Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World

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Bengio, Mordechai
(407 words)

Mordechai Bengio, the son of Joseph Bengio, was born in 1825 and was elected chief rabbi of Tangier at the age of twenty-eight in 1853, succeeding his grandfather, Moses, who died of the plague. Serving as chief rabbi until his own death in 1917, he reformed the community governing council, the Junta (Heb. maʿamad ) and introduced a measure of democracy on nonreligious issues. He also supported the opening of communal schools. He was considered a great rabbinic authority.

Bengio organized the first communal election of Junta members, held on May 9, 1853, but the elected Junta…

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Mitchell Serels, “Bengio, Mordechai”, in: Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Executive Editor Norman A. Stillman. Consulted online on 06 December 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1878-9781_ejiw_SIM_0003880>
First published online: 2010

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