski Slownik Biograficzny (Polish Biographical Directory). Vol. 25/4. Warsaw: PAN, 1994, p. 603;
 Ibid.: p. 603;
 Prof. Dr. M.Schorr na nowej placowce pracy (Prof. Dr. M.Schorr at a new place of work). Chwila, November 18, 1923, p. 4;
 Ibid.
 Polski Slownik Biograficzny..., p. 603;
 Ibid.: p. 603;
 Prof Dr. M.Schorr na nowej placowce pracy...
 Polski Slownik Biograficzny...p. 603.
 Ibid.
 Ibid.;
 Ibid.;
 M.Schorr. Zur Geschichte der Don Josef Nasi (Concerning the history of Don Joseph Nasi) Monatschrift fur die Wiesenschaft des Judenstums, Vienna, 1897;
 Prof. Dr. M.Schorr at a new place of work...
 Jevrejskaja Entsiklopedija (The Jewish Encyclopeadia), St Petersburg: The Publishing house for scientific Jewish publications and The Edition of Brockhaus and Efron, 1913, p. 71;
 Prof. Schorr na nowej placowce pracy...
 M.Schorr. Die Kohler-Peisersche Hammurabi Ubersetzung (Hammurabi Code translation of Kohler-Peisersche) Wien, 1907;
 M.Schorr. Panstwo i spoleczenstwo babilonske w okresie t. zw. dynastyi Hammurabiego (The Babylonian state and society at the time of Hammurabi dynasty) Lwow, 1906;
 M.Schorr. Ruch handlowy w Starozytnej Babilonii (The trade movement in the Ancien Babylon) in "Ksiega pamiatkowa ku uczczeniu zalozenia Uniw. Lwowskiego", Lwow, 1911;
 M.Schorr. Kodeks Hammurabiego a owczesna praktyka prawna (Hammurabi Code and the legal practices of the Ancient Orient) Krakow, 1907;
 M.Schorr. Urkunden des albabylonischen Zivil- und Prozessrechts (Documents of Old Babylonian civil and crimianal law) Leipzig: Vor der Asiatischen Bibliothek, 1913;
 M.Schorr. Samuel Hirsch Margulies (1858-1922), Chwila, 13 May 1922, p. 3;
 M.Schorr. Prawo Mojzesza na tle porownawczem prawodawstw Starozytnego Wschodu (Moses' law in the comparative perespective with the laws of the Ancient Orient) Chwila, 3-7, 13, 17, 19-22, 24-29 November 1923;
 M.Schorr. Problem Chettow (Hettites' problem) in Kwartalnik historyczny, 1916;
 M.Schorr.Kwestya zydowska w dobie Sejmu Wielkiego (The Jewish question at the time of Great Sejm) Chwila, 13-14 July 1920;
 M.Schorr. Radosna Chwila (The joyful moment), Chwila, 9 November 1923;
 M.Schorr. Pesach Micraim - Pesach le -atid. Haggadah do uzytku Chwili (Haggadah for the use of Chwila) Chwila, 14 , 15, 17 April 1922;
 Ibid.;
 Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce...p. 542;
 Ibid.: p. 543;
 Jevrejskaja entsiklopedija...Vol. 1, p. 414
 Ibid.;
 Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce...Vol. 1, p. 543;
 Ibid. p. 544;
 Ibid. p. 544;
 Ibid.;
 The Encyclopaedia Judaica...p. 126;
 Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce...p. 545;
 Yevretskaya entsiklopediya...Vol. 3, p. 703;
 Ibid.;
 Ibid. p.547;
 Ibid.: p.548;
 Ibid.: p. 549;
 J.Tomaszewski. Najnowsze dzieje zydow w Polsce w zarysie do 1950 roku  (Contemporary history of Jews in Poland outlined till 1950) Warsaw: PWN, 1993, pp. 252-253;
 J.Tomaszewski. Najnowsze dzieje zydow w Polsce w zarysie do 1950 roku  (Contemporary history of Jews in Poland outlined till 1950) Warsaw: PWN, 1993, p. 253;
 J. Marcus. Social and Political History of the Jews in Poland, 1919-1939. Berlin: Mouton Publishers, 1983, p. 429;
 Ibid.;
 Polski Slownik Biograficzny...p. 603;
 Yevreyskaya entsiklopediya...Vol. 3, p. 703;
 M.Balaban. Zalmaw, burmistrz kahalu w Drohobyczu w pol. XVII w. (Zalmaw, Jewish community mayor of Drohobych) Dziennik Polski, January 1900;
 Encyclopeadia Judaica...p. 126;
 Ibid.: p. 550;
 J. Marcus. Social and Political History of the Jews in Poland, 1919-1939. Berlin: Mouton Publishers, 1983, p. 262;
 Yevreyskaya entsiklopediya (Jewish Encyclopeadia). Jerusalem, 1988, Vol. 1, p. 77;
 M.Balaban. Smutna rocznica (Sad anniverssary) Chwila, 30 April 1920;
 M.Balaban. Smutna rocznica (Sad anniverssary) Chwila, 30 April 1920, pp. 3-4;
 M.Balaban. Dr Emanuel de Jona, lekarz nadworny Jana Trzecigo (Dr Emanuel de Jona, the court physician of Jan III) Chwila, 4 March 1920, pp. 4-6;
 M.Balaban. Drukarnie hebrajskie w Zolkwie i Lwowie (Jewish Printing Shops in Zolkwa and Lwow) Chwila, 11 April 1920, pp. 5-9;
 M.Balaban. Becal, celnik ziem ruskich (Becal, Celnik of Rus lands) Chwila, 4 May 1920, p.3;

