Mrs. Lyrl Van Hyning, author of Key to the Mystery and editor/publisher of the 1950s antisemitic periodical Women’s Voice,
also published a leaflet accusing the Jews of hiding their secret
anti-Christianity in the Talmud. Directly or indirectly, Van Hyning and Nesta Webster base their claims on the Rev. IUstøin Bonaventura Pranaitøis (d. 1917?) and his Christianus in Talmude Iudaeorum : sive, Rabbinicae doctrinae de Christianis secreta
(The Secret Jewish Rabbinical Teachings Concerning Christians).
Petropoli : Officina typographica Academiae Caesareae Scientiarum, 1892.
[130 p ; 26 cm], and Wesley Swift’s 1939 translation entitled The Talmud Unmasked.
fabrications are of interest to students of Freemasonry primarily
because anti-Semites are often also anti-masons, and will use similar
methods of deception and falsehood in their attacks.
Antisemites such as Van Hyning, Nesta Webster, Benjamin H. Freedman and Wesley Swift
have claimed that the Talmud has been systematically hidden from
non-Jews, and that it is the supreme authority of Jewish law, philosophy
and ethics. In truth, it is available in most good public libraries and
most Jews regard it as simply one branch of Jewish theology, of limited
interest outside of rabbinical seminaries.
Talmud consists of two parts: the Mishnah, and its commentary, the
Gemara. The Mishnah, compiled and edited by Judah Hanasi about 200 C.E.,
was the first Jewish code of laws since the Torah. There are two
Gemaras, known as the Babylonian and the Palestinian. The former,
completed about 500 C.E., is the
record of the discussions of the Palestinian scholars. The Mishnah plus
the Babylonian Gemara is known as the Babylonian Talmud; the Mishnah
plus the Palestinian Gemara is known as the Palestinian Talmud. The two
Talmuds have always been printed separately, and never together.
Hyning’s leaflet was widely reprinted, excerpted, added to and quoted
from or referenced throughout the 1950s and 1960s by such publications
as The Cross and the Flag, Common Sense, and Thunderbolt.
In the early 1970s the Rev. Gerald L.K. Smith continued to distribute a
free tract quoting most of these lies. Rarely quoted today, these
fabrications continue to be the foundation of many claims that Judaism
following is Van Hyning’s list. Both Pranaitøis and Freedman claim a
longer list but the following list and refutations dispels the whole.
“The Talmud refers to Jesus Christ as the bastard son of a harlot (Kallah, 1b, 18b)”
Kallah, 1b, 18b. The quotation does not exist in this volume. This is a complete fabrication, and even the reference numbers are fabricated.
“Jesus is blasphemed as a fool (Schabbath, 104b), a conjurer (Toldoth
Jeshu), and idolater. (Sanhedrin 103a) and a seducer (Sanhedrin 107b).”
The correct spelling of this volume is Shabbath. It does not make an
evaluation of anyone, but rather reports a dialogue; “It was taught,
Rabbi Eliezer said to the Sages: But did not Ben Stada bring forth
witchcraft from Egypt by means of scratches (in the form of charms) upon
his flesh? He was a fool, answered they, and proof cannot be adduced
from fools.” The professional antisemites are relying on the theory that
the Talmudic scholars meant Jesus when they referred to Ben Stada. A
British scholar, R. Travers Herford, gives it as his opinion in
“Christianity in Talmud and Midrash” (p. 37) that Ben Stada means Jesus
of Nazareth. Further on, however, he says “…The Talmud has preserved
only a very vague and confused recollection of Jesus” (p. 83). And he
points out that some people argue “that there are in the Talmud two
persons called Jesus, neither of whom is the historical Jesus of
Nazareth” (p. 347).
Toldoth Jeshu is a book from the Middle Ages. It is not a part of the Talmud. [The Toledoth Yeshu is a polemic work written in about the 10th century. The Oxford Dictionary of Jewish Religion
says of it, “..the work is an expression of vulgar polemics written in
reaction to the no less vulgar attacks on Judaism in popular Christian
teaching and writing [of that time]”.]
Sanhedrin 103a. Van Hyning’s claim that it calls Jesus an idolator is a complete fabrication.
This is a distortion of the truth by Van Hyning based upon a legendary
story in this portion of the Talmud. As it is actually related, Jesus
and his teacher met a woman at a wayside inn; Jesus admired her extreme
beauty. For this the teacher severely admonished him and dismissed him
as a pupil. The rabbis in the Talmud sharply criticized the teacher for
his harshness and severity towards Jesus.
“The Talmud teaches that Jesus died like a beast and was buried in that
‘dirt heap’…where they throw the dead bodies of dogs and asses and
where the sons of Ssau (the Christians) and of Ismael (the Turks), also
Jesus and Mohammed, uncircumsized and unclean like dead dogs are buried
(Zobar, III, 282).
Zohar, III, 282. This is a cabalistic work that came into being during the Middle Ages [13th c.]. It is not a part of the Talmud. This entire “quotation” is a complete fabrication.
