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Veit, Moritz


VEIT, MORITZ (1808–1864), German publisher, politician, and Jewish leader. A member of the wealthy Veit family of Berlin, Moritz studied philosophy, history, and philology at the University of Berlin (1825–32) and earned his doctorate at Jena in 1833. At the same time he wrote poetry and edited a literary journal, Berliner Musenalmanach (1831–31). In the publishing house he set up in 1834, his authors included L. von Ranke, J.G. Fichte, A. von Chamisso, and F.K. von Savigny. He was chairman of the German publishers' organization (Boersenverein) from 1853 to 1861. Veit also played an active part in public life. In 1847 he opposed the proposed Jewry Law which attempted to organize Prussian Jewry according to the corporatist-medieval ideas of King *Frederick Williamiv. He was elected to the 1848 Frankfurt Parliament, and after the revolution he was again one of the few Jewish representatives in the first chamber of the Prussian Parliament (1851); later, as a member of the Prussian House of Representatives (1858–61), he again raised his voice against attempts to infringe on Jewish rights. He was a member of the Berlin municipal council for 20 years. An elder of the Berlin Jewish community (1839–48), he was later chairman of its council. He was instrumental in the appointment of his close friend, Michael *Sachs, to the Berlin rabbinate, developed communal schools and institutions, and drafted the 1860 statutes of the community.


L. Geiger (ed.), Michael Sachs und Moritz Veit, Briefwechsel (1897); idem, in: mgwj, 52 (1908), 513–39; idem, in: jjgl, 13 (1910), 129–58; idem, in: adb; E. Hamburger, in: ylbi, 9 (1964), 207, 208, 219, 224. add. bibliography: W. Wehrenpfennig, Moritz Veit (1870); L. Geiger, in: Die Deutsche Literatur und die Juden (1910), 182–211.

[Ed. / Archiv Bibliographia Juadaica (2nd ed.)]

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