BIBLIOGRAPHY
 

PRIMARY SOURCES:
 
 

1.Balaban, M. Historja i literatura zydowska ze szczegolnem uwzglednieniem historji zydow w Polsce (Jewish history and culture with the detailed review of the history of Jews in Poland). Lwow-Krakow, 1921.

2.Balaban, M. Przewodnik po zydowskich zabytkach Krakowa z 13 rycinami z 24 rytograwjurami na oddzielnych tablicach z 2 planami (Guide on Jewish places and monuments of Krakow). Krakow: KAW, 1990.

3.Balaban, M. Smutna rocznica (Sorrowful annivessary), Chwila, 30 July 1920.

4.Balaban, M. Dr. Emanuel de Jona, lekarz nadworny Jana Trzecigo (Dr. Emanuel de Jona, court physician of John the 3 rd), Chwila,  4 March 1920.

5.Balaban, M. Z wczorajszego Lwowa (From the past of Lwow), Chwila, July - December 1925.

6.Balaban, M. Chassidica. Przeglad literatury o chasydyzmie z lat ostatnich (Hassidica. Review of  recent literature about the Hassidism). Chwila, 7--9, 11, 12, 14, 16-19 July, 1932.

7.Balaban, M. Budowa i ornamentyka synagog w Polsce (Structure and ornamentation of synagogues in Poland), Chwila, 30 December 1925.

8.Balaban, M. Do dziejow Ormian lwowskich. Traktat o asymilacyi (Concernig the history of Armenians in Lwow. Treatise about the assimilation), Chwila 14 January, 1921.

9.Balaban, M. Napoleon a Zydzi (Napoleon and the Jews), Chwila, 30  December 1925.

10.Balaban, M. Zydzi polsko-litewski w pierwszym roku wojny europejskiej 1914-1915. Przeglad bibliograficzny  (Polish Lithuanian Jews in the first year of European War 1914-1915. Bibliographical review). Chwila, August - September 1922.

11.Balaban, M. Auto da Fe w Lwowie w r. 1728 (Auto da Fe in Lviv in 1728).
Chwila, 14 January 1921.

12.Balaban, M. Drukarnie hebrajskie w Zolkwie i Lwowie (Hebrew printing shops in Zovkva and Lviv). Chwila, 11 April 1920.

