Menu JTA Search

Mordechai Newman Dead at 85

Mordechai Newman, a pioneer book publisher in Israel, died at Kibbutz Mishmar Haemek July 16 at the age of 85, it was learned here today. Born in Lodz, Poland, Newman came to the United States at the age of 18. During World War I, he joined the Jewish Legion of the British army and served in Palestine.

After the war, he and two other veterans of the Legion founded a chain of book stores in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa and other communities called Tarbuth. They founded the Mizpa Publishing Company in the 1920s and Newman was credited with providing Hebrew translations of the works of leading international authors. He was responsible for calling attention to Y.S. Agnon, who later became the only Israeli author to win the Nobel Prize.

The company was disbanded during World War II, but after the war Newman started his own publishing house, M. Newman Publishing Ltd., in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. He was also a former chairman of the Kupat Bank Ltd.

Up to his death, while living with his daughter at Mishnar Haemek, he maintained an apartment in Tel Aviv and devoted most of his time to the publication of “Shnaton,” an annual for Biblical and ancient Near East studies. He was buried last Friday at the kibbutz.

NEXT STORY