Golem - Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion
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Picture of paper golem wearing a golem tshirtGOLEM: a creature, made in an artificial way by virtue of a magic act, through the use of holy names. The development of the idea of the golem in Judaism is connected with the magical exegesis of the Sefer Yezirah ("Book of Creation") and with the ideas of the creative power of speech and of the letters. Legends about the powers of such creatures were very popular among many communities in Europe.

small golemOne of the best-known forms of the legend was connected with Judah Loew ben Bezalel of Prague during the second half of the 18th century. According to these legends, R. Loew created the golem so that he would serve him, but was forced to restore him to his dust when the golem began to run amok and endanger people's lives.

golem icon This display reflects some literary and artistic treatments of the Golem legend, from its inception in medieval times to today’s science fiction and graphic novels.

Here's the Gallery of local Golem creations.

Golem in the HUC-JIR catalog.


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