Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk

Early leader of Hasidic Judaism.

- Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk

21 related topics


Dov Ber of Mezeritch

Disciple of Rabbi Israel ben Eliezer (the Baal Shem Tov), the founder of Hasidic Judaism, and was chosen as his successor to lead the early movement.

Title page of Maggid Devarav L'Yaakov (Koretz, 1781 edition).
Mausoleum in Hanipol where he is buried alongside Zusha of Hanipol, Reb Leib HaKohen

His inner circle of disciples, known as the Chevraia Kadisha ("Holy Brotherhood"), included Rabbis Avraham HaMalach (his son), Nachum of Czernobyl, Elimelech of Lizhensk, Zusha of Hanipol, Levi Yitzchok of Berditchev, Boruch of Medzhybizh, Aharon (HaGadol) of Karlin, Chaim Chaykl of Amdur, Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk, Shmuel Shmelke of Nikolsburg, Shlomo Flam (the Lutzker Maggid) and Shneur Zalman of Liadi.

Shneur Zalman of Liadi

Influential rabbi and the founder and first Rebbe of Chabad, a branch of Hasidic Judaism, then based in Liadi in the Russian Empire.

Writing sample from the Brockhaus and Efron Jewish Encyclopedia (1906–1913)
The French retreat from Moscow
Kozienice Synagogue in Poland. Some Polish Hasidic leaders supported Napoleon
Petropavlovski fortress in St. Petersburg
New guesthouse next to his Ohel
His grave in Hadiach
The Tanya, a classic text of Hasidic philosophy
1875 edition of the Shulchan Aruch HaRav

Shneur Zalman and a fellow Hasidic leader, Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk (or, according to the tradition in the Soloveitchik family, Levi Yitzchok of Berditchev), attempted to persuade the leader of Lithuanian Jewry, the Vilna Gaon, of the legitimacy of Hasidic practices.


City in Belarus.

View of Vitebsk in the early 19th century by Józef Peszka.
Vitebsk in 1943, during the period of Nazi German occupation
Downtown of Vitebsk
St. Barbara Church in Vitebsk
Vitebsk Town Hall (1775)
Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Vitebsk
Slavianski Bazaar in Vitebsk, 2009

Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk (1730?–1788), Hasidic Rebbe

Vilna Gaon

Talmudist, halakhist, kabbalist, and the foremost leader of misnagdic (non-hasidic) Jewry of the past few centuries.

Vilna Gaon
Vilna Gaon (Zalkind, Ber)
Elijah Ben Solomon, the Vilna Gaon
The Vilna Gaon monument at the site of the Great Synagogue of Vilna
The Vilna Gaon synagogue in Sha'arei Hesed, Jerusalem

This immigration was one of the first modern Jewish migrations to Palestine, although Hasidic immigration was already active in the 1780s (even by the rebbes themselves, such as the elderly Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk and Chaim Chaykl of Amdur).

Hasidic Judaism

Jewish religious group that arose as a spiritual revival movement in the territory of contemporary Western Ukraine during the 18th century, and spread rapidly throughout Eastern Europe.

The Kaliver Rebbe, Holocaust survivor, inspiring his court on the festival of Sukkot
Kvitel requests for blessing piled on the graves of the last Lubavitcher Rebbes
Hasidic family in Borough Park, Brooklyn. The man is wearing a shtreimel, and either a bekishe or a rekel. The woman is wearing a wig, called a sheitel, as she is forbidden to show her hair in public.
Rabbi Moshe Leib Rabinovich, Munkacser Rebbe, wearing a kolpik
The Dorohoi Rebbe in his traditional rabbinical Sabbath garb
Sculpture of the Hasidic movement's celebration of spirituality on the Knesset Menorah
Israel ben Eliezer's autograph
Shivchei HaBesht (Praises of the Baal Shem Tov), the first compilation of Hasidic hagiographic storytelling, was printed from manuscripts in 1815
Palace of the Ruzhin dynasty, known for its "royal" mannerism, in Sadhora.
Belzer Rebbe Aharon Rokeach (depicted 1934), who was hidden from the Nazis and smuggled out of Europe.

Twenty or so of Dov Ber's prime disciples each brought it to a different region, and their own successors followed: Aharon of Karlin (I), Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk, and Shneur Zalman of Liadi were the emissaries to the former Lithuania in the far north, while Menachem Nachum Twersky headed to Chernobyl in the east, and Levi Yitzchok of Berditchev remained nearby.

Abraham Kalisker

Prominent Chassidic rabbi of the 3rd generation of Chassidic leaders.

Illustration of Aaron's lineage from the 1493 Nuremberg Chronicle

In 1777, at about age 36, he joined the first hassidic aliyah under the leadership of Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk and emigrated to the Holy Land.

Old synagogues of Tiberias

The Old synagogues of Tiberias are a group of synagogues situated in the old city of Tiberias, Israel, that date form the 18th and 19th centuries.

