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HAMBURG. Located along the Elbe River in northern Germany, Hamburg developed into one of the largest cities of the Holy Roman Empire. Between the latter half of the fifteenth century and the era of the Thirty Years' War (16181648), it grew from about 10,000 to 50,000 inhabitants. In the early eighteenth century that number had risen to 75,000. By 1787 it reached 100,000, and in the era of French expansion, 130,000. The growth was not steady; for example, the plague years 1712 and 1713 cost many thousands of lives.

The city was a largely independent republic governed by a council of citizens, predominantly merchants and lawyers by profession. Since 1483 the right of political participation had been granted to eligible property-owning male inhabitants who swore an oath of citizenship. The year 1528 marked the successful and peaceful establishment of Lutheranism as the city's official religion, after which only Lutherans enjoyed full political privileges. The reformer Johann Bugenhagen (14851558) composed a church ordinance for Hamburg, which was adopted in 1529. That year the city also underwent a major constitutional reform. Thereafter, the government was composed of a council (Rat or Senat) of twenty-four members and a college (Kollegium) of 144 citizens' representatives, who came in equal numbers from the four parish districts of St. Jacobi, St. Nikolai, St. Petri, and St. Katarinen. With the addition in 1685 of a fifth district, St. Michaelis, the citizens' college grew to 180 members.

Constitutional tensions grew throughout the seventeenth century because some factions of the citizenry felt the council wielded power autocratically. A major crisis came in 1699 when the traditional constitutional order was suspended under pressure from the guilds. The period of political experimentation ended in 1708 when imperial troops arrived to reestablish the old order. The result was the constitutional recess of 1712, in which council and citizens' college were declared equal partners in Hamburg's governance. This arrangement lasted until 1806.

Since the late fifteenth century the Danish monarchy had had hopes of forcing Hamburg to submit to its authority, and Danish forces even laid siege to the city unsuccessfully in 1686. The 1626 completion of the city's modern fortress walls proved an advantage against Danish challenges, as well as against the conflicts of the Thirty Years' War, during which Hamburg remained neutral and unscathed. Although Hamburg was ostensibly in the imperial orbit for most of the early modern era, it was not until 1768, when Denmark recognized the city's independence, that it officially joined the ranks of the imperial free cities. Throughout its history Hamburg has been a major commercial port. Until the Hansa dissolved in the seventeenth century, Hamburg was one of the long-standing members of the loose economic and political alliance. In 1558 it opened its stock exchange, the first in a German territory, and in 1619 its first merchant bank was founded. The city's merchants shipped goods all across Europe, and by the end of the eighteenth century destinations included ports worldwide. Other major economic activities included whaling, insurance, sugar refining, textile production, and tobacco preparation.

By the seventeenth century confessional outsiders made up a significant minority of the city's population, and non-Lutherans contributed in important ways to the city's economy. For political and economic reasons the council allowed members of the best established of non-Lutheran communities (Calvinists, Catholics, Jews, and Mennonites) to settle in Hamburg. Nonetheless, because of pressure from Lutheran clergymen, religious minority communities were denied the privilege of practicing religious rites publicly in the city; non-Lutheran religious services were usually held in nearby Altona. This restriction on public worship was removed in 1785 for Calvinists and Catholics only. Non-Lutheran Christians could become citizens, albeit with limited rights of political participation. Probably the city's best-known non-Lutheran resident was the Jewish diarist Glueckel von Hameln (16461724).

Among the city's cultural leaders were Gerhard Schott (16411702), founder of the first public opera in the German territories; the organ builder Arp Schnitger (16481719); and the composers Georg Philipp Telemann (16811767) and Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (17141788). Founded in 1765, the Hamburger Gesellschaft zur Beförderung der Künste und nützlichen Gewerbe (Hamburg society for the encouragement of the arts and useful crafts; also known as the Patriotische Gesellschaft or Patriotic Society) stands out among many institutions of Enlightenment-era public life. Its founding members included the mathematics professor Johann Georg Büsch (17281800), the philosopher Hermann Samuel Reimarus (16941768), and the architect Ernst Georg Sonnin (17131794). The literary masters Gotthold Ephraim Lessing (17291781) and Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock (17241803) both spent time in Hamburg. Philipp Otto Runge (17771810) is one of Hamburg's best-known painters.

