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Mordovtsev, Daniil Lukich°


MORDOVTSEV, DANIIL LUKICH ° (1830–1905), Russian and Ukrainian writer who preached the return of the Jews to Ereẓ Israel. Mordovtsev was a Ukrainian and one of the leaders of the Ukrainian nationalist movement throughout his life. Until 1866 he worked in various government offices, and afterward engaged in his historical and literary work. In his time he was one of the few liberals in Russia who openly sympathized with the Jews. In 1873 he began to publish articles refuting prevalent accusations by Russians, including liberals, against the Jews, and in particular attacked anti-Jewish instigators. In the summer of 1881 he visited Ereẓ Israel and in Jerusalem met a number of Jewish refugees who had fled from the pogrom in Odessa. In his series of stories and travel impressions he repeatedly expressed the demand that the nations of the world restore Ereẓ Israel to the Jews. His literary activity in this area increased especially after the pogroms of the early 1880s in Russia. In his historical stories, he censured the Ukrainian pogroms against the Jews. His stories on Jewish topics include Za chto zhe? ("Why?" 1884); Mezhdu molotom i zakovalney ("Between Hammer and Anvil," 1891), and Irod ("Herod"). These stories were translated into Hebrew and Yiddish (some by Z. *Shazar). His support for the Jewish national movement continued until his death and became especially strong from the time of the appearance of political Zionism.


I. Maor, in: Shivat Ẓiyyon, 2–3 (1951/52) 69–82; M. Ben Hillel ha-Kohen, In Mame Loshn (1935), 237–55.

[Getzel Kressel]

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