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Holocaust expert Elisabeth Maxwell dies at 92

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(JTA) — Elisabeth Maxwell, an expert on the Holocaust and widow of the media tycoon Robert Maxwell, has died.

The New York Times reported that she died Wednesday in Dordogne, France, quoting her daughter, Ghislaine. She was 92.

Maxwell, who was not Jewish, devoted her adult life to Holocaust education and Jewish-Christian relations. She was the editor of two books on the Holocaust and wrote her autobiography in 1994.

She was married to newspaper magnate Robert Maxwell for 46 years until his death amid mysterious circumstances in 1991 after having apparently fallen overboard from his yacht.

Maxwell said she discovered that more than 300 of her husband’s relatives had died in the Holocaust when she was creating a family tree for the benefit of their children.

“When it was finished, I gave it to Yad Vashem,” she told the London Jewish Chronicle in 2005. “It was in the form of a concertina. I had put a golden Star of David by each of the names of those who were killed in the Holocaust. When it was unfolded, it was like a shower of stars.”

Born in France in 1921, Maxwell was educated in law at the Sorbonne and then studied modern languages at Oxford, where she earned a doctorate in philosophy.

She was an honorary fellow of the Woolf Institute in Cambridge, which promotes the study of relations among Jews, Christians and Muslims.

 

 

 

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