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1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 The next baptism was less melodramatic. In 1728 or 1729 Lehmann Weil, son of Samuel and brother of Marum the Fat, was baptized with the name Anthoni Joseph Ernst (sic) so he could stay in Donaueschingen [R4570].

2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 In February 1733, a young boy named Abraham, son of Mayer Weil (U1.1.1) in Horheim, supposedly mentioned to a farmer, for whom he did a variety of chores, that he was interested in being baptized. He was immediately taken from his home and baptized by April. A short time later, his eight-year-old brother was also forcefully removed from home and baptized, despite the vigorous but ineffectual protests of the Jewish community. The prince’s intervention contravened the decree of Pope Martin V, declared February 12, 1418 in Constance,69 and the subsequent official clarifications by the pope’s private secretary Ludwig Alamandi,70 which explicitly forbade the baptism of Jewish children less than twelve years old against their parents’ will. The long arm of the prince eventually apprenticed the older brother with a cobbler at state expense.71

3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0 The last, complex case led to two conversions; its sordid details would have marked it fit for the tabloids, had they existed in those days. Sometime in early 1732, the wealthy merchant Simon Weyl (W1.2), under protection in Donaueschingen, and the cattle dealer Menke Bloch (C2.1.2.1.1) in Stühlingen agreed on an engagement contract between Simon’s daughter Vögele and Menke’s son Mauschi (C2.1.2.1.1.2), despite the social gap that separated them. Menke managed to include a clause according to which Simon’s brother Marum the Fat would obtain a letter of protection for Mauschi from the prince, or else pay him the sum of 100 fl. The marriage was set for April 1732, but April passed without the nuptials taking place. Simon sued for breach of contract. The defendant Menke countered that neither the letter of protection nor the 100 fl. had been provided, and for this reason the wedding could not proceed. Whether the letter of protection would be valid in Donaueschingen or in Stühlingen also seemed to be a point of contention. Marum argued that the prince had been abroad, and the unavailability of his Highness was insufficient cause to delay the wedding. The court agreed but referred the decision on the question of the validity of  the letter in Donaueschingen or Stühlingen to a rabbi, since the original contract was written in Hebrew. The wedding nevertheless was to take place. Father Menke and grandfather Meyer Bloch (C2.1.2.1) were held jointly responsible, on penalty of imprisonment, for keeping the hesitant groom from absconding [R2318].

4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0 Four days later the case was again in front of the court. The situation must have appeared considerably more urgent to the desperate father of the bride than it did to the reluctant groom or his scheming father. In the meantime, two Jews present in Stühlingen, plus Marum Weyl, Sandel’s son (S1.2.1), were consulted on the matter. They declared unanimously that the contract had to be considered as a whole; one condition could not be fulfilled without the other. However, the insertion in the contract of only an abbreviation for Donaueschingen had been deceitful and served to confuse the issue. The authorities claimed neutrality and ordered the wedding to proceed within fourteen days, unless a rabbi declared the contract invalid. A 100 fl. bond was deposited at court, and no further appeal from either party would be heard [R2321].

5 Leave a comment on paragraph 5 0  

69Stern, “Urkundliche Beiträge,” 21–2.

70Ibid., 22–4.

Page 94

Source: https://www.stuehlingen.online/Book/?page_id=1813

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