49 Letter by Theodor Herzl


A letter by Theodor Herzl to Adolf Ágai on the Die Welt letterheaded paper

Vienna, May 6, 1898

Paper, ink, handwriting

Acquisition, 1933

Theodor Herzl, who, as a Viennese journalist ,made good on his dreams and became  the father of the modern Jewish state, was born in Budapest in 1860 and lived here until 1878.  In 1897, after calling the first Zionist Congress, he wrote in his diary: ‘ In Basel I have founded the Jewish State, and if somebody may laugh at this now, wait for five or fifty years at the most and you will see’. In his letter written to his oldest friend, Adolf Ágai, he also says why he does not think that his plan is a utopia. He calls his friend, the editor of the most popular satirical magazine, Borsszem Jankó(Jack the Bean),‘mybeloved master’and makes reference in Hungarian to the character of Ágai appearing in the magazine as ‘the dreadful cursing of Salamon Seiffensteiner ‘. The letter was purchased in 1933 by the Jewish Museum with the financial support of the Pest Israelite Community.