Zlocisti, Theodor

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ZLOCISTI, THEODOR (1874–1943), physician and one of the first German Zionists. Born in Borchestowa, East Prussia, Zlocisti studied medicine at the University of Berlin and graduated in 1900. He practiced his profession throughout his life, first in Berlin and from 1921 in Ereẓ Israel – initially in Tel Aviv and later in Haifa. During World War i he was the chief medical officer of the Red Cross Mission in Constantinople and director of the Red Cross hospital in that city. In Tel Aviv he served as a member of the city council and its executive committee. Zlocisti played a leading role in the Zionist movement in Germany. In 1893 he was the secretary of the Young Israel Society in Berlin and had an exchange of correspondence with *Herzl. In 1895 he became one of the founders of the first Zionist students' society in Germany; together with his wife he attended the First Zionist Congress and kept up his Zionist activities in Germany until settling in Ereẓ Israel. He took a profound interest in East European Jewry and in Yiddish literature, and in Aus einer stillen Welt, Erzaehlungen aus der modernen juedischen Literatur (1910), he published German translations of works by leading Yiddish authors. He also published two collections of verse, Vom Heimweg (1903) and Am Tor des Abends (1912). He was the author of professional articles and treatises and of a comprehensive work on the climate of Ereẓ Israel, Klimatologie und Pathologie Palaestinas (1937).

Zlocisti also revived the writings of Moses *Hess and devoted efforts throughout his life to uncovering documentary material on Hess. He began with the publication of Hess's Jewish writings (Juedische Schriften, 1905), to which he added a comprehensive introduction. This introduction was later expanded into a special book (Heb. trans. Y.A. Heller, 2 vols., 1945–46). He also published a selection of his socialist writings, Moses Hess, der Vorkaempfer des Sozialismus und Zionismus (1921), a complete edition of Rome and Jerusalem (1935), and a shortened edition (1939), including an introduction and comments. He left a collection of Moses Hess's correspondence that was published in Hebrew translation after his death with an introduction by the translator, G. Kressel (1947).


A. Biram in: Haaretz (Dec. 10, 1953); G. Kressel and N. Rotenstreich, in: Davar (Jan. 25, 1944).

[Getzel Kressel]