STEIN-AM-ANGER (Hungarian, Szombathely):
Town in Hungary. Although now one of the largest and most important in the country, the Jewish community of Stein-am-Anger is of comparatively recent origin. In 1567 Emperor Maximilian II. granted to the town the privilege of allowing none but Catholics to dwell within its walls; and even in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, when the municipal authorities rented shops to Jews, the latter were permitted to remain in the town only during the day, and then only without their families. Down to the beginning of the nineteenth century but three or four Jewish families succeeded in taking up a permanent residence there. The members of the little community of Stein-am-Anger, therefore, dwelt not in the town itself, but in the outlying districts (now united into one municipality). They separated in 1830 from the community of Rechnitz, of which they had previously formed a part, and were henceforth known as the community of Szombathely. When the Jews of Hungary were emancipated by the law of 1840, the city was obliged to open its doors to them; but at the beginning of the revolution of 1848 they were not only attacked and plundered, but threatened with expulsion. The authorities interfered, however, and when peace was restored, the community quickly developed.
The first elementary school was founded in 1846, and is now (1905) organized as a normal school, with four grades and about 230 pupils. The first synagogue was built by the former lord of the town, Duke Batthyányi, who sold it to the Jews. In 1880 a large temple was built; it is one of the handsomest edifices of its kind in Hungary. The founder of the community and its first rabbi was Ludwig Königsberger (d. 1861); he was succeeded in turn by Leopold Rockenstein, Joseph Stier, and Béla Bernstein (called in 1892). A small Orthodox congregation, numbering about 60 or 70 members, separated from the main body in 1870. It has its own synagogue, an elementary school with two teachers, and an independent organization.