The Jewish Eye
The Maharam Schick - The Quintessential Talmid
There were two
things that distinguished Rav Moshe Schick, otherwise known as the
Maharam Schick. One was his sheer desire to overcome to overcome his
weak body and mind and the other being his attachment to his great
Rebbe the Chasam Sofer.
The Maharam Schick was born in the year
1807 in the Bresova in Slovakia. He descended from the Tosfos Yom Tov
but was not known to inherit any great mental skills from his
illustrious ancestor. He childhood years were a picture of will
power. While others were out playing, he sat bent over his gemara and
even depriving himself of sleep, even though, as he told over to his
son-in-law, he had great difficulty comprehending what he was taught.
It was thanks to this extraordinary effort that, in his own words, he
was to zocheh to have the fountains of wisdom opened to him. "Hashem
simply pitied my incredible toil."
When he was 11 years old he
went to learn in his uncle Rav Yitzchok Frenkel's yeshiva. At age 14
he entered Pressburg the prestigious yeshiva of the Chasam Sofer. When
the Chasam Sofer asked a question that stumped all the older talmidim,
the scrawny little 14 year old came up with an impressive answer. This
impressed the Chasam Sofer, who then invited him to eat the Motza'ei
Yom Kippur seudah at his table. This was the first of many meals as
for the next years while in Pressburg Yeshiva, he ate at his Rebbi's
table on Shabbos and Yom Tov. The Chasam Sofer affectionately referred
to his as his "Seforim Shrank" since all the wisdom of torah was to be
found in him.
When the town of Yeregin, near Pressburg, asked the
Chasam Sofer for a recommendation for a Rov, the Chasam Sofer told them
if they took the young Moshe Schick they will not regret it and will be
very content with their choice for many years. He remained Rov in
Yeregin for 20 years and started a successful Yeshiva. From there he
moved to the town of Chust, where his Yeshiva thrived with over 800
talmidim. He also developed a warm relationship with the Yeitav Lev
the grandson of the Yismach Moshe.
Before his death the Maharam
Schick said that he did not miss a single word from the torah that he
learned from his Rebbi, the Chasam Sofer. One time when the Maharam
Schick was still in Yeregin, the Chasam Sofer walked in during a shiur
he was giving. He immediately stopped and stood up, not wanting to say
the Shiur in his rebbi's presence. The Chasam Sofer commanded him to
continue. He then said over only Chidushim that he heard from his
rebbi. After the shiur ended the Chasam Sofer said, believe me, many
of these Chidushim I myself have already forgotten. It was not for nothing that it was said MiMoshe (Sofer) Ad Moshe (Schick) Lo Kam K'Moshe.
against the Maskilim and published a number of seforim including on
Shailos U'Tshuvos, Taryag Mitzvos, Shas, Chumash, Hagada Shel Pesach,
Pirkei Avos, and Drashos. He was also noted for his protest against the law requiring each family to take on an official family name. He chose the name Schick, an acronym for Shem Yisroel Kadosh, the Jewish name is holy. He was niftar at the age of 72 on Rosh
Chodesh Shevat 5639/1879. Yehi Zichro Boruch.
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