The Jews of Europe found themselves in the second half of the nineteenth century tossed on the horns of a terrible dilemma. If they pursued the gains of emancipation, they must assimilate; and the more they did so, the more their Judaism would have to be reformed, the more dilute it would become, the less Jewish they would finally turn out to be. If, on the other hand, they restricted their pursuit of the gains of emancipation and hence, the less they assimilated and lost thereby their Jewishness, the more they would stand out as strangers in a society bent on not granting them its identity. On either count, they stood to lose. But which loss was greater? Jewishness, or freedom, and often, life?