Caricature of a Jewish man in a top hat with exaggerated facial features

Language of Description
Alt. Identifiers
  • 2016.184.6
1 Jan 1882 - 31 Dec 1882
Level of Description
  • English
EHRI Partner

Extent and Medium

overall: Height: 4.375 inches (11.113 cm) | Width: 4.000 inches (10.16 cm)


Biographical History

The Katz Ehrenthal Collection is a collection of more than 900 objects depicting Jews and antisemitic and anti-Jewish propaganda from the medieval to the modern era, in Europe, Russia, and the United States. The collection was amassed by Peter Ehrenthal, a Romanian Holocaust survivor, to document the pervasive history of anti-Jewish hatred in Western art, politics and popular culture. It includes crude folk art as well as pieces created by Europe's finest craftsmen, prints and periodical illustrations, posters, paintings, decorative art, and toys and everyday household items decorated with depictions of stereotypical Jewish figures.

Archival History

The card was donated to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2016 by the Katz Family.


United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of the Katz Family

Funding Note: The cataloging of this artifact has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.

Scope and Content

Small, color print with a crudely exaggerated caricature of a Jewish schnorrer. The print may be a trade card, an illustrated advertising card distributed by businesses to promote their goods or services. The cards often featured colorful and vivid images designed to attract consumer’s attention. However, some images played on popular prejudices and stereotypes of Native Americans, Near and Far Eastern cultures, and Jewish minorities. A widely held antisemitic stereotype of the time was the schnorrer, a Judeo-German term for a Jewish beggar. During the Chmielnicki pogroms in Poland (1648-57), hundreds of Jewish communities were destroyed and thousands of Jews fled west after the destruction of their homes and way of life. Afterward, the influx of destitute Jewish refugees in central Europe helped create the archetype of the Jewish beggar, or schnorrer. Unlike a beggar or panhandler who could be distinguished by their ragged outward appearance, a stereotypical schnorrer dressed respectably. Schnorrers were characterized as impudent, with an air of entitlement to disguise their true needs from charitable individuals. They were evasive about why they needed assistance, and were not satisfied with small favors. Typical reasons given for a schnorrer’s collection included recovering from the destruction of their home, or funding the dowry for their daughter or another relative. Schnorrers were said to invert the act of charity by asking for handouts. They give the affluent members of society a chance to do a good deed, which complies with the Jewish communal practice of providing aid to those less well off in the community. This act of kindness meant the charitable patron should be thankful to the schnorrer for providing the opportunity. This print is one of the 900 items in the Katz Ehrenthal Collection of antisemitic artifacts and visual materials.

Conditions Governing Access

No restrictions on access

Conditions Governing Reproduction

No restrictions on use

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Color trade card on thick, lightly textured, off-white paper, depicting a caricature of a short man in left-facing profile. He is portrayed with crudely exaggerated, stereotypically Jewish features: a huge, curved, red- tipped nose; fleshy, red lips; and puffy red cheeks. He also has dark, curly sideburns and a pointed, curly beard. He is wearing a shiny, black, top hat, an ill-fitting gray morning coat and mismatched gray pants, and worn, unpolished boots. He stands with his right arm bent upward at the elbow, and his hand bent back with the palm up. The background is gold-colored with a metallic luster, and the lower ground is a light brown resembling a dirt path. English text is printed in the lower left corner in black ink. There is a narrow off-white margin around the image. The back is lightly discolored throughout, and a piece of clear tape is adhered to the top center.

back, top left corner, handwritten, pencil : RB back, bottom left corner, handwritten, pencil : J



This description is derived directly from structured data provided to EHRI by a partner institution. This collection holding institution considers this description as an accurate reflection of the archival holdings to which it refers at the moment of data transfer.