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Rabbi Asher Grunis

A collection of documents from the archive of Rabbi Asher Grunis, the first communal Rav of Cardiff (1921–1937). These include photographs, letters, newspaper articles and other items and vividly demonstrate his main interests.

Rabbi Asher Grunis was born in Pietrokov in Poland in 1877. He married Hannah Baila in 1896 and they had seven sons and one daughter. In 1902 he was appointed Rabbi of Wilczyn in Poland. In 1921 he was appointed the first communal Rav of Cardiff, overseeing the correct application of Jewish religious dietary laws. Five of the sons and one daughter came with their parents to Cardiff and one son, Hirsch, was a minister to the Bangor and Bettws-y-Coed communities before the war.

Rabbi Grunis successfully campaigned to permit Jewish children to leave school early in winter on the Sabbath, and prevent Jewish students being forced to take examinations on Saturdays and Jewish Holy days. He also unsuccessfully tried to have kosher food available to Cardiff prisoners throughout the year. He died in July 1937 and he and his wife are buried in Highfields Jewish cemetery. His major work, a commentary titled P’ri Asher (Fruits of Asher), was published posthumously.

There are 19 items in this collection

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