Lothar Rothschild

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Lothar Rothschild (born December 7, 1909 in Karlsruhe , † March 27, 1974 in St. Gallen ) was a German- born Swiss rabbi and publicist .

He was one of the important liberal rabbis of German-speaking Jewry after the Second World War .


Rothschild grew up in Basel. He studied history at the University of Basel and received his rabbinical title at the Breslau seminary . His dissertation by Johann Caspar Ulrich von Zürich and his “Collection of Jewish Stories in Switzerland” from 1933 was included in the series of Swiss Studies in History . He took up his first post as a rabbi in Saarbrücken. He then returned to Basel and worked from 1938 to 1943 in the refugee welfare of the Association of Swiss Poor Care. He worked as a rabbi in the border town of Kreuzlingen and from 1943 in St. Gallen . With empathy he turned to the needs of the Jewish refugees admitted here. Rothschild stood up for police captain Paul Grüninger , who was only rehabilitated very late , when he and his family were in dire straits after the Second World War and left alone by most Jews and the Christian community. In 1968 Rabbi Lothar Rothschild resigned from his post in St. Gallen for health reasons.

He was in great demand as a lecturer and known beyond the Swiss borders from radio and television. He received an honorary doctorate from the Hebrew Union College in the United States ; the commemorative publication "Research on Judaism" was published in Bern in 1970.

Rothschild wrote essays and reviews for the journal Tradition und Renewal, which he co-founded and edited, as well as for the daily press, especially in the Israelitisches Wochenblatt, which is followed by tachles . Every week he wrote the column «The Word of Scripture». He taught at university educational institutions in St. Gallen and Zurich.

Rothschild was married and had two sons, Claude and Pierre Rothschild .

Publications (selection)

As an author
  • Johann Caspar Ulrich von Zurich and his “Collection of Jewish Stories in Switzerland” . Leemann Verlag, Zurich 1933.
  • Sermon on the eve of Roshashana - Roshhashana 5696 . Ludwigshafen 1935.
  • In the flow of time. Anniversary publication for the centenary of the Israelite community of St. Gallen, 1863-1963 . Volksstimme publishing house, St. Gallen 1963.
  • Mind and Action. Reports from a Jewish perspective . Frauenfeld Verlag, Stuttgart 1969.
As editor
  • Tradition and renewal. Journal for progressive Judaism for the German-speaking area .
  • Migdal Collection. Jewish knowledge for everyone . (Series of publications)


Web links