Abulafia Synagogue
Beth Gavriel

Karlin-Stolin Synagogue, established by Karlin-Stolin Hasidim who arrived in the Holy Land in the mid-19th century, settling in Tiberias, Hebron and Safed. In 1869 they redeemed the site of a former synagogue in Tiberias which had been built in 1786 by Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk and destroyed in the Galilee earthquake of 1837. Construction of a new synagogue started in 1870 and was assisted by funds from the diaspora. The synagogue has a notable Torah Ark in Eastern European style.

Karlin-Stolin (Hasidic dynasty)

Hasidic dynasty, originating with Rebbe Aaron ben Jacob of Karlin in present-day Belarus.


In 1869, they redeemed the site of a former synagogue in Tiberias which had been built in 1786 by Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk, but was destroyed in the Galilee earthquake of 1837.

History of Zionism

Organized movement is generally considered to have been founded by Theodor Herzl in 1897.

Auto-Emancipation by J. L. Pinsker, 1882
"Memorandum to Protestant Monarchs of Europe for the restoration of the Jews to Palestine", published in the Colonial Times, in 1841
Theodor Herzl addresses the Second Zionist Congress in 1898.
May our eyes behold your return in mercy to Zion. Design by Lilien to the Fifth Zionist Congress, Basel, 1901.
Tel Aviv was founded on empty dunes, purchased from Arabs, north of the existing city of Jaffa. This photograph is of the auction of the first lots in 1909.
Poster from the Zionist Tarbut schools of Poland in the 1930s. Zionist parties were very active in Polish politics. In the 1922 Polish elections, Zionists held 24 seats of a total of 35 Jewish parliament members.
Mohammad Amin al-Husayni
Poster by the United Palestine Appeal calling for Jewish mobilization during World War II
David Ben-Gurion (First Prime Minister of Israel) publicly pronouncing the Declaration of the State of Israel, May 14, 1948, Tel Aviv, Israel, beneath a large portrait of Theodor Herzl, founder of modern political Zionism.
Israeli demonstration in support of Soviet Jewry

These included Nahmanides, Yechiel of Paris with several hundred of his students, Joseph ben Ephraim Karo, Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk and 300 of his followers, and over 500 disciples (and their families) of the Vilna Gaon known as Perushim, among others.

History of the Jews and Judaism in the Land of Israel

About the history and religion of the Jews, who originated in the Land of Israel, and have maintained physical, cultural, and religious ties to it ever since.

The Merneptah Stele. While alternative translations exist, the majority of biblical archeologists translate a set of hieroglyphs as "Israel", representing the first instance of the name Israel in the historical record.
The Iron Age kingdom of Israel (blue) and kingdom of Judah (tan), with their neighbours (8th century BCE), based on Biblical accounts
An artist's depiction of the deportation and exile of the Jews of the ancient Kingdom of Judah to Babylon and the destruction of Jerusalem and Solomon's temple
One of the 21 LMLK seals found near the ancient city of Lachish, which has an inscription written in Paleo-Hebrew alphabet and is dated from the reign of Hezekiah
The Hasmonean kingdom at its greatest extent.
Model of Herod's Temple, (Israel Museum)
The sack of Jerusalem depicted on the Arch of Titus, Rome
Eshtemoa synagogue menorah, carved during the 3rd or 4th century.
The ancient synagogue at Nabratein was destroyed in the Galilee earthquake of 363
Umm el-Kanatir, "Mother of the Arches" synagogue, Golan Heights, dated to the 6th-8th century
The ruins of the synagogue at Kfar Bar'am, an ancient Jewish village abandoned by its Jewish inhabitants sometime between the 7th and 13th centuries.
Capture of Jerusalem, 1099
Synagogue of Nachmanides, Casale Pilgrim (16th-century)
Title page of Ishtori Haparchi's Kaftor Vaferech, Venice 1549. In the first Hebrew book printed on the geography of Palestine, 180 locations mentioned in the Bible and Talmudic literature are identified.
One of the earliest photographs of Jews praying at the Western Wall of Herod's Temple, 1870s. The Scroll of Ahimaaz (1050 CE) mentions the location as a Jewish prayer site. In around 1560, Suleiman the Magnificent gave official recognition of the right of Jews to pray there.
The Ari Synagogue in Safed. Founded in the 1570s, it was rebuilt in 1857 following an earthquake.
Jewish workers in the Kerem Avraham neighborhood of Jerusalem in the mid-19th century
The funeral of a rabbi in Jerusalem, 1903.
Installation of the Chacham Bashi at the Ben Zakai Synagogue, 1893. According to legend, the synagogue stands on the site of the study hall of 1st-century sage, Rabban Yochanan ben Zakai. The current building was constructed in 1610.
The UN partition plan
Western Wall in Jerusalem
Yemenite Jews in Ma'abarat (Absorption Camp) Rosh Ha-Ayin in 1950

In 1777, a group of about 300 Hasidic Jews from Lithuania led by Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Vitebsk immigrated to Palestine.