This Day in History – 9 Iyar/April 24

Kever of Harav Avigdor Kara, zt”l.

9 Iyar

In 2870, the Jews went to war with the Plishtim and lost.

In 5414/1654, this date marked the end of a three-month grace period given by the Portuguese to the Jews of Brazil before they had to leave the country. Those who remained after this deadline were handed over to the infamous Inquisition.

In 5524/1764, a letter by Empress Catherine II of Russia opened the way for limited settlement of Jews in Riga.


Yahrtzeiten

5609/1849, Harav Yitzchak Bernays, zt”l, Rav of Hamburg

5686/1926, Harav Moshe Hager, Rebbe of Shatz, zt”l, son of Harav Baruch of Vizhnitz

5759/1999, Harav Moshe Hager, zt”l, Rosh Yeshivah of Seret-Vizhnitz, Haifa


5199/1439

Harav Avigdor Kara, zt”l, Rav of Prague

Harav Avigdor Kara was the son of Harav Yitzchak.

He married the sister of Harav Yehudah Lowy the first, the grandfather — and namesake — of the Maharal of Prague.

He served as Dayan in Regensburg, and later was appointed Dayan in Prague.

He served in this capacity with Harav Yom Tov Lipman Milhausen, zt”l, the mechaber of Sefer Nitzachon, and Harav Menachem Shalem.

Following the pogrom against the Jews of Prague on Acharon Shel Pesach 5549/1389, Rav Avigdor composed a kinah, “Es kol hatla’ah,” which was added to Minchah in the Nusach Ashkenaz machzor for Yom Kippur.

He also composed other piyutim, which were sung at events, as well as She’eilos U’Teshuvos, which was recently published.

According to some accounts, Rav Avigdor was prominent in the land and was friendly with King Wenceslaus of Bohemia, who liked to converse with him on religious matters. The King agreed with Rav Avigdor on many issues and gave much freedom to the Jews.

Rav Avigdor was niftar on Shabbos, 9 Iyar 5199/1439, and was buried on Sunday, 10 Iyar. His was the first kever in what would become Prague’s old cemetery.

His son Harav Avraham, zt”l, served after him as Dayan in Prague.

Zecher tzaddik livrachah.


April 24

In 1800, Congress approved a bill establishing the Library of Congress.

In 1877, federal troops were ordered out of New Orleans, ending the North’s post-Civil War rule in the South.

Sir Winston Churchill

In 1953, British statesman Winston Churchill was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.

In 1990, the space shuttle Discovery blasted off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, carrying the $1.5 billion Hubble Space Telescope.