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Nobel, Nechemja Anton

Nechemja Anton Nobel was the orthodox rabbi of the Jewish community in Frankfurt, succeeding Markus Horovitz. Nobel was born in Hungary in 1871, and grew up in Halberstadt. He studied philosophy and philology in Berlin, where he attended the orthodox Jewish seminary. In 1895 he passed his rabbi's examination and went to Cologne, gaining his doctorate two years later. He then returned to study philosophy under the famous neoKantian professor of philosophy Hermann Cohen at Marburg.
Nobel was a rabbi in Königsberg (East Prussia), Leipzig, and Hamburg before being called to the Börneplatz synagogue in Frankfurt in 1910.
He was highly esteemed as a preacher and was also recognised as a Talmudic scholar. In Frankfurt he implemented significant innovations in religious law, such as the establishment of an Eruw
(a symbolic institution which permits carrying burdens on the Sabbath); and the acceptance of women's suffrage within the Israelite community. After the First World War, he gathered a circle of young Jewish intellectuals (including Erich Fromm), with the object of bringing them closer to orthodox Judaism. He was one of the few German rabbis to adopt the Zionist creed, and was a cofounder of the Misrachi Zionist religious organisation.
He died aged only 51 in January 1922 and is buried in the cemetery in the RatBeil Straße. Only a handful of his sermons and a few of his rulings on religious law were published.

© Jüd. Museum Frankfurt 1992-2002 /  Sources