Stimmen Aus Rom - "Voices from Rome" - an antisemitic publication on the background of the Edgardo Mortara affair - the Jewish boy kidnapped from his family and baptized to Christianity in an affair that shook all of Europe - documentation of the author's meeting with the boy Edgardo himself, by den Benediktinern in St. Paul, published by Verlag Der Fr. Hurter`schen Buchhandlung, Schaffhausen (Switzerland), 1860 - first edition, German.
This anti-Semitic publication deals with the emancipation (equal rights) received by Jews in European countries during the 19th century, claiming that Jews actually exploit the granting of civil rights to mock Christianity by presenting it as outdated and irrelevant to the modern age, as part of the waves of disbelief in faiths that swept Europe in the 19th century. "Free status brought the Jewish people unprecedented material, commercial and scientific advantages... Now they threaten to become dangerous to Christians", it writes. Against this background, the author claims that Jews dared to activate all connections and efforts within their ability to return the boy Edgardo Mortara to the Jewish faith after being baptized to Christianity at age 6, believing that equal rights in Europe and Christianity's decline would stand by their side. The book was published a year after the affair became known across Europe, and the author was personally involved. After publications on "the kidnapped Christian boy who was actually Jewish", the author decided to travel to Rome on November 21, 1858 to meet Edgardo himself. After searching, he succeeded in reaching the boy in church and met with him several times. In the book he describes meetings with the boy and writes extensively about those meetings. His main claim is that despite Edgardo's external appearance characteristic of a Jew, he demonstrated remarkable maturity for his age which stems, in the author's opinion, from being baptized into Christianity from childhood. He asked Edgardo if he preferred the Christian faith, and the boy replied yes. "Seeing Edgardo in devotion to the holy cross was moving", he writes. The author adds that from what he saw, Edgardo found Christian life rich and meaningful to him, and did not intend to return to the Jewish faith of his fathers. He provides previously unknown details regarding Edgardo's parents' and Jewish community's attempts to return him to Judaism in various ways, and how they did not succeed, arguing that Christianity only benefited the kidnapped Jewish child.
Edgardo Mortara (1851-1940), son of a Jewish merchant from Bologna (then in the Papal States of Italy). At age two he fell seriously ill and was secretly baptized by a Christian servant of the family out of belief that it would save the child. A few years later the servant testified about the baptism to the authorities. Since the law at the time prohibited anyone who was not Catholic from raising and educating Catholic children, Mortara was taken from his family. All attempts by his family to return their son failed. Mortara was raised as a Catholic and in adulthood joined the Augustinian order. Later he also worked as a missionary in Germany and New York. The Mortara affair sparked an uproar among Jewish communities and liberal circles in Europe and the United States. Several European governments and the US government expressed objections and sought to return Mortara to his family. This case is considered a landmark event in European history and one of the factors behind the establishment of the organization "Alliance".
560 p. 21 cm. Stains on some pages. Original half leather and marble binding with gilt lettering on the spine. Good condition.