See also Free and Imperial Cities ; Hansa ; Holy Roman Empire ; Lutheranism .


Jochmann, Werner, and Hans-Dieter Loose, eds. Hamburg: Geschichte der Stadt und ihrer Bewohner. 2 vols. Hamburg, 1982.

Kopitzsch, Franklin. Grundzüge einer Sozialgeschichte der Aufklärung in Hamburg und Altona. Hamburg, 1982. Reprint, 1990.

Kopitzsch, Franklin, and Daniel Tilgner, eds. Hamburg- Lexikon. Hamburg, 1998. Reprint, 2000.

Lindemann, Mary. Patriots and Paupers: Hamburg, 1712 1830. New York, 1990.

Whaley, Joachim. Religious Toleration and Social Change in Hamburg, 15291819. Cambridge, U.K., 1985. Reprint, 2002.

Zeitschrift des Vereins für Hamburgische Geschichte. 1841.

Michael D. Driedger

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hamburg and napoleon
citizenship and politics
hamburg as germany's port

Hamburg, a seaport of Germany, is located where two smaller tributaries flow into the Elbe, approximately fifty miles from the North Sea. For most of its long-standing history, Hamburg has been not only a city but also an independent state with its own government, postal system, flag, and mint. Hamburg merchants, acting as intermediaries for Scandinavian, East European, and Atlantic trade, conducted their own foreign policy, mainly with bilateral commercial treaties. Through politics of strict neutrality, they managed to maintain Hamburg's independence against the pressures of its powerful neighbors, Denmark and Prussia.

hamburg and napoleon

During the early stages of the French Revolution, leading Hamburg circles—in accordance with their city's cosmopolitan, republican, and free-press tradition—openly sympathized with Enlightenment ideals of education, religious tolerance, rational administration, and citizen-based government. Their social clubs, reading circles, pamphlets, and newspapers created a lasting basis for enlightened civic engagement. Initially, Hamburg profited from the French Revolutionary wars, filling the vacuum created by Napoleon's imposition of the anti-English Continental Blockade on conquered territories. Hamburg merchants fought hard (and paid belligerents large sums) to preserve the city's neutrality during the subsequent Prussian-Austrian wars against France, a neutrality often condemned by adherents to the German patriotic movement born in the battle against Napoleonic forces.

This prosperity did not last. In 1806, after Prussia's disastrous defeat at Jena, Hamburg was occupied by French troops and incorporated into the Napoleonic Empire. Trade and manufacture slumped sharply with Hamburg's inclusion in the blockade. Hundreds of ships lay idle; thousands of workers lost their jobs. The French also confiscated English goods, conducted house-searches, conscripted inhabitants into the French army, exacted monetary contributions and bribes, and—when the poor protested—executed rioters. Nonetheless, French rule brought one improvement: the French constitution. For the first time, Hamburg inhabitants were granted uniform civil and economic rights, executive and judiciary powers were separated, and the city administration was rationalized. Thus, for instance, Hamburg's 6,500 Jews—Germany's largest Jewish community—were granted civil rights and government representation. Nonetheless, when French troops withdrew after Napoleon's Russian defeat, city inhabitants greeted Lieutenant Friedrich Karl von Tettenborn (1778–1845) and his Russian cavalry with jubilation and quickly restored their own constitution. This was premature. Tettenborn, no stranger to monetary exactions himself, did little to prepare the city for the next French offensive; he departed soon after the French lay siege to Hamburg in May 1813. This marked the beginning of the city's real suffering.

Now under French martial law, Hamburg was forcibly rebuilt—by means of heavy punitive contributions, massive forced labor, and extensive destruction of housing—into a fortress. The resumption of war worsened conditions further. The French confiscated the silver of Hamburg's bank, turned many churches into stables, and collected troops for a last-ditch defense. In December 1813, all inhabitants without supplies of food to last a six months' siege were expelled from the city. Approximately twenty thousand people were left to wander the winter countryside; many died. In early 1814, Allied troops surrounded a city whose population was disease-ridden and starving. The French refused to surrender the city until April 1814—a full month after Paris itself had fallen to the Allies. Hamburg had suffered more in the war than most other European cities; its population, about 130,000 in 1800, was reduced by almost one-fourth.

