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FERNANDO, AARON:

Teacher and reformer at Leghorn, Italy; died 1830. He held a position under the first Napoleon, for whom he had the greatest admiration; and in the enthusiasm of that period, he imagined that the eve of universal brotherhood had arrived, and that the Jews must put themselves in line by simplifying their ceremonial. The commandments of the Law were to be reduced to sixty, and most of the ceremonial laws abolished. He set forth these theories in his "Progetto Filosofico di una Completa Riforma del Culto e dell' Educazine Politico-Morale del Popolo Ebreo. Tiberiade 1810," of which only the first of the two volumes was printed. The Jews denounced the book to the authorities as dangerous to religion. The publication was interdicted, and all the copies of the first volume were confiscated (July 14, 1814), bought up by the congregation, and burned. The only existing copy is that of the author, which is now in the Stadtbibliothek at Frankfort-on-the-Main.

Bibliography:
  • Reggio, Ha-Torah weha-Filosofia, p. 148;
  • Jost's Annalen, 1841, p. 72;
  • Zunz, G. V. 2d ed., p. 489;
  • Berliner, Aus Meiner Bibliothek, p. 16.
S. G.
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