“One of the basic doctrines of the Talmud is that all non-Talmudists
rank as non-humans, that they are not like men, but beasts. (Kerithuth,
6b, p. 78)”.
Kerithuth, 6b, p. 78.
Even the numbering system is a fabrication. 6b means page 6, side 2.
Consequently, page 78 can have no relationship to 6b. This claim is
based upon a particular dialogue in which reference is made specifically
to heathens in a fashion comparable to that of many Christian preachers
who today still thunder away with the doctrine that only those who
accept Jesus Christ will be “saved.” Obviously no sane person with a
semblance of decency would condemn present-day Jews for the dialogue of
some individual religious philosophers 1700 years ago.
“A JEW WHO KILLS A CHRISTIAN COMMITS NO SIN, BUT OFFERS AN ACCEPTABLE
SACRIFICE TO GOD. ‘Even the best of the non-Jews should be killed.’
(Abhodah Zarah, 26b Tosepoth).”
Abhodah Zarah, 26b, Tosepoth.
Tosepoth is not a part of the Talmud. It is a collection of
commentaries on the Talmud. In a passage alluded to by Van Hyning,
Tosepoth quotes a Talmudic source as stating that the command of killing
all Canaanites was applicable only during the war against them.
“The following quotation from and about the Talmud should be of
interest to all Christians. Note: ‘GOY’ means non-Jews; ‘GOYIM’ is
plural for Goy.”
“Jehovah Himself studies the Talmud standing, he has such respect for that book (Tract Mechilla).”
No such book exists in the Talmud. Furthermore, the internal evidence
in the alleged quotation suggests crude fabrication. The Talmud is not
“that book”; it is a collection of volumes.
“Every goy who studies the Talmud and every Jew who helps him in it, ought to die. (Sanhedrin, 59a Abhodah Zarah 8-6).”
Abhodah Zarah 8-6.
Insofar as this volume is concerned the quotation is a complete
fabrication. Even the reference number is incorrect. It should read
“Abhodah Zarah 8a or 8b.” A number such as 8-6 can never exist in the
Talmud. Sanhedrin, 59a. Here is reported a dialogue between two Rabbis,
the first of whom does indeed fanatically advocate death for a heathen
who studies the Torah (the Pentateuch, not the Talmud), The second Rabbi
effectively demolishes his colleague’s argument by pointing out that
the heathen who studies the Torah succeeds in elevating himself to the
status of a High Priest.
“To communicate anything to a goy about our religious relations would
be equal to the killing of all Jews, for if the goyim knew what we teach
about them they would kill us openly. (Libbre David 37).”
Libbre David 37. This is a complete fabrication. No such book exists in the Talmud or in the entire Jewish literature.
“A Jew should and must make a false oath when the goyim asks if our
books contain anything against them. (Szaaloth-Utszabot, The Book of
Jore Dia 17).”
The Book of Jore Dia 17. No such statement appears, This is a complete fabrication. Szaaloth-Utszabot, The Book of Jore Dia 17. There is no such book in the Talmud. These two words are part of the title of some 1500 books, but by themselves they mean only “responses.”
“The Jews are human beings, but the nations of the world are not human beings but beasts. (Baba Mecia 114-6).”
Baba Mecia 114-6. This quotation is a complete fabrication. Even the numbering is incorrect. There can be no 114-6; it has to be 114a or 114b.
“When the Messiah comes every Jew will have 2800 slaves. (Simeon Haddarsen, fol. 56D).”
Simeon Haddarsen, fol. 56D.
There is no such book in the Talmud. It is actually the name of a 10th
century Bible commentator. The “fol. 56D” is an invention.
“Jehovah created the non-Jew in human form so that the Jew would not
have to be served by beasts. The non-Jew is consequently an animal in
human form, and condemned to serve the Jew day and night. (Midrash
Midrash Talpioth, 225-L.
This is not a volume of the Talmud. It is something composed by a
Turkish Jew in the 18th century. His name was Elijah ben Solomom
“As soon as the King Messiah will declare himself, He will destroy Rome
and make a wilderness of it. Thorns and weeds will grow in the Pope’s
palace. Then he will start a merciless war on non-Jews and will
overpower them. He will slay them in masses, kill their kings and lay
waste the whole Roman land. He will say to the Jews: ‘I am the King
Messiah for whom you have been waiting. Take the silver and the gold
from the goyim.’ (Josiah 60, Rabbi Abarbanel to Daniel 7, 13).”
Josiah 60. This is not a volume from the Talmud. There is no book of that title in existence.
“A Jew may do to a non-Jewess what he can do. He may treat her as he
treats a piece of meat. (Nadarine, 20, B; Schulchan Aruch, Choszen
The actual quotation is: “The Rabbis say: That whatever a man wants to
do with his wife he may do; just as he can prepare meat to suit his
fancy.” This concept of male superiority of 1700 years ago bears no
relationship to the philosophy and conduct of present-day Jewry.
To represent this as the teachings of Judaism in the twentieth century
is to perpetuate a palpable fraud. Van Hyning perpetrated the additional
fraud of twisting it into a Jew vs. Gentile problem.