It took decades for the city to recover, but its strategic location stood it in good stead. The Vienna Congress guaranteed the city's sovereignty; in 1815, Hamburg became one of the Free Cities of the German Confederation. When the war ended, returning merchants could exploit the expansion of Atlantic trade that had followed the independence of North and then South and Central American countries. Hamburg became the major transit port for grain shipments from eastern Europe and for Britain's increasing production of cheap industrial goods; its merchants participated in the growing trade with Asia, Africa, and the East Indies. The harbor was enlarged and modernized. Between 1820 and 1860, the size of the Hamburg merchant fleet doubled; its

tonnage increased more than six-fold. In 1841, the Hamburg Stock Exchange was established. The city's first railways were built shortly thereafter. The Hamburg-American line HAPAG, which was to assume a dominant position in transatlantic shipping, was founded in 1847. The city was badly hit by a fire in 1842, which destroyed 1,749 houses, 102 warehouses, and rendered over one-tenth of the population homeless. The economic prestige of its merchants—one of whom pledged his family fortune as security for loans—helped raise money to rebuild. By 1850, with a population of 170,000, Hamburg was again a preeminent European port.

citizenship and politics

Hamburg's government, however, remained antiquated. Its city charter, which dated from 1712, was based on corporate privileges—the bulk of which were reserved for merchants and property-owning "burghers." To become a burgher, one had to meet strict religious, income, property, and residence criteria, as well as pay a hefty entrance fee. This restricted burghers to a small, exclusive minority with special voting, employment, marriage, and property-holding privileges. Most other inhabitants, being non-burghers, had fewer rights (Jews did not regain equal rights until the 1850s) and no power over city government. This government was divided between a self-recruiting Rat or senate of prominent merchants and lawyers, and ordinary burghers. The former held the highest executive, administrative, and judiciary powers, and ran foreign affairs. Their power was inadequately balanced by Hamburg's burghers. These were organized in various parish-based administrative bodies; they also met in large assemblies. In 1860, these assemblies were transformed into a Bürgerschaft or City Council, elected by intricate combinations of ordinary, property-owning, and Senate-appointed administrative burghers. This was Hamburg's only representative body.

Political influence was thus the purview of a small minority. Although the Hamburg constitution of 1860 abolished burghers' economic-corporatist privileges and abrogated the judicial power of the senate, both retained their political monopoly. The result was strongly elitist: in 1879, for instance, 22,000 burghers—out of an adult male population of 103,000 and a total population of 450,000—could vote for and participate in the city-state's government.

This mercantile-burgher oligarchy had its challengers. An anti-elite, guild-friendly burgher group had long sought to curtail the power of Hamburg's free-trading merchants. This division within Hamburg's government helped fuel the (brief and unsuccessful) 1848–1849 revolution. The protectionists were defeated in the 1850s, as industrialization and favorable trade conditions promoted the abolition of guilds and tariffs throughout German states. A liberal, professional intelligentsia with a large following among educational and artisans' organizations then raised the banner of democratization. By the 1870s, their leadership had been usurped by Hamburg's social democrats, whose further development of artisans' and workers' organizations soon made them the largest oppositional group in Hamburg. During the 1890s, socialists' democratic challenge to Hamburg's oligarchy was unattractively echoed by petty-bourgeois and white-collar nationalists within the anti-Semitic German-Social Reform Party.

All these sought to broaden the Hamburg franchise, break the government oligarchy, and, not least, gain insight and power over the Hamburg administration. For Hamburg was also administered by burghers—amateurs appointed by the senate or by various parish and neighborhood burgher associations. The resultant unsupervised multitude of administrative mini-jurisdictions was a byword for sluggishness and opacity. Some reforms had been undertaken after the 1842 fire. But both administration and government ignored Hamburg's recurrent and deadly cholera epidemics (which primarily hit the poor) until, in 1892, 17,000 people sickened and 8,600 died. The appalling housing and sanitary conditions exposed by subsequent investigations promoted reconsideration of government scope and responsibility. It was decided to ease burgher entrance requirements. In 1894, around 14 percent of the adult male population could vote in city elections. By 1904, the figure had risen to 23 percent.

hamburg as germany's port

These changes reflected Hamburg's new position as a self-administering city within the new German Empire (formed in 1871). The loss of Free City status had been less painful than anticipated. Victories over Austria and France, increased German patriotism, and the security of belonging to a major power outweighed the suspicion that cosmopolitan, republican Hamburg merchants felt toward the Prussian aristocrat Otto von Bismarck (1815–1898). Hamburg's increasing importance as a trading center and the city's acceptance, in 1888, of the Zollverein or German Customs Union (encouraged by imperial co-finance of a massive, modern Free Harbor) soon reconciled it to the empire. By the 1890s, imperial plans for both colonies and a vastly expanded navy gained enthusiastic support from leading Hamburg circles.

