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TELENESHTY (Rom. Teleneşti ), town in Central Moldova in the region of Bessarabia. Teleneshty was founded at the end of the 18th century by Jews invited by the estate's owner. In 1794, a ḥevra kaddisha was founded, the register of which was preserved until World War ii. In 1796 the owner of the estate concluded an agreement with the Jews laying down their privileges and obligations and fixing the amount of taxes to be paid for wine and spirits brought into the place and sold there. The community grew during the 19th century as a result of the large Jewish immigration to Bessarabia. In 1897 there were 3,876 Jews (89% of the total population), many of them engaging in viniculture, wine processing, and tobacco production. The 636 members registered in 1925 in the local fund included 205 tradesmen, 188 artisans, and 156 farmers. In 1930 there were 2,811 Jews in Teleneshty (73.9% of the total population). The communal institutions included a hospital founded in 1870. The community was destroyed when the Germans and Romanians invaded Bessarabia in July 1941. In the late 1960s the Jewish population was estimated at about 800. There was no synagogue. The writer S. *Ben-Zion was born and began his literary activities in Teleneshty which is described in his story "Nefesh Reẓuẓah" ("A Crushed Soul", 1952).

[Eliyahu Feldman]