This chapter details Isaac Mayer Wise’s early years. When he was six he went to live at Durmaul with his grandfather. At Durmaul there was a Jewish ‘trivial school’ which he attended, and in the evening he received personal instruction from his grandfather. Wise was twelve when his grandfather died, and from that time onwards he made his way alone. Here, the chapter attempts to establish a chronology from 1831 to 1843, with difficulty. When Wise resolved to leave Bohemia, the fall of the Metternich regime was only two years ahead, but while Metternich was in the saddle the darkness must have seemed impenetrable and interminable. Wise held office at Radnitz in a period when religious reform shared with civil emancipation the attention of European Jewry.
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