This Day In History 1 Sivan/May 26

British troops evacuating Dunkirk’s beaches.

According to Rabi Yehudah (Bava Metzia 106:2), today is the start of the summer season.

In 2449/1312 B.C.E., six weeks after their exodus from Egypt, Bnei Yisrael arrived at Har Sinai and camped at the foot of the mountain ‘ke’ish echad beleiv echad — as one man, with one heart,’ in preparation for receiving the Torah from Hashem. On this day, however, Moshe did not give them any mitzvos, because of their exhaustion from the journey.

In 4856/1096, Crusaders massacred the remainder of the Jews of Worms while they recited Hallel, as related in the Kinah, “Mi Yitein Roshi Mayim.”

In 3440/321 B.C.E., Yechezkel Hanavi recounted the nevuah delivered to him regarding the arrogance of Mitzrayim (see Yechezkel 31).


5688/1928, Harav Avraham Menachem Halevi Steinberg, zt”l, Rav of Brod

5688/1928, Harav Eliezer Dovid Greenwald of Satmar, zt”l, the Keren LeDovid

5707/1947, Harav Mordechai Shapiro of Kaminka-Koritz, zt”l

5760/2000, Harav Aharon Yechiel Leifer, zy”a, the Nadvorna-Banya Rebbe of Tzefas

5506/1746, Harav Meir Horowitz, zt”l, the Maharam Titkin

Harav Meir Halevi Horowitz was the son of Rav Shmuel Shmelke, Rav of Turna and son of Rav Yehoshua (who was the son of Harav Pinchas, brother-in-law of the Rema).

Rav Meir learned nigleh for seven years and nistar for the next seven years, not wishing to mix the two.

Reb Meir was appointed Rav of Tiktin; he became known as Maharam Tiktin after that city.

Reb Meir was a kadosh; many mofsim are credited to him. One year on Motzoei Yom Kippur, he and his beis din went out after Maariv and waited many long hours to make Kiddush Levanah because the sky was covered with clouds. Reb Meir raised his hands heavenwards and exclaimed: “Meir and his beis din are waiting to fulfill Kiddush Levanah. Let the clouds disperse and the moon appear, allowing us to fulfill our mitzvah.” As he finished speaking a strong wind blew away the clouds, and the moon became visible.

Reb Meir was renowned for his humility. In a drashah that a passing maggid delivered in Tiktin, he elaborated on many aveiros that most simple Jews aren’t careful about. Following the drashah, Reb Meir approached the maggid and asked why he had embarrassed him publicly by enumerating his aveiros in front of the entire kehillah. The maggid explained that he was addressing the kehillah, not the Rav, to which Reb Meir responded, “The kehillah have no aveiros, so you must have meant me.”

The Baal Shem Tov once commented that Reb Meir was worthy that the Shechinah rest on him, but the generation wasn’t worthy.

Reb Meir was niftar on Rosh Chodesh Sivan 5506/1746.

His sons were the talmidei chachamim Rav Yokel, Rav of Glona and Broide; Rav Yitzchak, Rav of Altona, Hamburg and Wandsbeck (known as Ah”u); Rav Tzvi Hirsch, Rav of Tchortkov, who was the father of the Rebbe Reb Shmelke of Nikolsburg and Rav Pinchas of Frankfurt, the Haflaah; and Rav Nachum.

Zecher tzaddik livrachah.

May 26

In 1938, the House Un-American Activities Committee was established by Congress.

In 1940, Operation Dynamo, the evacuation of some 338,000 Allied troops from Dunkirk, France, began during World War II.

In 1942, the U.S. War Department formally established the Armed Forces Radio Service (AFRS).

In 1972, President Richard M. Nixon and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev signed the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in Moscow. (The U.S. withdrew from the treaty in 2002.)