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Efim Levertov
THE RUDERMAN SISTERS

Dora Vasilevskaya
LIFE JOURNEY OF VASYA IVANOV

Olga Zagadskaya
JEWISH BORISOV

Alexander Rosenblum
LADY SEINA’S BUSINESS

Alexander Rosenblum
WHERE’S YOUR FRIEND ENGELSON?

Alexander Rosenblum
JOSEF EISENSTADT AND HIS SONS

Alexander Rosenblum
KYUKHELBEKER

Alexander Rosenblum
LAST RABBIS IN BORISOV

Alexander Rosenblum

LAST RABBIS IN BORISOV

It is known that in the time of the imperial Russia there were two categories of rabbis, public and religious. A public rabbi was elected by the Jewish community for the period of three years and approved by the provincial government. Having little relation to religion, the public rabbi didn’t have authority with the believers. His functions included intermediacy between the Jewish population and the state, acceptance of military oaths from Jewish soldiers and keeping records of the Jewish citizenship.

The management of the religious community and settlement of worldly conflicts of the Jews were assigned to a religious rabbi, a graduate of a special religious school, yeshiva.

The last executed rabbi in Borisov was Shevel Shlozberg (1884 – 1954), a mathematician. In the Soviet times he was allowed to teach, while in 1945 he was even appointed principal of high school № 8. But three years later someone reminded the party leaders about his past and Shevel Leibovich (Saul Lvovich) was removed from the principal’s position. Religious rabbis kept serving for some time during the Bolshevik regime. In 1927, the adherents of Judaism invited Rabbi Yankel-Judah Ryzhik (1892 – 1937) who was born in Senno shtetl and educated in the yeshivas of Nevel and Lyubavichi, to fill the vacancy of the principal. His life in Borisov, like in other cities of the Soviet country, was not a bed of roses (confirmed in his letter to a friend, written in 1933 and published in 1989). Almost all the synagogues were closed (they were 13), rabid anti-religious campaigns of violent atheists and public ridiculing of rabbis created unbearable atmosphere. But that was not enough. Terror started and Rabbi Yankel-Judah Ryzhik was one of the first to be arrested. He was accused of organizing a clerical group against the Soviets and collecting signatures against the closure of the synagogue. There was no trial. NKVD troika sentenced the 45-year-old rabbi to death. Religious life in Borisov lost a spiritual advisor and declined completely. It remained only in a small and tottering synagogue, built in 1841. In the first years of the fascist occupation it was plundered and taken to pieces.

Yankel-Judah Ryzhik was rehabilitated by decision of the Minsk region public prosecution from 30 November, 2000. As it is said, it’s better late than never…

Еврейское местечко под Минском


Jewish settlements in Minsk region

MinskBerezinoBobrBorisov DolginovoDukoraDzerzhinsk Ivenets Myadel NesvizhObchuga Pogost Rakov Seliba Slutsk Svir Uhvaly Vileika

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