ALEXANDER


ALEXANDER
ALEXANDER, English family of printers. ALEXANDER ALEXANDER (d. 1807?), pioneer of the Hebrew press in London with Benedict Meyers (Hebrew: Jost) of Halberstadt. In 1770 Alexander and Meyers produced an edition of the Ashkenazi prayer book with English translation; the list of subscribers included many non-Jews. This was followed by a Haggadah in two editions, Sephardi and Ashkenazi. Originally Alexander did not do the actual printing himself. He produced many liturgical works, including the complete liturgy according to the Sephardi and Ashkenazi rites with slovenly executed English translations (1773), as well as a Pentateuch with translation (1785). In 1772 he began to issue a series of annual pocket calendars. His son LEVY (JUDAH LEIB; 1754–1853) also printed Hebrew and English works for many years, reproducing several of his father's editions. Failing to secure for one of these the patronage of Chief Rabbi Solomon hirschel , he published a number of scurrilous attacks on him ("The Axe laid to the root, or, Ignorance and Superstition evident in the character of the Rev. S. Hirschel," 1808; "A Critique of the Hebrew Thanksgiving prayers … on Thursday the 7th of July … With an anecdote of the humorous sermon delivered by the High Priest the Rev. Solomon Hirschel… for the occasion," 1814). He continued the attack on the wrappings of his edition of the festival prayers issued in parts from 1808–15. His own writings include a reply to the proposals of J. van oven on the problem of the Jewish poor (1802), and an English grammar in rhyme (1833). His Memoirs of the Life and Commercial Connections of the Late Benjamin Goldsmid of Roehampton (1808) contains piquant details of contemporary Jewish life in London. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: C. Roth, History of the Great Synagogue (1950), 147, 186–7; Roth, Mag Bibl, index. ADD. BIBLIOGRAPHY: D.S. Katz, The Jews in the History of England, 1485–1850 (1994), 280, 302; T.M. Endelman, The Jews of Georgian England, 1714–1830 (1999), 190–91, 234–35. (Cecil Roth)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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