87. szám // 2022. Zsidó felemelkedés vagy térnyerés?


Megjelent: 2022.08.

Michael L. Miller

„Testestül-lelkestül magyarrá lett” Jellinek Mór (1824–1883) és a magyar gazdaság modernizációja.

“He Became Hungarian in Body and Soul”: Moritz Jellinek (1824–1883) and the Modernization of the Hungarian Economy

DOI: 10.52656/KORALL.2022.01.006


Moritz Jellinek (1824–1883) was the younger brother of Adolf, a celebrated Viennese rabbi and scholar, and Hermann, a journalist and revolutionary executed in 1848. Born in Moravia, he moved to Pest in 1850, and became involved in almost all the institutions central to the modernization of the Hun- garian economy. He was, among others, a founding member of the Pester Lloyd Society, of the First Hungarian Insurance Company, a member of the National Hungarian Economic Association, and a founder of the Grain Exchange in Pest, later incorporated into the Commodity and Stock Exchange. He was a board member of the Pest Academy of Commerce, and he published regularly on mat- ters of political economy. In collaboration with Sándor Károlyi (1831–1906) and Ernő Hollán (1824–1900), Moritz’s crowning achievement was the found- ing of the first (horse-drawn) Tramway Company, the forerunner of Budapest’s public transport system. Moritz Jellinek’s achievements are all the more remark- able considering that they took place before the emancipation of Hungarian Jewry in 1867. Jellinek was aware of the context of his own achievements – as well as the passions they could ignite. In the 1860s, he penned apologetic essays, which presented the economic activities of Hungarian Jewry as the fulfillment of their patriotic duty vis-à-vis the Hungarian state. Jellinek understood the symbolic importance of learning the Hungarian language and identifying with the Hungarian nation. “He was not born in this land,” observed the Vasárnapi Ujság, “but his heart and tongue were fully magyarized and he reared his four sons in the Magyar spirit”. In the 1850s, 1860s and 1870s, Hungary offered Jellinek a hospitable political environment that not only valued the entrepre- neurial skills he had brought with him from Moravia, but also viewed his finan- cial and commercial activities as an integral part of the nation-building process.