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Chapter 10

This verdict was issued by command of the Emperor and sealed by his hand.

Injunctions were laid upon officials to keep it secret from the distinguished Jews who had places in the government, so that they should not endeavour to have the appalling sentence revoked. But it was sent to Brno, where it was delivered into the hands of that friend of the Jews, Count Koniz; and through him all the Jews of Brno became aware of it. When they heard it, they trebled, their hearts failed within them. They implored the Count to delay its execution at least for some time. “Who can tell?” they said, “perhaps the anger of the Emperor might be turned from us, and the verdict altered.”

The Count very magnanimously fulfilled their request. The matter was promptly communicated to the distinguished Jew S.Wertheimer, who at once presented a petition to the Emperor, and besought him to accept an offer for the redemption of the synagogue of Úsov; namely, a payment to the Treasury of 6000 gulden, which, according to the register of the synagogue, of the year 5460, was the cost of its construction.

The Jews of Brno, who knew the great influence of S.Wertheimer, were almost sure that he would succeed. But to the astonishment of all, the offer was not accepted in spite of all his endeavours and those of the eminent princes, his friends. Their efforts failed, the Emperor would on no account alter the verdict, but ordered it to be put into immediate execution.

Indeed it must have been the will of the Lord our God that this evil should befall us.


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