This Day in History – 18 Iyar/May 26

According to the Midrash, the talmidim of Rabi Akiva stopped dying after 24,000 perished.

In 5708/1948, the Arabs blew up the Churvah shul in the Old City of Yerushalayim.


3981/221 C.E., the Tanna Rabi Shimon bar Yochai, zy”a, mechaber of the holy Zohar. After being hidden for 1,000 years, the Zohar was discovered by Harav Moshe de Leon of Spain.

5332/1572, Harav Moshe Isserles, the Rema, zt”l

5588/1828, Harav Shlomo of Kshanov, zt”l

5758/1998, Harav Mordechai Yaffe Schlesinger, zt”l, mechaber of Sfas Hame’il, Mishbirei Yam, and Mira Dachya.

5755/2005, Harav Alter Eliyahu Rubinstein, zt”l, Rav of Khal Machzikei Hadas, Antwerp

5649/1889, Harav Uri Langer of Ruhatin, zt”l

Rav Uri was the son of Rav Yitzchak Langer, Rav in Tartikov.

He was a talmid of Harav Yisrael of Ruzhin and of Harav Yitzchak Eizik of Ziditchov.

He married the daughter of Rav Avraham of Stretin. When Rav Avraham was niftar on 3 Teves 5625/1865, he left no sons; Reb Uri, his son-in-law, was appointed Rebbe in Ruhatin in his place.

Most of the Stretiner Chassidim traveled to his court. Reb Uri himself would often go to his Chassidim in the outlying cities.

He was known for his fervent tefillos, in the traditional Stretiner style, and for his mofsim.

Reb Uri had many chumros, especially in regard to kashrus. An ascetic, he ate only the minimum that was absolutely necessary.

Reb Uri was niftar on 18 Iyar, Lag BaOmer, 5649/1889, in Ruhatin. He was survived by his sons, Rav Yehudah Tzvi of Stretin, Rav Yitzchak Aharon of Ruhatin and Rav Yisrael of Brod.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.

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 1941, the American Flag House, where Betsy Ross once lived, was donated to the city of Philadelphia.

In 1969, the Apollo 10 astronauts returned to Earth after a successful eight-day dress rehearsal for the first manned moon landing.