Anti-Talmudists a name given to all those Jews who reject the Talmud, whether they adhere to the teachings of the Old Testament or not. By far the greater portion of the Anti-Talmudists have gone further than simply to reject the Rabbinical teachings. They have also rejected the Old Testament and sunk down to infidelity. With many their infidelity is a mere negation; they have renounced authority, and can receive nothing without evidence. Still, they are open to conviction. Another and increasing party place themselves in direct and active antagonism to all systems of belief, which they regard as fettering the understanding and unnecessarily restraining the inclination. In Germany and elsewhere on the Continent of Europe, the writings of Moses Mendelssohn (q.v.) have done much to alienate the Jews from all the old standards, and spread abroad a reckless spirit of speculation and infidelity. Rationalism has taken the place of Judaism. Since the death of Mendelssohn, in 1785, the Anti-Talmudists have been every year growing in numbers in Europe. SEE KARAITES.

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