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KISCH , prominent family in Prague. The name derived from the village of Chyse (Chiesch) in western Bohemia, from where the family came in the 17th century. For about 200 years it held the license for the only pharmacy in the Jewish quarter of Prague. One of its members was the physician abraham kisch (1725–1803), the first Prague Jew to receive a doctorate in medicine (at Halle University in 1749). The founder of the Jewish hospital in Breslau (Wroclaw), he was head of the Prague community's hospital. Abraham Kisch taught Latin to Moses *Mendelssohn and championed the admission of Jewish students to the universities. joseph kisch opened the first modern private school in the Jewish quarter. His son enoch heinrich (1841–1918), a physician, specialized in balneology and was active in the development of the Bohemian spas, especially Marienbad, where he also directed the Jewish hospice. His memoirs, Erlebtes und Erstrebtes (1914), are an important source for the history of Jewish Prague after the 1848 Revolution. When the Jews were expelled from Prague by Maria Theresa (1744), members of the family went to Holland and from there to England, where they founded other branches of the family (see *Kisch (British family)).


G. Kisch, Die Prager Universitaet und die Juden (1935, repr. 1969), 27ff., 128–38; R. Kestenberg-Gladstein, Neuere Geschichte der Juden in den boehmischen Laendern, 1 (1969), index; ej, 10 (1934), 18–22, incl. bibl.; uje, 6 (1942), 400–3, incl. bibl.; L. Fuks, in: Studia Rosenthaliana, 3 (1969), 193–201.

[Meir Lamed]

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