Adler, Lazarus Levi

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ADLER, LAZARUS LEVI (1810–1886), German rabbi and pedagogue. Adler's education included intensive Talmud study in Gelnhausen (Hesse-Nassau) and Wuerzburg and secular studies culminating in a doctorate from the University of Erlangen in 1833. In 1852 Adler became district rabbi of the province of Hesse-Kassel and retained this post until his retirement to Wiesbaden in 1883. Adler represented the more conservative branch of the Reform movement in Germany. While a consistent advocate of religious and educational progress, he opposed measures, such as the abolition of circumcision, which he felt would create an unbridgeable gulf between factions of the Jewish community. He was president of the Kassel rabbinical conference (1868) and an important participant in the German-Jewish synods of Leipzig (1869) and Augsburg (1871). From 1837 to 1839 Adler published Die Synagoge, a periodical containing sermons, popular historical studies, and essays dealing with contemporary Jewish issues. His final religious position is presented in Hillel und Schamai (1878).


M. Kayserling (ed.), Bibliothek juedischer Kanzelredner, 2 (1870), 222–5.

[Michael A. Meyer]