A Jewish Tale - The Rabbi's Bogey Man

  • The Rabbi's Bogey-Man

  • Narrator

    Rabbi Lion, of the ancient city of Prague, sat in his study in the Ghetto looking very troubled.

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  • Through the window he could see the River Moldau with the narrow streets of the Jewish quarter clustered around the cemetery, which still stands to-day, and where is to be seen this famous man's tomb.

  • Beyond the Ghetto rose the towers and spires of the city, but just at that moment it was not the cruelty of the people to the Jews that occupied the rabbi's thoughts.

  • Narrator

    He was unable to find a servant, even one to attend the fire on the Sabbath for him.

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  • The truth was that the people were a little afraid of the rabbi.

  • He was a very learned man, wise and studious, and a scientist; and because he did wonderful things people called him a magician.

  • Narrator

    His experiments in chemistry frightened them.

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  • Late at nights they saw little spurts of blue and red flame shine from his window, and they said that demons and witches came at his beck and call.

  • So nobody would enter his service.

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    Rabbi

    "If, as they declare, I am truly a magician,”

  • Rabbi

    he said to himself,

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  • Profile Picture of Rabbi in A Jewish Tale - The Rabbi's Bogey Man

    Rabbi

    “why should I not make for myself a servant, one that will tend the fire for me on the Sabbath?”

  • Narrator

    He set to work on his novel idea and in a few weeks had completed his mechanical creature, a woman.

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  • She looked like a big, strong, laboring woman, and the rabbi was greatly pleased with his handiwork.

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    Rabbi

    “Now to endow it with life,”

  • Narrator

    he said.

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  • Carefully, in the silence of his mysterious study at midnight, he wrote out the Unpronounceable Sacred Name of God on a piece of parchment.

  • Then he rolled it up and placed it in the mouth of the creature.

  • Narrator

    Immediately it sprang up and began to move like a living thing.

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