13.Balaban, M. Nauka Zydowska w Golusie i jej dom w Ojczyznie (Jewish Science in the Dispersion and its House in Motherland) Chwila, 2 April 1925, pp. 9-11.

14.Balaban, M. Zydowska biblioteka gminna we Lwowie. Wspomnienie (Jewish Communla Library in Lviv) Chwila, 7 January 1922, p.2.

15.Balaban, M. Chassidica, przeglad literatury o chasydyzmie z lat ostatnich (Chassidica, the review of the literature on Chassidism from the last years) Chwila, August-September 1922.

16.Balaban, M. Korespondencja Lublinera z Lewelem (Correspondence of Lubliner with Lewel) Miesiecznik Zydowski, no. 4, 1933, pp. 289-321.

17.Balaban, M. Zalmaw, burmistrz kahalu w Drohobyczu w pol. XVII w. (Zalmaw, Jewish community mayor of drohobych) Dziennik Polski, January 1900.

18.Prof Dr. M. Schorr na nowej placowce pracy (Prof. Dr. M. Schorr at the new place of work). Chwila, 18 November, 1923.

19.Schorr, M. Kwestya zydowska w dobie Sejmu Wielkiego, (Jewish question at the time of the Great Seim). Chwila, 13-24 July, 1920.

20.Schorr, M. Palestyna a Babylon w swietlie najnowszych wtkopalisk, (Palestine and Babylon in the light of new archeological excavations,) Chwila, 27, 28, 30 January1922; 1-6 February 1922.

21.Schorr, M. Prawo Mojzesza na tle porownawczem prawodawstw Starozytnego Wschodu (Moses' Law in comparaative perspective with the legislatures of the Ancient Middle East,) Chwila, 3-7, 13, 17, 19-22, 24-29 November 1923.

22.Schorr, M. Radosna Chwila (Joyful moment,) Chwila, 9 December 1923;

23.Schorr, M. Samuel Hirsch Margulies, 1858-1922, (Samuel Hirsch Margulies, 1858-1922). Chwila, 13 May 1922.

24.Schorr, M. Archiwum zydowskiej kolonii wojskowej w Egipcie z V w. (Archiwe of Jewish military colony in Egypt of 5 th century). Lwow, 1912.

25.Schorr, M. Aus der Geschichte der Juden in Przemysl (History of Jews in Przemysl). Vienna: Verlag von R. Lovit, 1915, 28 p.

26. Schorr, M. Pomik prawa staroassyryjskiego z XII w. przed Chr. (Memorial of  Old Assyrian Law of 12 th century B.C.). Lwow: Archiwum Towarystwa Naukowego we Lwowie, 1922.

27.Schorr, M. Problem Chettytow z powodu najnowszego odkrycia lingwistyczno-historycznego (Problem of Hettites due to the newest lingustic-historical discovery).
Kwartalnik Historyczny, Lwow, 1916.

28.Schorr, M. Przyczynki do frazeologii psalmow biblijnych a babilonskich
 ( Articles concernig Biblical nad Babylonian Psalms), Rocznik oryentalistyczny, Krakow, 1914 -1915.

29.Schorr, M. Jezyk hebrajski w Polsce (Hebrew language in Poland), Encycopedya polska (Polish encyclopaedia), Vol. 3 (1915).

30.Schorr, M. Kultura babilonska a starohebrajska (Babilonian and Hebrew culture). Lwow, 1903, 28 p.

31.Schorr, M. Panstwo i spoleczenstwo babilonske w okresie t. zw. dynastyi Hamurabiego okolo 2500 - 2000 pr. Chr.  (Babylonian state and society in times of Hammurabi dynasty of 2500 - 2000 B.C.). Lwow: Drukarnia Ludowa, 1906.

32.Schorr, M. Organizacya Zydow w Polsce od najdawniejszych czasow do r. 1772
(Organisation of Jews in Poland since the earliest times till 1772). Kwartalnik Historyczny, 1899.

