By: Isaac Bloch
Honorary counselor to the French Court of Cassation (court of appeal) and officer of the Legion of Honor; born in Metz, 1800; died Dec. 3, 1875. His father, Mayer Anspach, died in 1844, aged ninety-three years. Philippe studied law, and at the time of the July revolution, 1830, was a practising advocate in Paris. He took an active part in the events leading to the revolution of July, and was thereupon appointed deputy procurator of the department of Seine-et-Marne at Meaux by the government of Louis Philippe. After filling this office for a time, he was called to Paris, and successively became judge deputy to the Court of Justice, deputy attorney-general, counselor at the Court of Appeals, section-president thereof, and finally counselor to the Court of Cassation. A few years before his death ill health compelled him to resign the last office, after a legal career in which he displayed profound knowledge of law, together with remarkable eloquence and incorruptible firmness. Anspach was the first Jew to occupy a place in the supreme magistracy of France. He was a thorough Israelite and evinced an active interest in all matters pertaining to his coreligionists. Having held a seat in the Consistory of Paris for a long time, he was elected, in 1845, to the Central Consistory, where he distinguished himself by his intelligence and administrative ability. It was characteristic of the man that at court levees he would attend as one of the representatives of the Jewish consistory, rather than with his fellow dignitaries of the Court of Justice.
Anspach had two daughters, the elder of whom married Baron Gustave de Rothschild. He is the author of a pamphlet, "De la Procédure Devant les Cours d'Assises."