This is the anthology of teḥinot, Devotional Exercises for the Use of Jewish Women on Public and Domestic Occasions (1852), translated by Miriam Wertheimer from Taḥnunei bat Yehudah (1846) by Meïr Letteris. (On the title page and the preface, the author of the work translated by Wertheimer was somehow misidentified as Wolfgang Wessely.) Wertheimer’s translation used the second edition of Taḥnunei bat Yehudah from 1852.
Wertheimer dedicated her translation to her friend, writing, “To my beloved friend Hester, This Hester was none other than Hester Rothschild (née Leverson/Levyson, 1821-1880), author of Imrei Lev: Prayers and Meditations (1855), her abridged translation of the French compilation of teḥinot and paraliturgical prayers, Imrei Lev: Prières d’un Cœur Israelite (1848, 1852) by Jonas Ennery and Rabbi Arnaud Aron. Letteris is also cited as as source for the prayers in the preface of the latter volume. this little volume is inscribed, as a slight tribute of affection, and in recognition of her many virtues as a Daughter of Israel, by her friend, the Translator. Birmingham, April, 1852.” From the List of Subscribers at the end of her translation, we can deduce that Miriam’s friend Hester was none other than Hester Rothschild (née Leverson) who in 1855 published her own translation of an anthology of teḥinot.
Every incident of our existence is calculated to excite admiration at the marvellous workings of Providence, and to elicit from the grateful heart expressions of devotion and thankfulness. Pious men of all ages have compiled services rich in sacred eloquence, and adapted for every purpose of public worship. But there are occasions of a special nature, which would seem to require a more peculiar form of prayer and praise; bringing the soul, like the primitive adorations of the early patriarchs, into immediate communion, as if listening to, and conversing with, its Divine Progenitor. More especially are such prayers required by the daughters of Israel; many of whom, though animated with fervent piety and gratitude, seek in vain for words expressive of their ardent feelings, and the meek but heavenward aspirations which elevate their souls amidst every daily duty, every earthly occurrence. The daughter of Israel feels that there are times and seasons, holy festivals, and sacred observances, when she would wish to meet with a concise form of prayer, echoing the sentiments of her heart, suited to all occasions, and ready to fill all vacant intervals. Among our continental neighbours, this want has been already recognized and responded to; men of eminent piety have not disdained to exert their mental and literary endowments in the compilation of a compendium for the use of our sex, fitted for all periods of public worship or special observance. The most celebrated is that arranged by
Dr. Wolfgang Wessely, It is unclear how such an error was made, but the source of the work translated is undoubtedly that of Dr. Meïr Letteris. a faithful translation of which is now offered to the English public. It will be found simple, but energetic; humbly devout, yet fervently eloquent; equally suited for the house of prayer or the retirement of the closet. These addresses are penned in so genuine and unaffected a style, that they come home to every bosom, and awaken the sympathies in every circumstance of existence, gladdening the soul in prosperity, and awakening consolation even in the gloom of adversity.
Prayer on entering the House of God (after “Gebet beim Eintritt in das Gotteshaus”)
Prayer for the Sabbath
Prayer before the Consecration of the New Moon
Prayer at the conclusion of Service
Prayer for a Fast-Day
Prayer for the eve of the New Moon Elul
Prayer for the first of the Penitential Days before the New Year
Prayer before taking out the Law on the New Year and Day of Atonement
Prayer before the sounding of the Shofar
Prayer for the New Year and Day of Atonement, before the Reader says—”it is incumbent upon us,” etc.
Prayer when the “Cohanim” (Descendants of Aaron) have pronounced the Priestly Benediction
Prayer for the Days of Penitence
Prayer for the repose of departed souls
Prayer at the conclusion of the Day of Atonement
Prayer for the Passover
Prayer for the Feast of Weeks
Prayer for the Festival of Tabernacles
Contemplation on the Four Species of plants, to be said on the Feast of Tabernacles before the prescribed blessing
Prayer for a woman who is about to become a mother, after the Benediction of the Citron
Prayer for a maiden
Domestic Prayer on dividing the dough
Prayer before lighting the Sabbath lamp
Prayer for a woman who feels herself a mother
Prayer for a Sabbath, on which is celebrated some family festivity, such as the anniversary of a marriage, the circumcision of a son, etc.
Prayer for a woman arising from her confinement
Prayer for a woman whose child is borne to the circumcision
Prayer in dangerous illness
Prayer for a wife when sickness has befallen her husband
Prayer for a widow
Prayer for an orphan
Prayer when epidemic diseases prevail
Prayer said on every Penitential and Fast-Day
|1||This Hester was none other than Hester Rothschild (née Leverson/Levyson, 1821-1880), author of Imrei Lev: Prayers and Meditations (1855), her abridged translation of the French compilation of teḥinot and paraliturgical prayers, Imrei Lev: Prières d’un Cœur Israelite (1848, 1852) by Jonas Ennery and Rabbi Arnaud Aron. Letteris is also cited as as source for the prayers in the preface of the latter volume.|
|2||It is unclear how such an error was made, but the source of the work translated is undoubtedly that of Dr. Meïr Letteris.|
“📖 Devotional Exercises for the Use of Jewish Women on Public and Domestic Occasions, an anthology of teḥinot by Miriam Wertheimer (1852) translated from the work of Dr. Meïr Letteris (1846)” is shared through the Open Siddur Project with a Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication 1.0 Universal license.
Works of related interest:
📖 Hours of Devotion: A Book of Prayers & Meditations for the Use of the Daughters of Israel, an anthology of teḥinot compiled by Rabbi Moritz Mayer (1866)
📖 אמרי לב (Imrei Lev) Prières D’un Cœur Israélite, a collection of paraliturgical prayers and teḥinot in French by Jonas Ennery & Rabbi Arnaud Aron (1848/53)
📖 אמרי לב | Prayers and Meditations, and abridged translation by Hester Rothschild (1855) of a collection of teḥinot and paraliturgial prayers by Rabbi Arnaud Aron & Jonas Ennery (1852)
📖 תפלות בני ישורון (רפורמי) | Selected Prayers for Various Occasions in Life, by Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise (Minhag America, 1872)
📖 תָּחֲנוּנֵי בַּת יְהוּדָה (Taḥnunei bat Yehudah): Andachtsbuch für Israelitische Frauenzimmer, an anthology of teḥinot in German by Meïr haLevi Letteris (1846)
📖 Die Fromme Zionstochter: Andachtsbuch für Israels Frauen und Mädchen, an anthology of teḥinot in German by Max Emanuel Stern (1841, 1846)