Hungarian scholar and publicist; born April 29, 1861, at Putnok, Hungary; educated at three different yeshibot, among them that of Presburg, and at the Landesrabbinerschule in Budapest (1880-88); studied philosophy and Orientalia at the Budapest University; received there the degree of Ph.D. cum laude in 1887, and the rabbinical diploma in 1888.
In 1887 Blau became teacher of the Talmud at the Landesrabbinerschule, in 1888 substitute, and in 1889 professor of the Bible, the Hebrew and Aramaic languages, and the Talmud. Since 1899 he has also been librarian and tutor in Jewish history. He is (1902) president of the folk-lore section of the Jewish-Hungarian Literary Society, and (since 1891) editor of the "Magyar Zsido Szemle." Blau'sscientific publications have dealt chiefly with the literature and life of the Jews in the Talmudic and early post-Talmudic periods (e.g., "Beiträge zur Erklärung der Mechilta und des Sifre," in the Steinschneider "Festschrift," 1896; "Quelques Notes sur Jésus ben Sirach," in "Revue Etudes Juives," xxxv. 19-47; "Das Altjüdische Zauberwesen," Strasburg, 1898), with the Jewish traditions regarding the Masorah ("Massoretische Untersuchungen," Strasburg, 1891; "Masoretic Studies," in "Jewish Quarterly Review," viii., ix.), and the canon of Scripture ("Zur Einleitung in die Heilige Schrift," Strasburg, 1894). This latter work is especially valuable for the light it throws upon the history of the Bible text in the early synagogue. Blau has also published "Der Concursus Vitiorum nach Talmudischem Recht," Budapest, 1887; and "Die Erwählung Israel's" (in Hungarian), ib. 1890; and has contributed to the "Monatsschrift," "Zeitschrift für Hebräische Bibliographie," "Jahrbuch des Ungarischen Litteraturvereines," "Jahrbuch der Deutschen Litteraturvereines," etc.