“A Jew may rob a goy–that is, he may cheat him in a bill, if unlikely
to be perceived by him. (Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat 348).”
Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat 348.
This is not a part of the Talmud. It is actually a part of a collection
of Biblical commentaries in the sixteenth century. The actual text in
this volume says that it is forbidden to steal even a small item from a Jew or non-Jew, from children or from adults.
One of the commentators remarks that in dealing with an idolator it
would be permissible to use artifice or stratagem to effect repayment of a loan.
He then adds that others say that to do it intentionally is forbidden,
but if the idolator makes a mistake in one’s favor, it is proper to
accept the advantage that accrues. However it is pointed out that the
famous Rabbi Maimonedes is vigorously opposed to such procedures.
“All property of other nations belongs to the Jewish nation, which
consequently is entitled to seize upon it without scruples. An orthodox
Jew is not bound to observe principles of morality towards people of
other tribes. He may act contrary to morality, if profitable to himself
or to Jews in general. (Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat 348).”
Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat 348. This is a complete fabrication.
“On the house of the goy one looks as on the fold of cattle. (Tosefta, Erubin VIII, I).”
Tosefta, Erubin VIII, I. This is a complete fabrication. Tosefta is not part of the Talmud.
“How to interpret the word ‘robbery’. A goy is forbidden to steal, rob
or take women slaves, etc., from a goy or Jew. But the Jew is NOT
forbidden to do all this to a goy. (Tosefta, Abhodah Zarah VIII, 5).”
Tosefta, Abhodah Zarah VIII, 5. This is a complete fabrication. Tosefta is not part of the Talmud.
“All vows, oaths, promises, engagements, and swearing, which, beginning
this very day of reconciliation, we intend to vow, promise, swear, and
bind ourselves to fulfill, we repent of beforehand; let them be
illegalized, acquitted, annihilated, abolished, valueless, unimportant.
Our vows shall be no vows, and our oaths no oaths at all. (Schulchan
Aruch, Edit. 1, 136).”
Schulchan Aruch, Edit. 1, 136.
This is not from the Talmud. This is actually a garbled version of the
Kon Nidre prayer. The reference to “Edit. 1, 136″ is completely
meaningless. [The Kon Nidre prayer, from the 8th century CE,
did not release anyone from a judicial oath or obligation between
people. It was intended to release a Jew from a vow made to God,
specifically those made under duress to accept another faith.]
“At the time of the Cholhamoed the transaction of any kind of business
is forbidden. But it is permitted to cheat a goy, because cheating of
goyim at any time pleases the Lord. (Schulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 539).”
Schulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 539. This is a complete fabrication.
“If a Jew be called upon to explain any part of the rabbinic books, he
ought to give only a false explanation. Who ever will violate this order
shall be put to death. (Libbre David 37).”
Libbre David 37. There is no such book, as previously noted.
Abhodah Zarah (22a): Christians have intercourse with animals.
This fabrication is not in the text.
Sanhedrin 67a: Jesus referred to as the son of Pandira, a soldier. Mother a prostitute.
According to a footnote in the Talmud, this passage refers to a Jewish
revolutionary named Ben Stada or Ben Padira who came from Egypt, claimed
to be a prophet, led his followers to Mount Zion, and was executed by
the Romans, about 100 years after the time of Jesus. The footnote also
says that Christians have long misunderstood this passage as a reference
to Jesus and tried to censor it or condemn the Jews because of it. Note
the legend put about by Celsus, the Greek philosopher, who argued with
Justin martyr in the 2nd century, and who repeated a tale that Jesus was
the son of a Roman centurion called Panthera.
Kelhubath (11a-11b): “When a grown-up man has had intercourse with a
little girl… It means this: When a grown up man has intercourse with a
little girl it is nothing, for when the girl is less than this [see
footnote] three years old it is as if one puts the finger into the eye
[again see footnote] tears come to the eye again and again, so does
virginity come back to the little girl three years old.”
This is probably the most insidious quote in the whole list. The words
are correctly quoted but completely out of context. All the words after
[see footnote] actually appear in the footnote, and are therefore not
part of the Talmud itself. This passage is a discussion of the penalties
and consequences of adult-child sexual relations. The point being made
is that if a man has sexual relations with a little girl, that is to be
punished less harshly than if it is with an older child or an adult
woman. Importantly, when she grows up, the child is to regarded as still
having her virginity for legal and marriage purposes. She is not to
suffer. In modern times it is quite shocking to think that the fine or
reparation for raping an infant should be less than that for raping or
seducing an older child, but that is the relative judgement that some of
the rabbis made, and which is recorded in the Talmud. The following
paragraphs continue to discuss this issue, and there does not seem to be
a strong consensus on the issue. The important thing, though, is that
whilst from a modern standpoint we (whether Christian, Jew or atheist)
might deplore the medical and psychological ignorance which seems to
inform this decision, it must be stressed that the Talmud in no sense
condones such behaviour. The discussion is about how it should be