Hillels, Shelomo

views updated


HILLELS, SHELOMO (1873–1953), Hebrew writer. Hillels was raised in Bessarabia, and he served as principal of the Jewish public school of Marcolesti (1902–17). In 1918 he headed the Office of the Federated Councils which was established in Romania to aid the refugees fleeing the Ukraine in the aftermath of the Russian Revolution. In 1921 he moved to Kishinev where he was appointed supervisor of the *Tarbut Hebrew schools in Bessarabia. In 1925 he settled in Palestine where he taught in the Mikveh Israel agricultural school (1925–35) and was the director of Beit Bialik (Bialik House) in Tel Aviv (1935–39). During World War ii he lived in the United States. His early pieces appeared in the 1890s in Ha-Ẓefirah and in Ha-Meliẓ. However, his best works were written after he went to Palestine. His novel Har ha-Keramim (Mount of Vineyards, 1931, rev. ed. 1951), a realistic portrait of Bessarabian Jewish farmers, won great acclaim. He wrote stories of Jewish life during the revolutions and pogroms in Bessarabia and the Ukraine: Be-Himmot Areẓ (When Earth Totters, 1935); Taḥat Shemei Besarabyah (1942); Arẓah (1945); and an autobiography, Tabba'ot be-Sharsheret (Links in a Chain, 1950). His writings are realistic, and tempered by a profound faith in man. His collected works appeared in six volumes (1950–53). To mark his 80th birthday, the commemorative volume Shai li-Shelomo (A Tribute to Solomon) was published by K.A. Bertini and Eliyahu Meitus in 1953.


Kressel, Leksikon, 1 (1965), 610.

[Gedalyah Elkoshi]