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 Post subject: Re: Caro-Khan Defence
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 7:18 pm 
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Gordon Cadden wrote:
He would have discovered that he was also facing internment in the land of his birth, and so he went into hiding, amongst the Sephardim community of Mile End, East London. This is all supposition, but I believe the likely explanation for his disappearance from the chess scene, and his subsequent tragic demise.
It's probably worth mentioning that the adjective is Sephardic, nouns Sephardi (singular) and Sephardim (plural).

A Jew from Prussia was unlikely to have been Sephardic. Although, I admit, I usually associate Caro with the Sephardim.

Sephardic Jews hailed from Spain. The big expulsion was in 1492. Many Spanish Jews converted to Roman Catholicism (technically conversos, although the vernacular was marrano, which was Spanish for pig). This didn't always save them from the tender mercies of the Inquisition. Anyone of Spanish descent bearing that family name is quite likely to have Marrano antecedents. Most of the exiles fled to territories subject to the Ottomans. The ones who fled north gravitated to the Low Countries (some later ended up in England). They remembered their roots: at Rocroi (1643), a crushing defeat of the Spanish at the hands of the French, many of the wounded Spanish tercios were supposed to have been solicitously tended by Sephardim, they hadn't forgotten the lost glories of Al Andalus.

There are burial grounds for both the Ashkenazim and Sephardim at Mile End. That should be sufficient to determine which grouping could lay claim to Horatio Caro. I have a vague recollection that the Sephardic burial ground has been sold to property speculators: it might be worth checking that it is there, before anyone ventures forth.

If there was a Sephardic community at Mile End in 1920, it would have been greatly outnumbered by the Ashkenazim. At that point in time the Sephardic population in England tended to be wealthier and older than the Ashkenazim. It had been settled for some time, whereas most of the Ashkenazim were recent refugees from Czarist Russia. It seems odd that a German Jew would have ended up in Mile End, unless he had encountered hard times. There were eighteenth century ordinances barring indigent Jews from the Prussian seat of power. I can't remember if there were similar prohibitions for other towns in the domains of the Hohenzollerns. This was why the Berlin Jewish community of the 1930s was more prosperous than the Viennese. Note that German Jews in the 1930s sometimes referred to those from further east as Ostjuden, it was a derogatory, not a neutral, term. Their attitudes in earlier times did not differ greatly. This is yet another reason why it is strange that Caro ended up at Mile End: as stated, poverty does look the likely explanation.

Fear of internment during the Great War is a possibility, but I thought internment ended in 1919. To be taken up again for the Second World War.

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 Post subject: Re: Caro-Khan Defence
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2011 7:40 pm 
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Thank you for that interesting information on Jewish History Simon. Have now visited the grave of Horatio Caro, at the United Synagogue Cemetery in East Ham. A small plaque shows his name, and the date of death. There is no family dedication in his honour. The grave is tidy, with a white gravel bed, and stressed concrete surround.
Horatio played a game at the Metropolitan Chess Club, on the 14th. October, 1908. His opponent was Thomas Francis Lawrence, the City of London Champion. The game was drawn. His brother Lionel, was living in London during this period. He disappeared from the chess world in 1911.


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 Post subject: Re: Caro-Khan Defence
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2011 2:00 pm 
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Gordon Cadden wrote:
... United Synagogue Cemetery in East Ham ...
This, coupled with the links to Prussia, make it close to a certainty that Caro was Ashkenazi.

Given that he died in 1920, was he one of the countless victims of the Spanish Influenza?

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 Post subject: Re: Caro-Khan Defence
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2011 5:05 pm 
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Simon Spivack wrote:
Sephardic Jews hailed from Spain. The big expulsion was in 1492. Many Spanish Jews converted to Roman Catholicism (technically conversos, although the vernacular was marrano, which was Spanish for pig). This didn't always save them from the tender mercies of the Inquisition. Anyone of Spanish descent bearing that family name is quite likely to have Marrano antecedents. Most of the exiles fled to territories subject to the Ottomans. The ones who fled north gravitated to the Low Countries (some later ended up in England). They remembered their roots: at Rocroi (1643), a crushing defeat of the Spanish at the hands of the French, many of the wounded Spanish tercios were supposed to have been solicitously tended by Sephardim, they hadn't forgotten the lost glories of Al Andalus.


This reminded me of the episode on the ancestry of June Brown ('Dot' from Eastenders) in the current series of 'Who Do You Think You Are?'. They traced her ancestry back to Sephardic Jews expelled from North Africa by the Spanish. It was a fascinating insight into that period.


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 Post subject: Re: Caro-Khan Defence
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2011 5:11 pm 
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Simon Spivack wrote:
Gordon Cadden wrote:
... United Synagogue Cemetery in East Ham ...
This, coupled with the links to Prussia, make it close to a certainty that Caro was Ashkenazi.

Given that he died in 1920, was he one of the countless victims of the Spanish Influenza?


Possibly, though I'm not sure how quickly it died away after the peaks of the three main waves. See here for something fairly good, though looking more at the US waves. It varied from place to place.

http://ocp.hul.harvard.edu/contagion/influenza.html

"The third wave of the pandemic, between late 1918 and March 1919, spread unevenly in the US and in parts of Europe, but with similar intensity as the second."

Any outbreaks after that (if any) were probably small, so it looks unlikely.


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