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Fraenkel

FRAENKEL

FRAENKEL (also Frankel, Fraenckel, Frankl , etc.), family widely scattered throughout Central and Eastern Europe. The name first appears in non-Jewish records as a designation for those who had immigrated to Vienna from "Frankenland," in the West. The family is traced back to two scholars in the Swabian town of Wallerstein in the 16th century, Moses ha-Levi Heller and Aaron Heller. Moses was the ancestor of Koppel Fraenkel ha-Levi "the rich" of Vienna (see below). Members of the family married into the patrician Teomim (called Munk in non-Jewish sources), Mirels, and Spiro families of Vienna and Prague. The name begins in Jewish use in the late 17th century, and after the expulsion of the Jews from Vienna (1670) is found throughout Central and Eastern Europe. koppel fraenkel ha-levi (d. 1670), born in Baiersdorf, settled in Vienna around 1635 and became the richest man in the community. His sons david isaac (Seckel), israel, and enoch (Hoenig) wound up the affairs of the Vienna community after the expulsion of 1670, giving 20,000 florins and the crown jewels of the principality of Moldavia (pawned to Koppel in 1665) as a security for the outstanding Jewish debts. They paid the city 4,000 florins for maintenance of the Jewish cemetery. With good conduct certificates, signed by Leopold i, they moved to Fuerth, where David Isaac became head of the community. Israel subsequently officiated as rabbi in Holesov, Uhersky Brod, Pinsk, and Wuerzburg. Enoch taught Hebrew to Johann Christoph *Wagenseil, and in 1683 sent him a letter stressing the importance of tolerance. Sons of Enoch were the ill-fated Ansbach Court Jews Elkan *Fraenkel and his brother Ẓevi Hirsch. gabriel and zacharias fraenkel, wealthy Court Jews to various south German principalities, resided in Fuerth but were not directly related to the Austrian levite branch. A son of David Isaac, issachar berman (d. 1708), became chief rabbi of Schnaittach, Bavaria, *Landesrabbiner of Ansbach, and rabbi of Brandenburg. Two of his sons, judah loeb and aaron levi, who published a collection of seliḥot, settled in Worms, where they and their descendants were prominent in communal life. The most noted of his numerous descendants was the founder of the Breslau seminary, Zacharias *Frankel. isaac seckel *fraenkel, the exponent of extreme Reform Judaism, was probably a descendant, as was L.A. *Frankl, the Austrian writer. Members of the family were among the Jews originally expelled from Vienna who settled in Berlin and Brandenburg, one of whom was appointed leader (Obervorsteher) of all the newly arrived Jews. baermann fraenkel, another prominent communal leader, was fined 20 talers in 1705 for conducting a too-raucous Purim festival. The most famous of the Berlin Fraenkels was David ben Naphtali Hirsch *Fraenkel, teacher of Moses *Mendelssohn and rabbi of Berlin. His grandson jonas fraenckel (1773–1846), a wealthy Breslau merchant and philanthropist, donated the funds for the Breslau seminary. David Fraenkel's brothers, abraham and moses, were partners of V.H. *Ephraim in supplying precious metals to the mint. david ben moses fraenkel (d. 1865), director of the Dessau Franzschule and editor of *Sulamith, was a grandnephew of David Fraenkel; the wife of Leopold *Zunz was his grandniece. The Fraenkel family belonged to the upper stratum of Jewish society and through intermarriage was connected with numerous scholars and community leaders including Avigdor *Kara, Yom Tov Lippmann *Heller, Jacob *Emden, and Baruch *Fraenkel Teomim. All Jews currently named Fraenkel may be descendants of the original Vienna family, though the exact relationship is no longer traceable.

bibliography:

L. Bato, in: ajr Information (July 1964), 12; M.M. Fraenkel-Teomim, Der goldene Tiegel der Familie Fraen kel (1928); Ger., Heb.); A.F. Pribram, Urkunden und Akten zur Ge schichte der Juden in Wien, 1 (1918), index; D. Kaufmann, Die letzte Vertreibung der Juden aus Wien (1889), 144–8; Fraenkel, in: zggjt, 2 (1931/32), 67–80; E.K. Frenkel, Family Tree of R. Moshe Witzenhausen (1969); H. Schnee, Die Hoffinanz und der moderne Staat, 3 (1955), index; 4 (1963), index; S. Stern, Der preussische Staat und die Juden (1962), index.

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