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MARX, DAVID:

Chief rabbi of Bordeaux, France; born at Landau, Bavaria, in 1807; died Feb., 1864. On his graduation from the Ecole Centrale Rabbinique at Metz he assumed charge of the Ecole Religieuse Israélite at Nancy; and in June, 1837, before he had attained the age required for the office, he was elected by the consistory of Bordeaux to succeed Chief Rabbi Abraham Andrade. In 1841 he proposed the introduction of confirmation at Bordeaux, a rite then regarded as a dangerous innovation. Marx organized numerous institutions in the community of Bordeaux, including a "salle d'asile" and an infirmary; and under his guidance the children of the community founded the Société de la Jeunesse Israélite de Bordeaux, for the relief of less fortunate children. At various times during his term of office he interfered in behalf of minors who had been kidnaped from their parents by Catholic proselytizers. In 1852 he was decorated by Napoleon III., then prince-president, with the cross of the Legion of Honor. On the day of his funeral Dounet, Cardinal Archbishop of Bordeaux, ordered the bells of all the churches in the city to be tolled. Marx, who was a remarkable preacher, published the following sermons: "Sermon sur le Culte Public" (Bordeaux, 1853); "Discours lors de l'Inauguration de la Synagogue de Clermont-Ferrand" (1862); "Sermon sur le Dogme et la Morale" (ib. 1863).

Bibliography:
  • Aristide Astruc, Oraison Funèbre de D. Marx, Paris, 1864.
S. J. Ka.
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