Incorporation into the empire gave Hamburg three seats in the German parliament, which was elected by an all-male suffrage. The experience of national elections proved traumatic, as Hamburg's social democrats quickly conquered the city's three parliamentary districts (the third was taken in 1890). The fact that Hamburg was thus represented, at the national level, by elements regarded as foreign to the burgher population, reinforced antisocialist sentiment at home.

The powerful Hamburg socialist vote reflected the city's economic modernization. Incorporation into the empire had stimulated both trade and industry. Shipbuilding expanded dramatically; by 1900, Hamburg's more than eighty shipyards were dominated by three giants, building, among other things, warships for an increasingly expansionist Germany. The Hamburg steamship fleet increased more than five-fold between 1880 and 1907. Great shipping concerns (among them HAPAG, now the world's largest) transported both goods and people; between 1870 and 1914, over 2.3 million emigrants passed through Hamburg. In 1914, Hamburg placed third—after London and New York—among the harbors of the world.

Hamburg was also industrializing. In 1866, 600 factories had employed 18,000 workers; by 1914, 5,000 plants employed 150,000. Hamburg's food, alcohol, and tobacco-processing industries, always important to the city's economy, had expanded in scope and variety, and were complemented by industries processing jute, rubber, oil, and other raw materials, often for re-export within the Free Harbor itself. By the 1880s, chemical, electrical, metal, and machinery factories further diversified Hamburg's economy. This expansion was fueled by massive work-force immigration. In 1860, 250,000 people lived in Hamburg; by 1890, 620,000. In 1905, the population exceeded 800,000; on the eve of World War I, Hamburg had more than a million inhabitants. Hamburg's inefficient and narrow government made it difficult to adjust police, housing, educational, or welfare institutions to this rapid expansion. Workers turned to self-help, establishing a self-contained subculture of "red" cooperatives, insurance associations, and leisure and educational organizations that reinforced Hamburg's social divides.

The depth of this division was evident in 1906. By then, both social democrats and populist anti-Semites had entered city council elections. The still-narrow franchise severely limited their chances of success. The anti-Semites peaked in 1901 at three representatives (out of a council of 160). The social democrats did better, gaining thirteen seats in 1904. Despite these low numbers, many Hamburg burghers were appalled at the "introduction of race-hate and class-hate" into the city council. In 1906, Hamburg's municipal electorate was, therefore, again narrowed: the votes of poorer burghers were devalued. This "suffrage robbery" was not soon forgotten by Hamburg's working classes. The continuing division between Hamburg workers and burghers would, in fact, stamp Hamburg's postwar history.

See alsoBerlin; Cities and Towns; Denmark; Germany; Prussia; Trade and Economic Growth; Zollverein.


Baasch, Ernst. Geschichte Hamburgs 1814–1918. 2 volumes. Gotha, 1924–1925.

Evans, Richard J. Death in Hamburg: Society and Politics in the Cholera Years 1830–1910. London, 1990.

Herzig, Arno, Dieter Langewiesche, and Arnold Sywottek. Arbeiter in Hamburg: Unterschichten, Arbeiter, und Arbeiterbewegung seit dem ausgehenden 18. Jahrhundert. Hamburg, 1983.

Hurd, Madeleine. Public Spheres, Public Mores, and Democracy: Hamburg and Stockholm, 1870–1914. Ann Arbor, Mich., 2000.

Jochmann, Werner, ed. Hamburg: Geschichte der Stadt und ihrer Bewohner. Volume 2: Vom Kaiserreich bis zur Gegenwart. Hamburg, 1986.

Kleßmann, Eckart. Geschichte der Stadt Hamburg. Hamburg, 1981.

Liedtke, Rainer. "Germany's Door to the World: A Haven for Jews? Hamburg, 1590–1933." Jewish Culture and History 4, no. 2 (2001): 75–86.

Lindemann, Mary. Patriots and Paupers: Hamburg, 1712–1830. New York, 1990.

