golem(redirected from Golem of Prague)
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golem(gō`ləm) [Heb.,=an undeveloped lump], in medieval Jewish legend, an automatonlike servant made of clay and given life by means of a charm, or shem [Heb.,=name, or the name of God]. Golems were attributed in Jewish legend to several rabbis in different European countries. The most famous legend centered around Rabbi Löw, of 16th-century Prague. After molding the golem and endowing it with life, Rabbi Löw was forced to destroy the clay creature after it ran amok.
See J. Trachtenberg, Jewish Magic and Superstition (1939, repr. 1961); M. Idel, Golem (1989).
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automaton homunculus performs duties not permissible for Jews. [Jew. Legend: Jobes, 674]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.