Moses Gaster (1856-1939) was born in Romania. Like other Jewish intellectuals, he had to leave his native country and he found refuge in Vienna, then in England, where he joined the Folk-Lore Society in 1886. He collected Samaritan, Hebrew, Slavic and Arab manuscripts, but also Jewish amulets and objects of Romanian folklore. Among his most significant works on folklore are Jewish Folk-Lore in the Middle Ages (1887), Roumanian Bird and Beast Stories (1915) and Children’s Stories from RoumanianLegends and Fairy Tales (1923).
“A Bridge to the East: Moses Gaster as a Romanian Folkorist”
Simon Rabinovitch, 2015
As Chief Rabbi (Haham) of the Sephardic community in London, Moses Gaster marked a departure for the Folklore Society when he became its president in 1907 and 1908 (Gaster being the Folklore Society’s only ordained rabbi as president). Gaster was a German-educated, Bucharest Jew, from an affluent family, who found refuge in England after being expelled from Romania in 1885. Gaster’s scholarly output over the course of a career that spanned (...)