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LEESER, ISAAC (1806-1868).

American religious leader. A rabbi and founder of Maimonides College in Philadelphia, he came to the U.S. while still in his teens. He became a journalist and editor. In 1829, he became Rabbi of Congregation Mikveh Israel in Philadelphia, where he introduced an English sermon into synagogue services. He opposed Reform and carried on a strenuous campaign for the preservation of traditional Judaism. His work and thought were reflected in the pages of The Occident, a magazine he edited for 26 years. His 1853 Bible translation served American Jewry as the accepted English version for more than 50 years.

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