This Day in History – December 28/13 Teves

13 Teves

In 5387/1626, the first siddur was published, by the Hebrew printing press of Amsterdam.


5495/1735, Harav Yitzchok Eizik of Ostraha, zt”l

5701/1941, Harav Menachem Mendel of Vishiva, zt”l, the Shearis Menachem

5735/1974, Harav Yechiel Mordechai Gordon, zt”l, mechaber of Nesivei Yam


Harav Moshe of Lelov, Zy”a

Harav Moshe of Lelov was born in Lelov, Poland, about 5537/1777, to Harav Dovid’l of Lelov, zy”a.

Rav Moshele’s holy qualities were apparent even in his early youth. He was a tremendous masmid, with an insatiable thirst for Torah.

After his first wife was niftar, Rav Moshele married the daughter of the Yid Hakadosh of Peshischa, zy”a. Rav Dovid’l commented to his daughter-in-law, “I have presented you with a kosher mezuzah. You must be careful not to blemish it, chalilah.”

After his wedding, Rav Moshele refused to profit from his Torah knowledge and opened a store to sell salt, but it brought in so little that he was soon forced to close it.

Rav Moshele was known and praised for his deep attachment to Eretz Yisrael. He hoped that when he would arrive there, he would be granted the opportunity to approach the Kosel Hamaaravi and pour out his heart before the One Above.

Broken in body from the travails of the journey it was impossible for him to walk to the Kosel the day he arrived. Instead, he said, he would make the trip to the Kosel after he had rested for a while and his strength had returned. However, he was overcome by illness and took to his bed. Sometime later, feeling that his end was near he informed the members of his household that he must be taken to the Kosel Hamaaravi at any price. In fact, he asked to be carried to the Kosel on a couch.

His sons, Harav Yitzchak Dovid and Harav Elazar Mendel, were the couch-bearers. They left the house and turned into a side street leading to the Kosel. Suddenly, local Arab residents pelted them with a torrent of stones. The brothers tried to continue, but the pelting increased, becoming a genuine threat to the Rebbe’s life. With no choice they retraced their steps, unable to reach the Kosel.

Shortly afterwards he took leave of his sons and promised that he would guard his descendants, and assist anyone who came to their support even after death. As soon as he concluded his words, his holy soul ascended to heaven on 13 Teves 5611/1850. He was buried on the lower slopes of Har Hazeisim. The exact location of his kever is unknown.

Zechuso yagen aleinu.

Dec. 28

In 1612, Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei observed the planet Neptune, but mistook it for a star. (Neptune wasn’t officially discovered until 1846 by Johann Gottfried Galle.)

In 1832, John C. Calhoun became the first vice president of the United States to resign, stepping down because of differences with President Andrew Jackson.

In 1945, Congress officially recognized the Pledge of Allegiance.

In 1972, Kim Il Sung, the premier of North Korea, was named the country’s president under a new constitution.

In 2001, the National Guard was called out to help Buffalo, New York, dig out from a paralyzing, 5-day storm that had unloaded nearly 7 feet of snow.

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