This Day In History 23 Sivan/June 6

In 5558/1798, numerous Jews were murdered in Pesaro, Italy, following the retreat of Napoleon’s army. The community observed a fast to mark the event.


Yahrtzeiten

5285/1525, Harav Avraham Mintz of Padwa, zt”l;

Harav Yaakov Pollack, the Ba’al Hachilukim, zt”l

5640/1880, Harav Yehoshua Heller, zt”l, mechaber of Chosen Yehoshua, Divrei Yehoshua and more

5659/1899, Harav Hillel Milikovski of Salant, zt”l, a talmid of Harav Yisrael of Salant

5764/2004, Harav Yisrael Mordechai Twersky, Rachmistrivka Rebbe of Yerushalayim, zy”a

5776/2016, Harav Alter Yitzchok Elimelech Safrin, zy”a, Komarna Rebbe of Boro Park


5646/1886

Harav Yehudah Assad, one of Hungarian Jewry’s best-known and most prominent Rabbanim, was born in 5557/1797 in Assad. His father, Harav Yisrael, zt”l, a tailor by trade, was a fervent yerei Shamayim and a big baal chesed.

Young Yehudah stood out in his class for his diligence and his asceticism, learning Torah with fervor.

After the death of his father, his widowed mother sent him, at the age of ten, to learn in the yeshivah of Harav Yehoshua Falk Bichler, zt”l, Rav of Sudietz, a close talmid of the Chasam Sofer.

When Rav Yehoshua Falk realized his potential, he drew him close, literally making him a member of his household. Later, he sent him on to the yeshivah of his brother, Harav Aharon Bichler, zt”l, Rav of Serdehaly.

Eventually, Yehudah moved on to Nikolsburg to learn under Harav Mordechai Banet, zt”l. For the rest of his life, Reb Yehudah was close to Rav Mordechai, considering himself his humble talmid.

Rav Yehudah married the daughter of Harav Meir Abanani, zt”l. He later settled in Serdehaly where he served as Rav despite his young age.

Five years later, Rav Yehudah become Rav of Reteh, a city near Pressburg. He was there for four years, and then took the position of Rav in Seminetz. He also established a yeshivah. Eventually, he returned to Serdehaly.

Rabbanim from all over sent him intricate she’eilos, as evident from the thousands in his sefarim.

Rav Yehudah combated the Haskalah as the movement tried to undermine authentic Judaism.

In his last years, he lost his son-in-law, Harav Yonah Reichart, zt”l, Rav of Kaltaha, and his son, the yungerman, Harav Mordechai, who left behind a widow and many orphans.

On the night of 23 Sivan, 5646/1886, Rav Yehudah felt his end was imminent. He lay down in bed and returned his holy neshamah to its Maker. He was eighty-nine years old.

Many of the local Yidden gathered outside his house despite the late hour, reciting Tehillim throughout the night. At the levayah more than twenty hespeidim were delivered for this gadol hador, from ten in the morning until eight at night, after which Rav Yehudah was buried with great honor in Serdehaly.

Rav Yehudah wrote Sheilos U’Teshuvos Yehuda Yaaleh on Shulchan Aruch. Another sefer, Chiddushei Mahari on Pirkei Avos, was published recently.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.


June 6

In 1809, Sweden adopted a new constitution.

In 1918, U.S. Marines suffered heavy casualties as they launched their eventually successful counteroffensive against German troops in the World War I Battle of Belleau Wood in France.

In 1925, Walter Percy Chrysler founded the Chrysler Corp.

In 1944, during World War II, Allied forces stormed the beaches of Normandy, France, on D-Day, as they began the liberation of German-occupied Western Europe.