Loose, Hans-Dieter, ed. Hamburg: Geschichte der Stadt und ihrer Bewohner. Volume 1: Vom den Anfängen bis zur Reichsgründung. Hamburg, 1982.

Lüth, Erich. Hamburg: 1870–1910. Frankfurt, 1979.

Morris, Jonathan. "Hamburg, Health, and Bourgeois Liberalism." Journal of Urban History 21, no. 2 (1995): 256–264.

Pelc, Ortwin, ed. Hamburg: die Stadt im 20. Jahrhundert. Hamburg, 2002.

Schmidt, Burghart. Hamburg im Zeitalter der Französischen Revolution und Napoleons. Hamburg, 1998.

Schramm, Percy Ernst. Neun Generationen: Dreihundert Jahre deutscher "Kulturgeschichte" im Lichte der Schick-sale einer Hamburger Bürgerfamilie (1648–1948). 2 volumes. Göttingen, 1963–1964.

Schulz, Andreas. "Weltbürger und Geldaristokraten: Hanseatisches Bürgertum im 19. Jahrhundert." Historische Zeitschrift 259 no. 3 (1994): 637–670.

——. "Liberalismus in Hamburg und Bremen zwischen Restauration und Reichsgründung (1830–1870)." Historische Zeitschrift, supplement 19 (1995): 135–160.

Sommer, Theo. Hamburg: Weltstadt im Wellengang der Zeiten. Hamburg, 2004.

Stammer, Wilhelm Chr. K. Hamburgs Werften 1635–1993. Hamburg, 1994.

Teuteberg, Hans J. "Die Entstehung des Modernen Hamburger Haffens (1866–1896)." Tradition 17, nos. 5–6 (1972): 256–291.

Trautmann, Günter. "Liberalismus, Arbeiterbewegung und Staat in Hamburg und Schleswig-Holstein 1862–1869." Archiv für Sozialgeschichte 15 (1975): 51–110.

Madeleine Hurd

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HAMBURG , city and state in Germany, including the cities of *Altona and *Wandsbek from 1937.

The Sephardi Community

The first Jews to settle in Hamburg were Portuguese and Spanish Marranos, who arrived via the Netherlands at the end of the 16th century and at first sought to conceal their religion. When it was discovered that they had been observing Jewish customs, some of the inhabitants demanded their expulsion, but the city council, pointing to the economic benefits accruing from their presence, opposed the measure. Among the Jews were financiers (some of whom took part in the founding of the Bank of Hamburg in 1619), shipbuilders, importers (especially of *sugar, coffee, and *tobacco from the Spanish and Portuguese colonies), weavers, and goldsmiths. In 1612 the Jews of Hamburg paid an annual tax of 1,000 marks and by 1617 this sum was doubled. The kingdoms of Sweden, Poland, and Portugal appointed Jews as their ambassadors in Hamburg. Those who had come to Hamburg from Spain and Portugal continued to speak the languages of their native lands for two centuries and about 15 books in Portuguese and Spanish were printed in Hamburg from 1618 to 1756. (From 1586 Hebrew books, especially the books of the Bible, had been published in Hamburg by Christian printers, mostly with the help of Jewish personnel.)

As early as 1611 Hamburg had three synagogues, whose congregations jointly owned burial grounds in nearby Altona. In 1652 the three congregations combined under the name of Beth Israel. Uriel da *Costa lived in Hamburg in 1616–17; the local physician Samuel da *Silva wrote a pamphlet attacking him; the excommunication of da Costa by R. Leone *Modena was read publicly in the Hamburg synagogue. Shabbateanism swept the community in 1666; so certain were they of the imminence of the Messiah that the governing board of the community announced that the communal buildings were for sale. The rabbi, Jacob b. Aaron *Sasportas, was one of the few not carried away by the prevailing enthusiasm. At that time the Sephardi community, consisting of about 120 families, was still the only acknowledged Jewish community in Hamburg. When in 1697 the city unexpectedly raised the annual tax levied against the Jews to 6,000 marks, the majority of the rich Jews of Hamburg (most of whom belonged to the Spanish-Portuguese congregation) moved to Altona and Amsterdam.

