Rabbi Zvi Hirsch Kalischer

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Zvi Hirsch Kalischer

Hebrew: Zvi Hirsch Kalischer, רבי צבי הירש קלישר
Also Known As: "הרב צבי הירש קלישר", "Zwi Hirsch Kalischer"
Birthplace: Lissa, Posen
Death: Died in Thorn, Germany
Place of Burial: Thorn, Germany
Immediate Family:

Son of Salomon (Shlomo) (Schlaume) Kalischer and Rahel Gutel Kalischer
Husband of Henrietta (Gütel) Kalischer
Father of Johanna (Hannah) Falk; Jenny Kalischer; Alfred (Christlieb) Kalischer; Auguste Kalischer; Wolf Hirsch Ze'ev Kalischer and 9 others
Brother of Löbl Kalischer; Moses Kalischer, III and Hanna Kalischer

Occupation: Rabbi ("Vater des Zionismus"), rabbi
Managed by: Raziel Yohai Seckbach
Last Updated:

About Rabbi Zvi Hirsch Kalischer

Kalischer, Zevi Hirsch (1795-1874) was a Polish rabbi and Zionist thinker.


In addition to his books on halakhah and Jewish philosophy, Kalischer's great contribution to Jewish thought was his belief that the settlement of Erez Israel was a necessary first step before the coming of the Messiah.

A student of Rabbi Akiva Eger and a strong opponent of Reform Judaism, Kalischer also acquired a knowledge of philosophy and other secular subjects.

Rabbi Kalischer, as had Rabbi Alkalai before him, saw an intrinsic connection between the national aspirations of the Jewish people and the traditional messianic belief. He was greatly influenced by the emancipation of the Jews in France and the Germanic countries during Napoleanic rule. These various emancipation decrees were seen by Rabbi Kalischer as part and parcel of the traditional and historical development of the Jewish people. However, he also saw this in a more esoteric structure – that of belonging to the period immediately before the messianic era. Therefore, he viewed the developments of rising nationalism among the Jewish people as one of the first stages in the process of natural redemption, i.e., that process by which man himself would help bring about the beginning of redemption in which at least some Jews would return to Eretz Israel.

His first expression of Zionism is to be found in a letter that he wrote in 1836 to the head of the Berlinbranch of the Rothschild family. There he explained that the beginning of the Redemption would come through natural causes – by human effort and by the will of the governments to gather the scattered of Israel into the Holy Land. These notions, however, did not engage him seriously until 1860, when an otherwise unknown doctor, Hayim Lurie, organized a society in Frankfurton the Oderto foster Jewish settlement in the Holy Land. Kalischer joined this group, and though the organization was short-lived and had no practical achievements to its credit, it provided him with the impulse to write his important Zionist work, Derishat Zion (“Seeking Zion”), which appeared in 1862.

Kalischer’s professional career was not remarkable. After completing his education in the conventional modes of the ghetto, he settled in Thorn, where he served as the Rabbi of the community for forty years. Financially independent in his own right, he was able to engage, after 1860, in innumerable journeys, meetings and myriad literary and practical activities on behalf of the ideal to which he was henceforth devoted.

Some tangible results flowed from his efforts, for he was instrumental in getting a group to buy land for colonization on the outskirts of Jaffa in 1866. His prodding finally moved the Alliance Israelite Universelle, the organization that had been created in France in 1860 for the international defense of Jewish rights, to found an agricultural school in Jaffa, Palestine, in 1870.



1913--1996- The Eger Family Association- pg.38

1913--1990- The Eger Family Association-אילן יד

About Rabbi Zvi Hirsch Kalischer (עברית)

הרב צבי הירש קלישר, 1795 - 1874 היה מגדולי הרבנים באירופה במאה ה-19, ומנהיג רב פעלים בתנועת התחייה הלאומית של ישראל. יותר מחמישים שנה שימש כרבה של קהילת טורן שלא על מנת לקבל פרס. לחם בתנועת הרפורמה ביהדות. טען שגאולת ישראל לא תבוא באופן ניסי בלבד אלא שלב ראשון שלה צריך להיות עלייה לארץ, התיישבות בה וקיום המצוות התלויות בארץ. ב-1860 הצטרף לאגודה שפעלה להתיישבות בארץ וב-1862 הוציא לאור את ספרו "דרישת ציון". קרא להשתחרר מן החלוקה ולהקים בית ספר חקלאי בארץ ישראל. כאשר הוקם בית הספר החקלאי מקוה ישראל ב-1870, הזמין מייסדו קרל נטר את הרב קלישר להצטרף לצוות המוסד, אך הדבר לא יצא אל הפועל.

כמה מרעיונותיו שימשו יסוד לתנועת "חיבת ציון", שקמה ברוסיה בשנת 1881. על שמו הקיבוץ הדתי "טירת צבי" שבבקעת בית שאן.

מספריו: " דרישת ציון",  "אמונה ישרה"(מחקרים ופירושים); "מאזניים למשפט"(דינים בחושן משפט); פירוש להגדה של פסח.

מגילות יחש של משפחת יפה- צבי יפה 1996/ גניגר ישראל- עמוד 7 ג

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Rabbi Zvi Hirsch Kalischer's Timeline

April 1, 1795
Lissa, Posen
October 1820
Age 25
Thorn, Prussia
Age 24
Age 27
Age 30
September 20, 1828
Age 33
Age 36
July 19, 1833
Age 38
Thorn, Germany
April 30, 1836
Age 41
July 1, 1839
Age 44
Thorn, Posen, Germany