Aguilar, Grace

Aguilar, Grace, an English Jewish authoress, was born at Hackney, near London, June 2, 1816. She was a descendant of a family of Hebrew merchants in Spain, who had fled from that country on account of religions persecution, and found a refuge in England. She died at Frankfort, in Germany, Sept. 16,1847. A writer in the. Jewish Chronicle in 1874 says:

"No Jewish female author has attained the general and well-deserved popularity achieved by Grace Aguilar. Her numerous literary productions have been read and appreciated in England, America, Germany, and France. Her Women of Israel is a work stamped with the most ardent zeal and fervent piety, in every line of which breathe the national 'sentiment and the true patriotism which are the characteristics of her writings. It is a book teeming with powerful lessons to her own sex and eloquent exhortation to the opposite sex. She desired to. elevate the character of the women of Israel. She has shown that when all the nations of the East degraded females, the exalted Jewish code gave them an equality in civil and religious institutions suitable to women's mind and to their special mission. She has also demonstrated that many women in Israel have been the exponents of the noblest sentiments and the most sublime actions. Her Spirit of Judaism and Jewish Faith are likewise works of considerable merit, and full of that pious fervor and filial affections which carry the reader along with her and impress him with profound sympathy for the writer. Her Jewish Faith displays signs of no mean acquaintance with Jewish and Christian philosophers and -divines, and its logical reasoning is far from betrays the sex of the author. With all her abilities, which were of no ordinary range, she was humble and unassuming, kind to all, and greatly attached to her parents. The ambition of Grace Aguilar was neither for wealth, f(r reputation, nor for distinction. The pure consciousness of raising the literary and religions character of the Jewish race in general and of her own sex in particular was at the same time her guiding motive and her reward." See Furst, Bibl. Jud. i, 21; Morals, Eminent Israelites of the 19th Century (Phila. 1880), p. 12 sq. (B. P.)

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