Synopsis of Jewish Encyclopedia

I. History, Biography, and Sociology.

  1. 1. History of the Jews, as based on the Biblical accounts and on the Discoveries in Assyria, Babylonia, Egypt, Palestine, and Persia; later phases according to the narratives of Greek and Roman authors; the Talmudic sources; modern local researches; Documents found in archives, etc.
  2. 2. General Historical Movements influencing Jewish history; such as the Crusades, the Black Death, Persecutions, Expulsions, Blood Accusation, Inquisition, Discovery of America, Reformation, the Emancipation, anti-Semitic and Zionistic movements.
  3. 3. Jewish Settlements and Congregations in the Old World and the New.
  4. 4. Jewish Societies, Religious, Literary, Philanthropic, etc, which have become an important feature in the life of the modern Jew: Fraternities and Sisterhoods, Alliance Israélite Universelle, Anglo-Jewish Association, Central Conference of American Rabbis, Deutsch-Israelitischer Gemeindebund, etc.
  5. 5. Documents having special significance with regard to the Jews and their history; such as decrees, edicts, bulls, etc.
  6. 6. Civilization (Culturgeschichte) of the Jews, including Customs, Education, Art. The part taken by the Jews in the development and advancement of civilization, in ancient, medieval, and modern times; in the arts and sciences; in statesmanship and politics, jurisprudence, sociology, and economics.
  7. 7. Historical Geography and Archeology of Palestine and other countries intimately connected with Jewish history.
  8. 8. Biography of Biblical Characters and Post-Biblical Personages: Medieval and modern men of eminence; scholars; teachers; theologians; men of letters; artists; statesmen; soldiers; inventors; philanthropists; founders of important branches of commerce and industry.
  9. 9. Distinguished Jewish Families: Their history and genealogy.
  10. 10. Accounts of Prominent Non-Jews: Kings, Popes, Statesmen, Men of Letters who have exercised influence upon Jewish history.
  11. 11. Anthropology, Biostatics, Measurements; Morbidity of Jews with special reference to their liability to, or immunity from, particular diseases; question of purity of race.
  12. 12. Sociology: Statistics of Jewish communities; occupations of Jews; number of Artisans and Agriculturists; social condition and Criminology.
  13. 13. Folk-lore; Superstitions; Customs; Folk-Medicine; Legends and Fables.

II. Literature.

  1. 1. The Old Testament: History of the Canon; Masorah; history of Bible exegesis among Jews and Christians from Talmudical times; translations of the Bible; Bible concordances and dictionaries; Biblical chronology.
  2. 2. Hellenistic Literature: Apocrypha, Apocalyptic and Pseudepigraphic Literature; New Testament in so far as it concerns Judaism.
  3. 3. Talmud and Midrash: Critical analysis of each treatise; Talmudical jurisprudence compared with Greek and Roman codes and modern law.
  4. 4. Rabbinical Literature: Commentaries and supercommentaries on Talmud and Midrash; codes of Law; Responsa, Casuistics.
  5. 5. Literature of the Middle Ages and Modern Times: Belles-Lettres; secular poetry of the medieval and modern ages; relation of Neo-Hebraic literature to the literature of the world.
  6. 6. Historical and Geographical Literature: Travels, etc.
  7. 7. Translations by Jews in the Middle Ages and in recent times.
  8. 8. Dialect-Literature: Ladino, Judæo-German, and Yiddish.
  9. 9. Periodical Literature; annuals; quarterlies; monthly, weekly, and daily papers; almanacs.
  10. 10. Hebrew Philology; history and principles of Hebrew Grammar and Lexicography; prosody.
  11. 11. Hebrew Bibliography; Paleography; Typography; Catalogues; History of Jewish libraries; History of Hebrew book-trade.
  12. 12. History of Jewish Learning and Education; the Academies; elementary Schools (ḥedarim); History of the Yeshibot and modern Rabbinical seminaries.

III. Theology and Philosophy.

  1. 1. Doctrines of Judaism in their development from Biblical times. Angelology; Demonology; Eschatology; Creeds; Attributes of Deity; Free Will and Providence; Problem of Evil; Sin and Atonement, etc.
  2. 2. Relation of Judaism to Christianity, Islam, and other religions; Conversion and Apostasy; Apologetic and Polemic literature.
  3. 3. Jewish Religious Life in home and synagogue: Sacrifices; Festivals; Priesthood; Temple; Customs; Ceremonies; Ritual Observances.
  4. 4. Synagogue Liturgy, Poetry, and Music; History of Reform Movement in Europe and America.
  5. 5. Jewish Sects: Pharisees; Sadducees; Essenes; Therapeutæ; Samaritans; Karaites; Sabbatarians; Ḥasidim; Frankists; and minor sects; Messianic movements.
  6. 6. Jewish Philosophy: Alexandrian School; Religious Philosophy in the Middle Ages; Cabala; Systems of Jewish philosophers.
  7. 7. Jewish Ethics in its historic development; Altruism and Hedonism; Motives and Standard; Ideals; Ethical Wills.
  8. 8. Homiletical Literature and history of modern pulpit eloquence.