1933 Maccabiah Games

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1st Winter Maccabiah
Host city Zakopane, Poland[1]
Nations participating 8[1]
Athletes participating 250[1]
Opening ceremony February 2
Closing ceremony February 5
Main venue Wielka Krokiew, Zakopane
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The 1st Winter Maccabiah (Hebrew: מכביית החורף הראשונה‎‎; Polish: Pierwsza zimowa Makabiada) was held in Zakopane,[2] Poland from February 2 to 5, 1933.[1] Coincidentally, the opening ceremony took place two days after Adolf Hitler was appointed chancellor (30 January 1933).


Following the successful games of the 1st Maccabiah in 1932, there was a growing interest in winter sports among the European nations. The Maccabi federation of Poland was in charge of organizing the Winter Maccabiah.[3] In the 1930s, that federation was strongest pillar of the Maccabi World Union, consisting of 30,000 Jewish athletes members. The games were met with great opposition;[4] the Gazeta Warszawska newspaper encouraged Polish youth to intervene during the games to prevent the "Jewification of Polish winter sports venues".[5]

Opening ceremony[edit]

The opening ceremony for the games took place at the Stadium in Zakopane on February 2, 1933.[1] Lord Melchett, honorary president of the World Maccabi Organization, did not attend the ceremony; instead he sent his blessing and an apology - a large statue depicting the persecution of Jews resistance to anti-semitism through the ages[1]

Participating communities[edit]

Jewish athletes from 8 nations participated; most notably, no athletes from Eretz Yisrael took part in the games. The number in parentheses indicates the number of athletes in the delegation.[1]

Games highlights[edit]

Poland received the most medals in the first winter Maccabiah;[3] Some of the wins include I. Wahrenhaupt (Men's 18 km cross-country skiing), Szwarcbard (Women's 8 km cross-country skiing), M. Enker (Male Luge), R. Enker (Women Luge), G. Bergler (figure skating), H. Mückenbrun (Downhill), and Women's 3×5 kilometer relay.[3]

The 1st Winter Maccabiah also hosted the first international Maccabiah hockey tournament.


Nation Points
Poland Poland 131
Czechoslovakia Czechoslovakia 32
Austria Austria 29
Romania Romania 8


  1. ^ a b c d e f g נישטו לורד מלצ'ט! [Nicht Lord Melchett!] (in Yiddish). 1933. Retrieved 22 February 2014. 
  2. ^ Anna Pollak-Fass (May 8, 2006). "JEWISH LIFE IN THE PODHALE DISTRICT". Retrieved 23 February 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c Rokicki, Jarosław (November 24, 2008). "Makabiady" (in Polish). Rzeczpospolita. Retrieved 22 February 2014. 
  4. ^ "Maccabi Movement". YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. 2010. Retrieved 22 February 2014. 
  5. ^ Mendelsohn, Ezra (March 31, 2009). Jews and the Sporting Life : Studies in Contemporary Jewry XXIII. Oxford University Press. p. 26. ISBN 978-0195382914. 
  6. ^ Nowy Dziennik. 1933, nr 39