Among the prominent Jews of Spanish and Portuguese origin who lived in Hamburg were the physician and author Rodrigo de Castro (1550–1627), R. Joseph Solomon *Delmedigo (1622–25 in Hamburg), the physician and lexicographer Benjamin *Mussafia (1609–1672), the grammarian and writer Moses Gideon Abudiente (1602–1688), the rabbi and writer Abraham de Fonseca (d. 1651), and the poet Joseph *Ẓarefati (d. 1680).

The Ashkenazi Community

From about 1600, German Jews were admitted to Wandsbek and in 1611 some of them settled in Altona, both cities under Danish rule. By 1627 German Jews began to settle in Hamburg itself, although on festivals they continued to worship at Altona, where the Danish king had permitted the official establishment of a congregation and the building of a synagogue in 1641. They submitted their disputes to the jurisdiction of the rabbi of the Altona congregation. Many Jews, fleeing from persecutions in Ukraine and Poland in 1648 arrived in Hamburg where they were helped by the resident Jews. However, most of these refugees soon left for Amsterdam since at that time the Christian clergy in Hamburg was inciting the inhabitants to expel the Ashkenazi Jews from the city, an expulsion which took place in 1649. Most went to Altona and a number to Wandsbek; only a few remained in Hamburg, residing in the homes of the Spanish-Portuguese Jews. Within a few years many of those who had been driven out returned to Hamburg, and in 1656 a number of refugees from *Vilna also found asylum there.

Most Ashkenazi Jews in Hamburg at that time were Danish subjects and officially belonged to the Jewish community of either Altona or Wandsbek, while others had officially registered as servants in one of Hamburg's Sephardi households to obtain legal status in the city. These "Tudescos" formed a congregation of their own. In 1671 the three Ashkenazi congregations – Altona, Hamburg, and Wandsbek – united to form the ahw congregation, with the seat of their rabbinate in Altona. One of the most famous rabbis of the merged congregation was Jonathan *Eybeschuetz who was appointed to the post in 1750. His equally famous adversary, Jacob *Emden, lived in Altona. R. Raphael b. Jekuthiel *Kohen, who served the community for 23 years, was one of the fiercest opponents of *Mendelssohn's translation of the Pentateuch (1783). The ahw congregation ceased to exist in 1811 when the French authorities imposed a single consistorial organization; the Ashkenazim and Sephardim united to form one congregation, the Altona community retaining its own rabbinate which was also recognized by the Jews of Wandsbek until 1864.

Around 1800, about 6,300 Ashkenazi and 130 Portuguese Jews lived in Hamburg, accounting for around 6 percent of the population. During the French occupation (1811–14), the Jews officially enjoyed full equality but suffered greatly under Marshal Davoust's reign of terror. In 1814, when the city had regained its independence, the Jews were again denied civil rights. The *Hep! Hep! riots of 1819 were especially severe in Hamburg, and similar outbreaks occurred in 1830 and 1835. While no ghetto or Jewish quarter existed in Hamburg, the Jews' right of residence was effectively limited to two areas until 1842, when large parts of the city were destroyed by fire. By 1850 they were granted citizenship, due in large measure to the efforts of Gabriel *Riesser, a native of Hamburg.

The Reform movement, which began in Berlin, eventually reached Hamburg. A Reform temple was dedicated in 1818, and in 1819 a new prayerbook was published to accord with the liturgical ritual of the new congregation. The rabbinate in Hamburg published the opinions of noted Jewish scholars to discredit the temple (titled Elleh Divrei ha-Berit, Altona, 1819) and prohibited the use of its prayer book. Isaac *Bernays, leader of the community from 1821 to 1849, espoused the cause of "modern Orthodoxy" and sought to endow the traditional divine service with greater beauty. In his day controversy flared up again when the Reform congregation occupied a new building and the more radically abridged and revised version of its prayerbook Siddur ha-Tefillah was issued (1844). At the time the Orthodox rabbi was Jacob *Ettlinger, founder of an anti-Reform journal.

