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“We dreamed of nothing but Enlightenment” – Moses Mendelssohn

Accompanying Publication to the Homonymous Exhibition

For his many admirers throughout Europe, the phrase “the Jew from Berlin” could only refer to the philosopher Moses Mendelssohn (1729–1786). This volume recounts the impact and the career of the self-made, discrimination-defying intellectual in Frederick the Great’s Prussia. Many of his life’s major themes remain present in our own 21st-century reality: the battle between fake news and the pursuit of truth, following one’s brain or one’s guts, civil rights, ideas about humanity, and conflicts over identity.

The rich spectrum of portraits of Mendelssohn made during his lifetime, assembled for the very first time here, illustrates his enduring significance and serves as a gallery of icons of a pioneering emancipator and the Jewish figure most frequently depicted before Albert Einstein.


  • „Wir träumten von nichts als Aufklärung“ – Moses Mendelssohn (“We dreamed of nothing but Enlightenment” – Moses Mendelssohn)
    248 pages
    166 color plates and 13 black-and-white plates
    Released on 14 April 2022 by Wienand Verlag

    ISBN 978-3-86832-690-1
    Bilingual in German and English

  • Edited by

    Inka Bertz and Dr. Thomas Lackmann on behalf of the Mendelssohn-Gesellschaft

  • With contributions by

    Inka Bertz and Dr. Thomas Lackmann

  • Price

    29,80 €
    Available at the museum and wherever books are sold

Book cover of the Mendelssohn catalog with portrait of a man looking kindly at the viewer.

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Catalogs: Exhibition Publications (47)