Daniel Deronda

Mary Anne Evans (1819 – 1880), known by her pen name George Eliot, was an English novelist, poet, journalist, translator and one of the leading writers of the Victorian era. She published her novel Daniel Deronda in 1876. The setting is London.

One of the characters in the story is Mordecai who passionately proclaims his wish for the Jewish people to retain their national identity and one day be restored to their Promised Land. Mordecai is ill and nearing death. He has written a manuscript of his vision in Hebrew which he desires Daniel Deronda to publish.

But other Jews do not share Mordecai’s enthusiasm and critize him for writing in Hebrew rather than Engish. One argues “The Book of Mormon would never have answered in Hebrew; and if you mean to address our learned men, it is not likely you can teach them anything.”

This is a curious reference. No further mention of the Book of Mormon is given in the novel.

As for the Book of Mormon in Hebrew . . .

– Tom Irvine

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