Skip to main content



International Jewish sports organizations.

Named for the Judean heroes who fought Antiochus in the second century b.c.e., the Maccabi World Union began in 1895 with the formation of clubs like the Israel Gymnastics Club in Istanbul and others in Bucharest, Berlin, and Saint Petersburg. By World War I, membership in the Turkish Maccabi was two thousand.

Although not ideologically a Zionist movement, the Maccabi was part of the phenomenon of a rising Jewish national consciousness during the late nineteenth and first half of the twentieth centuries. Maccabi clubs became important institutions in British-mandated Palestine, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, and Libya. There was a popular Maccabi club in Baghdad during the late 1920s, but it ceased to be officially active as anti-Zionist Arab nationalism turned virulent. Along with groups such as the Union Universelle de la Jeunesse Juive (Universal Union of Jewish Youth), Jewish Scouts, cultural associations, and modern Hebrew-language schools, the Maccabi helped to foster a feeling of solidarity among Middle Eastern and North African Jewry with their coreligionists worldwide, as well as sympathy for Zionism.


Stillman, Norman A. The Jews of Arab Lands in Modern Times. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 1991.

norman stillman

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Maccabi." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . 20 Apr. 2019 <>.

"Maccabi." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . (April 20, 2019).

"Maccabi." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. . Retrieved April 20, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.