33.Schorr M. Kazanie inagauracyjne wygloszone w wiekiej synagodze na Tlomackiem dn. 7. 12. 1923. (Inaugurative message presented at the Great Tlomacki Synagogue on 2.12.1923). Warsaw: Druk. Kupenztocha i Kramaria, 1923, 28 p.

34.Schorr M. Kodeks Hamurabiego a owczesnaa praktyka prawna (Hammurabi Code and the ancient Middle Eastern legal practice). Krakow, 1907;

35.Schorr, M. Wazniejsze kwestyi z historyi semickiego Wschodu (The Important Issues on the History of the Semitic Orient) Lwow: Druk. Zwiazkowa, 1907, 60 p.

36.Schorr, M. Starozytnosci biblijne w swietlie archiwum egipskiego z XIV w. przed Chrystusem (Biblical Antiquities in the Light of Egyptian Archive of 17th cen. B.C.) Lwow: Druk. Zwiazkowa, 1901, 34 p.

37.To live with honour and die with honor. Selected Documents from the Warsaw Ghetto Underground Archives "O. S.' ["Oneg Shabbath"] Jerusalem: Yad Vashem, 1986.

SECONDARY LITERATURE:

38.Almanach szkolnictwa zydowskiego w Polsce (Almanac of Jewish scholarship in Poland). Warsaw: Wyd. Renesans, 1988, Vol. 1.

39.Albright, William Foxwell. Archeologia Palestyny (Archeology of Palestine). Warsaw: PWN, 1964.

40.Balaban,  M. Prace naukowe Prof. Mojzesza Schorra," (Scientific Works of Prof. M. Schorr) In Ksiega Jubileuszowa ku czci prof. Mojzesza Schorra (Anniversary book in memory of Prof. M. Schorr). Warsaw, 1935.

41.Balaban, M. Wazniejsze prace naukowe prof. Mojzesza Schorra (Major scientific works of Prof. M. Schorr) In M. Schorr: Kazanie inaugaracyjne w Wielkiej Synagodze na Tlomackiem...dn. 7 grudnia 1923 (M.Schorr: Inaugurative presentation at the Great Tlomacki Synagogue on Dec. 7th, 1923). Warsaw, 1924.

42.Bilderman, M. Majer Balaban, Historian of Polish Jewry: His Influence on the Younger Generation of Jewish Historians, New York: Methuen, 1976.

43.Eisenbach, A. Jewish Historiography in Interwar Poland in "The Jews of Poland Between Two World Wars" Hanover: University Press of New England, 1991.

44.Kaufman, I. Biblejskaja epokha (Biblical Epoch) in Jevreiskaja istorija i religija (Jewish history and religion). Jerusalem: Lib. Aliya, 1990;

45.Kratkaja Jevrejskaja Entsiklopedija (Short Jewish Encyclopeadia). Vol. 4. Jerusalem, 1988.

46.Marcus, J. Social and Political History of the Jews in Poland 1919-1939. New York: Mouton publishers, 1983.

47.Ostersetzer, Israel. Prof. Mojzesz Schorr: W 60-lecie urodzin (Prof. M. Schorr: on the occasion of the 60th jubilee of his birthday) Miesiecznik Zydowski, 1934.

48.Polski Slownik Biograficzny (Polish Biographical Directory).Vol. 25/4. Warsaw: PAN, 1994.

49.Schulkin M. Prof. Majer Balaban: w stolecie urodzin (Prof. M. Balaban: on the occasion of his centennial anniversary) BZIN, 1977.

50.Tomaszewski, J. Najnowsze dzieje zydow w Polsce w zarysie do roku 1950 (Contemporary history of Jews in Poland outlined till 1950) Warsaw: PWN, 1993.

51.Trunk, I. Majer Balaban: den forsher fun der koolsher organizatye un oytomye in amolikn Poyln (Meir Balaban: the researcher of the Jewish self-administration system in Poland) in Yivo bletter, 1973.