Other German Jews who lived in Hamburg included Glueckel of *Hameln, the merchant and philanthropist Salomon *Heine (the uncle of Heinrich Heine), Moses Mendelssohn, the poets Naphtali Herz *Wessely and Shalom b. Jacob ha-Kohen, Isaac *Halevy, the author of Dorot ha-Rishonim, the art historian A. *Warburg, the philosopher Ernst *Cassirer, the psychologist William *Stern, Albert *Ballin, and the financiers Max *Warburg and Karl *Melchior. Among Orthodox rabbis of recent times worthy of note is Nehemiah *Nobel and among the Reform, C. *Seligmann and P. *Rieger. In 1884 the fortnightly Laubhuette and in 1900 the weekly *Israelitisches Familienblatt began to be issued in Hamburg. The municipal library and the library of the University of Hamburg contain a large number of Hebrew manuscripts, listed by M. *Steinschneider. Nearly 400 Hebrew books were printed in Hamburg in the 17th–19th centuries. In the 19th century, the Jewish printers issued mainly prayer books, the Pentateuch, mystic lore, and popular literature.

The Jewish congregation of greater Hamburg was the fourth largest community in Germany. In 1866 there were 12,550 Jews at Hamburg and in 1933 about 19,900 (1.7% of the general population), including more than 2,000 at Altona. The last rabbi was Joseph *Carlebach, who was deported in 1942 and killed by the Nazis.

Holocaust Period

In the years 1933–37 more than 5,000 Jews emigrated; on Oct. 28, 1938, about 1,000 Polish citizens were expelled. The pogrom of Kristallnacht (Nov. 9–10, 1938), in which most synagogues were looted and closed down, caused an upsurge of emigration. In 1941, 3,148 Jews were deported to Riga, Lodz, and Minsk. In July 1942, 1,997 Jews were deported to *Auschwitz and *Theresienstadt. Nearly 8,900 Hamburg Jews lost their lives in the Nazi era (153 mentally ill were executed and 308 committed suicide), including those deported from places of refuge in Western Europe after the Nazi occupation. In this period the community was led by Max Plaut and Leo Lippmann (who committed suicide in 1943). A few hundred Jews, privileged or of mixed marriage, outlived the war. A concentration camp, Neuengamme, was situated near the city. A total of 106,000 inmates passed through its gates and more than half of them perished.

Since World War ii

On May 3, 1945, Hamburg was liberated by British troops who offered aid to the few hundred Jewish survivors. On September 18 a Jewish community was organized, which reopened the cemetery, old age home, mikveh, and hospital soon after. By March 18, 1947 the community totaled 1,268, its numbers changing due to emigration, immigration, and a high mortality rate. In January 1970 there were 1,532 Jews in Hamburg, two-thirds of whom were above 40 years old. In 1960 a 190-bed hospital was opened and a large modern synagogue consecrated. Herbert Weichmann (b. 1896) was elected Buergermeister in 1965. An institute for German-Jewish history was founded in 1966. Within the Jewish community, several hundred Iranian Jews have formed a distinctive element during the last decades. As a result of the immigration of Jews from the former Soviet Union, the number of community members rose from 1,344 in 1989 to 5,019 in 2003.


H. Kellenbenz, Sephardim an der unteren Elbe… (1958); A. Cassuto, Gedenkschrift anlaesslich des 275-jaehrigen Bestehens der portugiesisch-juedischen Gemeinde in Hamburg… (1927); M. Grunwald, Portugiesengraeber auf deutscher Erde… (1902); M. Grunwald, Hamburgs deutsche Juden bis zur Aufloesung der Dreigemeinden… (1904); O. Wolfsberg et al., Die Drei-Gemeinde… Altona-Hamburg-Wandsbeck (1960); H. Gonsierowski, Die Berufe der Juden Hamburgs von der Einwanderung bis zur Emanzipation (1927); L. Dukes, Uebersicht aller… Anstalten… Vereine… Stiftungen der Deutsch-und der Portugiesisch-israelitischen Gemeinde in Hamburg (1841); J.S. Schwabacher, Geschichte und rechtliche Gestaltung der portugiesisch-juedischen und der Deutsch-israelitischen Gemeinde zu Hamburg (1914); Glueckel von Hameln, Life of Glueckel of Hameln… (1962); E. Lueth, Hamburgs Juden in der Heine-Zeit (1961); H. Krohn, Die Juden in Hamburg, 18001850… (1967); E. Duckesz, Iwoh lemoschaw… (1903); H. Goldstein (ed.), Die juedischen Opfer des Nationalsozialismus in Hamburg (1965); B. Brilling in: Zeitschrift des Vereins fuer Hamburgische Geschichte 55 (1969), 219–44. add. bibliography: M. Studemund-Halévy, Bibliographie zur Geschichte der Juden in Hamburg (1994); H. Krohn, Die Juden in Hamburg … 18481918 (1974); I. Stein, Juedische Baudenkmaeler in Hamburg (1984); I. Lorenz, Die Juden in Hamburg zur Zeit der Weimarer Republik, 2 vols. (1987); P. Freimark and A. Herzig (ed.), Die Hamburger Juden in der Emanzipationsphase (1989); Die Juden in Hamburg 15901990 (1991); I. Lorenz and J. Berkemann, Streitfall juedischer Friedhof Ottensen, 2 vols. (1995); M. Studemund-Halévy, Biographisches Lexikon der Hamburger Sefarden (2000); J. Braden, Hamburger Judenpolitik im Zeitalter lutherischer Orthodoxie (2001); F. Bajohr, Die Deportation der Hamburger Juden (20022); A. Buettner, Hoffnungen einer Minderheit (2003).

