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📖 (רפורמי) Prayer Book of the St. George’s Settlement Synagogue, by Basil Lucas Quixano Henriques (1929)

Prayer Book of the St. George’s Settlement Synagogue, compiled by Basil Lucas Quixano Henriques in 1929, contains services for Shabbat, Rosh haShanah (with readings), and a selection of teḥinot (“special prayers for private worship) and hymns (“anthems”). As explained in his preface, the special prayers are taken from The Fratres Book of Prayer (Henriques 1916) — a good thing as copies of that small prayerbook are quite hard to find.


This work will soon be unambiguously in the Public Domain due to it having been published nearly ninety-five years ago. Until that time, as this work has less than twenty years before the term of its copyright expires, this work is redistributed under our Reproduction Right (17 U.S. Code §108 – Limitations on exclusive rights: Reproduction by libraries and archives), under United States Copyright law.


This prayer book has been compiled for the use of the members of the St. George’s Settlement Synagogue for the weekly Sabbath Services, for the New Year, and for private worship.

The Services do not wholly correspond with any which are at present in existence. In the main, they take the traditional form. But as they are intended for use in a Progressive Synagogue, the aim throughout has been to prove that through such a form modern thought can be expressed. It is hoped that there is no prayer which conflicts with the thoughts and aspirations of that type of Judaism for which the Synagogue stands.

Many of the translations are taken directly from the Authorised Orthodox, the West London and the Liberal Jewish prayer books. Some, however, are not translations at all, but paraphrases, and the English has been so altered as almost to change the original sense. Such prayers will probably be read in English, and the Hebrew has been retained in order to show the ancient thought upon which the modern interpretation is based.

The supplementary prayers are taken from “The Fratres Prayer Book” (compiled by me for the members of the Oxford and St. George’s Jewish Lads’ Club in 1916) and from “Prayers for Trench and Base” (which I published for the use of Jewish troops during the war in 1918), many of which had themselves been adapted from the Liberal Jewish Prayer Book.

I have to thank Mr. C.G. Montefiore, my friend and master, for the personal help he has given me in connection with this book. He is in no way responsible, however, for the form of the Services, which I believe to be of such a kind as to meet the requirements of my congregation in East London.

I would also like to thank my colleague, Mr. A. Pulverness, without whose aid the synagogue would never have been founded, for the assistance he has given me in the preparation of this prayer book.

I pray that Almighty God may grant that this book may help to consolidate and strengthen those who have now worshipped together in East London since 1919, and that through it the doctrines of Progressive Judaism may be more widely spread and understood.

May, 1929.




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