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Czech Leyends

The Golem

Prague is one of the great cities of Europe and much of its architecture suggests social and political shifts that occurred in the Czech capital. Why not, the legends are part of popular culture and somehow stain the espítitu of a city rich in traditions. One revolves around the legend of the Golem, a figure that is part of medieval folklore and Jewish mythology.

The legend of the Golem appears related to Rabbi Jehuda Löw ben Becadel, rabbi in the Jewish ghetto of medieval Prague and emblematic figure of the community who lived between 1512 and 1609. Prague was the meeting place of different migration streams of Jews from eastern and southern Europe and Russia. It was a thriving community and cultured. Rabbi Low was the epitome of this cultural mix, a student of Kabbalah and Jewish doctrine, very interested in the traditions, stories and legends of his people.

Legend has it that Rabbi Low by studying the scriptures through the cabal was able to decipher the word that the Lord used to give the gift of life. He made then with mud from the Vltava River and under one of its bridges, a small clay man into her mouth and a paper with the written word, clay doll grew into a big man and encouraged its members life . But Low was not as God, gave this man a soul, was a puppet animated free will. It was characterized by extraordinary strength and obeyed throughout the Rabbi Low. But the rabbi should withdraw the paper before nightfall or the Golem would escape their control.
One Saturday forgot to remove the paper before the appointed time and the creature became a destructive force. When they managed to remove the paper, the Golem had destroyed the Jewish ghetto altogether. Low hid then man of clay at a secret location and destroyed the paper, and predicted that when the Jewish people is in trouble appear illuminated by a rabbi God would decipher the magic word, a rabbi would be much wiser than himself , then the Golem would come and save his people from their troubles.

Ben Jehuda Low Becadel was a real historical character and certainly the Jewish ghetto suffered destruction at the time, but has never found any evidence that anything like the Golem exist.

During the Second World War there were voices that said that the Golem would appear to save the Jewish people, in a direct or indirect, as a destructive force to annihilate the enemies. After the war, these same people wondered why the Golem had not come to save them.

In 1914 Gustav Meyrink's novel The Golem wrote, inspired by the Czech legend, and it appears based on the legendary German film expressionism classic The Golem, the filmmaker Paul Wegener.

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