Describe Moshie, the beadle.

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lsumner | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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Moshe the Beadle is one of the first characters introduced in the book of Night. He is Eliezer Wiesel's tutor in religious discussions. The community accepts him as a "physically awkward." Although he is less than others, the community is fond of him:

He is poor, but the community is fond of him and does not resent the generosity he needs.

Moshe the Beadle is like an uncle or tutor to Elie Wiesel. He spends hours at a time time with him discussing "revelations and mysteries of the caballa."

Moshe learns of the horrible truths of the Jews who were being deported. As an Jewish immigrant in Sighet, he was among the first to be deported. He escaped and came back. Moshe tried to share the massacre of those deported. Sadly enough, no one believes him. The community dismisses his report. They consider him a madman:

The community dismisses him as a madman. They dismiss him because if he is to be believed, then they too will be as poor as he is.

Truly, no one wants to believe the horrors associated with Moshe the Beadle's report. They keep telling themselves the war will soon be over and life will return to normal. When they finally believe Moshe, it is too late for many Jews. Moshe did try to prepare them:

'I wanted to come back to Sighet to tell you the story of my death. So that you could prepare yourselves while there was still time. To live? I don't attach any importance to my life any more. I'm alone. No, I wanted to come back, and to warn you. And see how it is, no one will listen to me....' (Chapter 1)

Indeed, Moshe did try and warn them. No one believed him. "Then he flees."


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