Zlatopolsky, Hillel

views updated


ZLATOPOLSKY, HILLEL (1868–1932), Zionist leader, industrialist, and philanthropist. Zlatopolsky was born in Yekaterinoslav. As secretary to Max *Mandelstamm, the Zionist Organization representative for the Kiev district (1897–1905), Zlatopolsky was in charge of the Zionist activities there, as well as of the financial center of Russian Zionists. He played a leading role in organizing the opposition to the *Uganda Scheme. He was one of the founders of the Ḥovevei Sefat Ever Society (Friends of the Hebrew Language, 1907) and was also active in the Histradrut le-Safah u-le-Tarbut Ivrit (Association of Hebrew Language and Culture). He made substantial financial contributions to facilitate the establishment of a network of Hebrew schools, ranging from kindergarten to teachers' seminaries. He also subsidized the Hebrew daily Ha-Am, and the *Habimah theater in Moscow and was one of the founders of Omanut, a publishing house for Hebrew textbooks and readers (the latter in cooperation with his daughter Shoshannah and son-in-law Joseph *Persitz). During World War i, he lived in Moscow, but he left Russia in 1919. Together with Isaac *Naiditsch, he was one of the founders of the *Keren Hayesod, and as a member of its first board of directors he conceived the idea of a national tithe. Zlatopolsky wrote articles on Zionism and Hebrew culture, as well as feuilletons, the latter containing a wealth of general Jewish and ḥasidic folklore. Some of his writings were published in two collections, Bi-Tekufat ha-Teḥiyyah (1917) and Sefer ha-Feuilletonim (1944). He died in Paris, the victim of a murder.


M. Glickson, Ishim, 1 (1940), 231–7; D. Smilansky, Im Benei Dori (1942), 175–8.

[Yehuda Slutsky]