Daiches crop 2 (1)

Rabbi Dr Salis Daiches (Vilnius, Lithuania 1880 – Edinburgh 1945) settled in England in 1907 having studied at Berlin University. He attended the Hildesheimer Seminary and subsequently graduated with a PhD from Leipzig University.

After periods in Hull, Hammersmith and Sunderland, Daiches received a call to become rabbi to the Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation in 1918. For the remainder of his life he worked to improve relations between Jews and Christians in Scotland. He attained a high profile in Scottish society through his oratory and many letters and articles he wrote for the Scottish press.

Daiches was a prominent Freemason, and was heavily involved in the activities of the Edinburgh Zionist Association. During the 1920s he challenged Christian missions targeting Jews in Edinburgh and defended shechita (ritual slaughter of animals according to Jewish dietary laws). After 1933 and until his death, Daiches was instrumental in assisting Jewish refugees in Scotland and Jewish soldiers stationed around the city, and engaged in fighting domestic Fascism.

(Image courtesy of the Scottish Jewish Archives Centre.)


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