MAGNUS, MARCUS (also known as Mordecai ben Manlin Dessau, Raubach , and Weisel ; d. 1736), court agent of the Prussian crown prince, later King Frederick William i. In his struggle for power in the *Berlin community, his great rival was Jost *Liebmann and later Liebmann's widow, Esther. In 1709 he became head of the community and in 1720 the spokesman for provincial Jewry before the Prussian authorities. After a protracted quarrel, in which both sides appealed to the king, Magnus persuaded the community to erect one public synagogue instead of the private ones maintained by Liebmann and the Veit and Riess families (1712/14). In 1722 he was appointed salaried permanent chief elder of the Berlin community together with Moses Levi *Gomperz, a position he held until his death.
L. Geiger, Geschichte der Juden in Berlin, 1 (1871), 19, 21; H. Schnee, Die Hoffinanz und der moderne Staat…, 1 (1953), 68, 110–1; L. Stern, Der preussische Staat und die Juden, 1 (1962), index; 2 (1962); S. Stern, The Court Jew (1950), 181, 185.
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