Dollfuss, Engelbert°

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DOLLFUSS, ENGELBERT ° (1892–1934), chancellor of Austria and leader of the *Christian Social party there. He served as chancellor from 1932 until his murder in an attempted Nazi putsch. An antisemite, Dollfuss had been instrumental in excluding from membership all students "tainted with Jewish blood" at a Catholic students' congress in 1920. During his chancellorship a number of covert anti-Jewish measures were introduced, and after the crushing defeat of the Social Democrats in February 1934 he refused to see a Jewish delegation, remarking that the Jews should be pleased that he was too busy to deal with Jewish affairs. However, Austrian Jewry regarded him as a "bulwark against persecution and the horrors of a Nazi regime" (jc, July 27, 1934) because of his energetic stand against Nazism. Dollfuss issued several statements against racial antisemitism and was not connected with any official action against Jews. His opponents considered the Jews one of the pillars of his regime. His murder made him the symbol of the fight against Nazism. After his murder the Zionist leadership of the Jewish community and Chief Rabbi David Feuchtwang praised Dollfuss as the renewer of the Austrian state and organized mourning services in the synagogues.


Karbach, in: jsos, 2 (1940), 255–9; G. Shepherd, Dollfuss (Eng., 1961); H. Greive, Theologie und Ideologie, Katholizismus und Judentum in Deutschland und Oesterreich 1918–1935 (1969), index. add. bibliography: C.A. Gulick, Austria from Habsburg to Hitler (1948).