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Daiches Family

DAICHES, rabbinical family, originating in Lithuania, settled in Britain. LOEB HIRSH ARYEH ẒEVI B. DAVID (d. 1891), dayyan and rosh yeshivah in Kovno, wrote a commentary on the New Year prayers, Zivḥei Teru'ah (1867). His son, ISRAEL ḤAYYIM (1850–1937), born in Darshunishek, Lithuania, studied at Lithuanian yeshivot and, after a short time as rabbi in a Lithuanian community, became rabbi in Leeds, England. Daiches founded the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of England. Often lenient in his opinions, Daiches tried to adapt to modern technological advances, and occasionally was subjected to strong criticism (see his Mikveh Yisrael, 1912). His published work mainly concerned the Jerusalem Talmud, on which he wrote annotations; the responsa of Isaac b. Sheshet (Ribash; 1879); Ma'arḥot Yisrael, on Oraḥ le-Ḥayyim by Ḥayyim Segal of Ratzki (1879); and notes added to Last's edition of Magen Avot by Menahem ha-Meiri (1909, 1958). Daiches also published responsa (1870) and sermons (Imrei Yosher, 1887), and Derashot Maharyaḥ (with autobiography, 1930). He edited a rabbinic journal, Beit Va'ad la-Ḥakhamim, during 1902–04.

His son SAMUEL (1878–1949) was a rabbinic and Oriental scholar. Born in Vilna, Samuel studied with his father and at the Berlin Rabbinical Seminary. After serving as rabbi at Sunderland, England, Daiches became lecturer in Bible, Talmud, and Midrash at Jews' College, London, in 1908. He also took an active part in the work of B'nai B'rith, the Anglo-Jewish Association, the British Board of Deputies, the Jewish Agency, and Jewish relief organizations. In his earlier days Daiches published works on Babylonian antiquity and its influence on Judaism, including Altbabylonische Rechtsurkunden (1903), Talmudische und Midraschische Parallelen zum babylonischen Schoeffungsepos (1903), Babylonia and Hebrew Literature (1904), Balaam – A Babylonian Baru (1909), Jews in Babylonia in the Times of Ezra and Nehemiah According to Babylonian Inscriptions (1910), and Babylonian Oil Magic (1913). His other studies include Studies in Psalms (1930), Study of the Talmud in Spain (1921), and Divorce in Jewish Law (1926). Daiches contributed to learned German and English journals and to the Hebrew Ha-Shilo'aḥ. A semi-jubilee volume, Ye Are My Witnesses, was published in his honor in 1936. His Essays and Addresses, a memorial volume, appeared in 1955.

SALIS (1880–1945), another son of Israel Ḥayyim, was also a rabbi and author. Like his brother, he was born in Vilna and received his rabbinic education from his father and at the Berlin Rabbinical Seminary. After serving as rabbi at Hull and Sunderland, England, he went to Edinburgh (1918), where he became the spiritual leader and spokesman of Scottish Jewry. He too was active in B'nai B'rith and the Zionist movement. He published a volume of selected essays, Aspects of Judaism (1928), and was one of the translators of the Soncino Talmud. David *Daiches (1912–2005), writer and critic, was his son.


Israelsham-Weindow (eds.), Ye Are My Witnesses (1936), foreword by J.H. Hertz; Essays and Addresses (1955), with a memoir by G. Webber; Epstein, in: S. Federbush (ed.), Ḥokhmat Yisrael be-Ma'arav Eiropah, 1 (1958), 500–1; D. Daiches, Two Worlds: An Edinburgh Jewish Childhood (1956).

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.