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Koppel Reich

REICH, KOPPEL (Jacob; 1838–1929), Hungarian rabbi. Born in Verbó into a rabbinical family, he studied under his father Abraham Ezekiel Reich, rabbi of Bannewitz, and Abraham Samuel Benjamin *Sofer, rabbi of Pressburg. He married the daughter of Israel ha-Ro'eh, disciple of Moses *Sofer and rabbi of Szobotiszt, whom he succeeded in 1860. Twenty years later he became rabbi of Verbó where his grandfather had previously held office and was elected chief rabbi of the Orthodox community of Budapest in 1889. Reich possessed a wide general education and was active in Hungarian Orthodox communal affairs. In 1905 he presided over the convention of Orthodox rabbis and community leaders who drew up the regulations of Orthodox Jewry in Hungary. He delivered the opening speech in Hebrew – an unusual event in Hungary. These regulations were later ratified by the government and became the legal framework for the organization of Orthodoxy in Hungary. In the school which he established and directed, Torat Emet, both religious and secular subjects were taught. In 1927, although he was almost 90 years old, he took his seat in the upper house of the Hungarian parliament. Reich left no works, but he is quoted by rabbis of his generation. All his sons and sons-in-law held rabbinical office in Hungary.


P.Z. Schwartz, Shem ha-Gedolim me-Ereẓ Hagar (19592), pt. 2, 35.

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