MembersThe Name Behind the Street – Rabbi Dr. Yehuda Bivas

Few today know it, but a small alleyway in Jerusalem is named for a rabbi who influenced Simon Herzl to teach his grandson, Theodor, to be a Zionist

By Tsvi Sadan | | Topics: The Name Behind the Street
Bivas Street in downtown Jerusalem. Photo: Esti Eliraz

Many of the streets in Israel immortalize the names of people, events, places, etc that have made a mark in the modern history of the Zionist movement that brought Israel into being. This series tells the stories hidden behind the plain, often unnoticed, street signs.


Bivas St.

Jerusalem is the only city in Israel to name a street after Rabbi Dr. Yehuda Bivas. This street, which is more of an alley, named in 1958, is located close to Machaneh Yehuda Market.

Yehuda Aryeh Leon Bivas (1789-1852) is perhaps the earliest modern precursor of Zionism. Bivas (the English on the sign is misspelled), was a descendant of those Jewish families expelled from Spain who ended up in the Moroccan city of Tetuán, in which Jews continued speaking Spanish until they all left the city during the second half of the 20th century. Bivas was born in Gibraltar, where his family moved after the 1859-1860 Spanish-Morocco war, which included a little-known Spanish pogrom in Tetuán.

After his father’s death, Bivas went to...

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