Bodenschatz, Johann Christoph Georg°

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BODENSCHATZ, JOHANN CHRISTOPH GEORG ° (1717–1797), German Protestant theologian. Born in Hof, Bavaria, Bodenschatz received his early education at Gera, where through his teacher Schleusner he became interested in biblical and Oriental subjects, later studying Oriental languages at the University of Jena. He entered the church, became vicar at Uttenreuth, and in 1780 superintendent at Baiersdorf. In his writings Bodenschatz described contemporary Jewish customs in Germany faithfully and without prejudice. His Kirchliche Verfassung der heutigen Juden, sonderlich derer in Deutschland (4 vols., Erlangen and Coburg, 1748–49), is an important historical source for Jewish life in Germany in the mid-18th century. A second edition of the book was published in Frankfurt in 1756 under the title Aufrichtig teutsch redender Hebraeer. Both editions are rich in engravings depicting subjects drawn from contemporary Jewish life in Germany. Some of these engravings were taken from B. Picart's Cérémonies et coûtumes religieuses de tous les peuples (1723–37). Bodenschatz is said to have made elaborate models of Noah's Ark and the Tabernacle.


adb, 3 (1876), 7; I. Abrahams, By-Paths in Hebraic Bookland (1920), 160–5.