[Zvi Avneri /

Stefan Rohrbacher (2nd ed.)]

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Hamburg. N. German city and port with long mus. tradition. Famous figures in its church mus. history who held office of Musikdirektor der Hauptkirchen incl. Sartorius (1604–37), Selle (1638–63), Telemann (1721–67), C. P. E. Bach (1767–88), and C. F. G. Schwencke (1788–1822). In 17th cent. Hamburg was leading centre of N German org. mus. Schnitger (1648–1719) was important org. builder and among distinguished orgs. were the Praetorius brothers, Reincken, and Lübeck. Became opera centre in 1678. Keiser, who moved to Hamburg in 1695, wrote over 50 operas for the company he directed from 1703 to 1706, with Handel as apprentice. Telemann wrote several operas for Hamburg. In 19th cent., Bernhard Pollini (Pohl) from 1874 established a Wagnerian reputation and engaged Mahler as cond. (1891–7). Later conds. incl. Klemperer (1910–12), Pollak (1917–31), and Böhm (1931–4). Opera house bombed 1943, rebuilt 1955. Conds. after 1945 incl. Arthur Gruber (1946–50), Leopold Ludwig (1951–71), Horst Stein (1972–7), Christoph von Dohnányi (1977–84), and Gerd Albrecht from 1988. Producers such as Günther Rennert and intendants such as Tietjen (1954–9), R. Liebermann (1959–73), August Everding (1973–7), and Peter Ruzicka (from 1988), lifted Hamburg to a leading place in European opera. Orch. concerts developed c.1660. C. P. E. Bach arr. concerts from 1768 for the next 20 years. Hamburg Philharmonic Orch. gave first concert in Jan. 1829 but was eclipsed from 1886 by concerts given by the opera orch. under Hans von Bülow. But Muck from 1922 transformed the playing until, when he retired in 1933, the orch. was merged with the opera orch. under joint cond. of Jochum and Schmidt-Isserstedt. After 1945 conds. incl. Keilberth and Sawallisch. In 1945 Schmidt-Isserstedt became chief cond. of Hamburg radio orch. which later toured Eng., Russ., and USA. Known as North German Radio SO from 1951. Gave f.p. (concert) of Schoenberg's Moses und Aron, 1954. Atzmon was chief cond. 1972–9, Tennstedt 1979–82, Wand 1982–91, John Eliot Gardiner from 1991.

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HamburgBerg, burg, erg, exergue •Hamburg • Battenberg • Strasberg •Habsburg • Salzburg • Strasbourg •Pressburg • Spielberg • Tilburg •Lindbergh, Strindberg •Wittenberg • Vicksburg • Pittsburgh •Ginsberg • Johannesburg •Königsberg • Gettysburg • Freiburg •Heidelberg • Heisenberg • iceberg •Bromberg, homburg, Romberg •Gothenburg • Warburg • Jo'burg •Gutenberg • Duisburg • Magdeburg •Brandenburg • Hindenburg •Mecklenburg • Wallenberg •Orenburg • Nuremberg •Luxembourg • St Petersburg •Williamsburg • Schoenberg •Würzburg • Esbjerg

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Hamburg City, state, and port on the River Elbe, n Germany. Founded in the 9th century by Charlemagne, it became one of the original members of the Hanseatic League. Severely bombed during World War II, it is now Germany's second largest city. It is a notable cultural centre, with an opera house, art gallery and university (1919). Industries: electronic equipment, brewing, publishing, chemicals. Pop. (1999) 1,701,800.