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Roest, Meijer Marcus


ROEST, MEIJER MARCUS (1821–1889), Amsterdam bibliographer and journalist. Having been trained as a religious teacher in the Haskalah-oriented Nederlandsch Israëlietisch Seminarium in Amsterdam, Roest became one of the first in the Netherlands to embrace the Wissenschaft des Judentums. From his early thirties he contributed numerous articles to Dutch and Jewish periodicals. From 1855 till 1870 he was employed by the auctioneer Frederik Muller, for whom he compiled catalogues of, inter alia, the Joseph Almanzi and Jacob Emden libraries (Beth ha-Sefer, 1868) and edited the Dutch journal De Navorscher. His magnum opus Catalog der Hebraica und Judaica aus der L. Rosenthal'schen Bibliothek, whose model of description closely resembled that of Joseph Zedner, was published in 1875. After the collection was presented to the Amsterdam municipality and incorporated in the university library, Roest became its first custodian, a position he continued to fill until his death.

In reaction to current Reformist tendencies, Roest founded (together with the seminary's rector and later chief rabbi J.H. *Dünner) the Nieuw Israëlietisch Weekblad (1865) and Israëlietische Nieuwsbode (1875), through which they hoped to promote a moderately conservative Judaism, supported by Wissenschaft des Judentums. In addition to these weeklies, Roest founded and edited the quarterly De Israëlietische Letterbode (1875–86), which served as a platform for international, historical as well as bibliographical, scholarship.


J.M. Hillesum, "Voornaamste letterkundige producten van wijlen M. Roest Mizrachi," in: Israëlietische Nieuws-bode, 32, 34 (1890); J. Zwarts, nnbw, vii (1927), 1060–61; J. Lipschits, Honderd jaar niw: het Nieuw Israëlitisch Weekblad 18651965 (1966); L. Fuks, in: Studia Rosenthaliana 1 (1967), 4–22. add. bibliography: R. Cohen, in: Studia Rosenthaliana, 9 (1975), 90–102; L. Fuks, in: Studia Rosenthaliana, 13 (1979), 157–93; J. Meijer, Meijer Marcus Roest (18211889). De biografie van een bibliograaf, 2 vols (1980); A.K. Offenberg in: Frederik Muller, leven en werken (1996), 110–18.

[Frederik Jacob Hirsch /

Irene E. Zwiep (2nd ed.)]

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