Rabbi Judah Alkalai is born in Sarajevo in 1798. Raised and receiving his education in Jerusalem, he becomes the rabbi of Semlin, a town on the outskirts of Belgrade in 1825. Alkalai advocates for the use of Hebrew as the language of the Jewish people, calling for a return to the Land of Israel though fundraising and settlement. Many of his ideas would later be advocated by Zionist leaders like Theodor Herzl and others such as the creation of a fund to purchase land in Israel and an assembly to oversee national activities. In 1871, after spending time traveling throughout Europe trying to promote his ideas, Alkalai settles in Jerusalem at the age of 73, dying in 1878.
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