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Between integration and tradition

Munkácsi Bernát fiához, Ernőhöz írt levelezőlapja <br /><i><span style="font-weight:400;">Bernát Munkácsi’s postcard written to his son, Ernő</span></i>

Between integration and tradition 

As the Munk family became acculturated to secular Hungarian life, there were growing tensions between old and new. In 1851, Be’er Dov Munk scolded his adult son Adolf Munk for not using his Hebrew name, Meir Avraham, telling him: "Our Sages, may their memories be blessed, said we were delivered from Egyptian on account of three virtues, one of which was that they had not changed their names.” Similarly, in August 1930, Bernát Munkácsi reprimanded his son Ernő for having ambitions inappropriate for “simple” Jews: “I find it distasteful to give more names (especially three), because it is the symbol of ambition to push forward to the ranks of the aristocracy. A simple Jewish woman does not have three given names, and so I cannot imagine whose example you are following.” Hence the newborn received only two names: Mária Veronika.