Chernobyl (Hasidic dynasty)

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Chernobyl (Yiddish: טשערנאָביל‎) is a Hasidic dynasty that was founded by Grand Rabbi Menachem Nachum Twersky, known by the name of his work as the Meor Einayim. The dynasty is named after the northern Ukrainian town of Chernobyl, where Rabbi Nachum served as the maggid (lit. [communal] preacher). The attribution of Chernobyl Hasidism continued from the second generation of Hasidic Judaism to the present day. Chernobyl is considered one of the famous courtyards of the Hasidic movement. The lineage has existed since its establishment and to this day in a row, although not always with the name Chernobyl. Today there are several rebbes named Chernobyl. The central courtyard is in Bnei Brak, headed by Rabbi Menachem Nachum Twersky.

The name "Chernobyl dynasty" is also used as a general term for the sects of the descendants of Rabbi Mordechai of Chernobyl; the dynastys of Chernobyl, Skver, Trisk, Rachmastrivka, Hornosteipel, and in the past even the dynastys of Machnovka (today this court practices Belz customary), Makarov and Shpikov and the dynastys that branched out of these dynastys.

Lineage of the Chernobyl rebbes[edit]

  • Rabbi Menachem Nachum of Chernobyl, founder of the dynasty, was a disciple of the Baal Shem Tov (the founder of the Hasidic movement) and of the Maggid of Mezritch, and author of the books Me'or Einayim and Yesamach Lev (lit. The light of the eyes makes the heart happy[1]). His father was Rabbi Zvi Hirsch son of Rabbi Nachum Gaon of Narinsk. He served as a Maggid Meisharim in the communities of Narynsk, Pogrebishti and Chernobyl, and was poor most of his life. He passed away on the 11th of Cheshvan 1798.
  • Rabbi Mordechai Twersky of Chernobyl, known as the Maggid of Chernobyl, was the son of Rabbi Menachem Nachum and Sarah. He was married to the daughter of Rabbi Aharon the Great of Karlin and a second time to Feiga, the daughter of Rabbi Dovid Leikas. He used to turn around in the towns and receive Maggidus letters from many of them. Unlike his father, he was rich and traveled in a horse-drawn carriage. His teachings were gathered in the book Likutei Torah. He died on May 24, 1837, and was buried in Ignatowka, near Kiev, and left eight sons and three daughters.
  • Rabbi Aharon Twersky of Chernobyl, the son of Rabbi Mordechai and Chaya Sara. He was born in 1857, and his name was given to him after his grandfather, Rabbi Aharon the Great of Karlin, and in his youth his father forced him to serve as rebbe, and since then a he traveled a lot through the surrounding cities. Upon the death of his father, he took his place in the leadership of his community and the Maggiding of Chernobyl and other communities. He was the president of the charity fund Kupath Rabbi Meir Baal Haness[dubious ] of Kollel Volhyn [HE], and was active in strengthening the settling the land. He passed away on 8 Kislev 5632, leaving behind six children. His sons were born from his second wife.

Chernobyl Hasidism as a movement survived the ravages of the Holocaust, although many of its members perished. There are many scions of the Chernobyl dynasty alive today. Generally, at present, anyone with the last name Twersky (or Twerski) is likely to be a descendant of the Chernobyl dynasty.

The Chernobyl dynasty[edit]

The founder of the Chernobyl dynasty was Rebbe (Menachem) Nochum, the Meor Einayim, a disciple of Rabbi Yisroel ben Eliezer, the Baal Shem Tov, who established the Hasidic movement. He was also a disciple of the Maggid of Mezritch:

  • Grand Rabbi Menachem Nochum Twersky of Chernobyl (1730–1797) – author of Meor Einayim, disciple of the Baal Shem Tov
    • Grand Rabbi Mordechai Twersky (1770–1837) – the Chernobyler Maggid, son of the Meor Einayim – had eight sons who each became a rebbe and founded their own dynasty.
      • Grand Rabbi Aaron Twersky of Chernobyl (1784–1871), eldest son of Rebbe Mordechai
        • Grand Rabbi Yeshaya Meshulom Zishe Twersky of Chernobyl (1814–1881), son of Rebbe Aaron
          • Grand Rabbi Shlomo BenZion Twersky of Chernobyl (1870–1939), son of Rebbe Yeshayo Meshulom Zishe
        • Grand Rabbi Boruch Osher Twersky of Chernobyl (d. 1905), son of Rebbe Aaron
          • Grand Rabbi Shlomo Shmuel Twersky of Chernobyl-Brooklyn (d.1936), son of Rebbe Boruch Osher and son-in-law of Rebbe Yeshaya Meshulom Zishe
            • Grand Rabbi Yaakov Yisroel Twersky, Chernobyler Rebbe of Boro Park (1902–1983), son of Rebbe Shlomo Shmuel – the last Chernobyler Rebbe who was born in Chernobyl
              • Rabbi Shlomo Twersky (d. 2017), son of Grand Rabbi Yaakov Yisroel Twersky, Rabbi of Kehal Chasidy Chernobel in Lawrence, New York;
                • Rabbi Zvi Twersky – Menahel Ruchani at Yeshivas Toras Chaim in Romema, Jerusalem,[2] son of Rabbi Shlomo Twersky of Lawrence, NY;
        • Grand Rabbi Menachem Nochum Twerski of Loiev, son of Rebbe Aaron
          • Grand Rabbi Mordechai Twerski of Loiev (1840–1905), son of Rebbe Menachem Nochum
            • Grand Rabbi Avrohom Yehoshua Heshl Twerski of Loiev-Tshudnov (1860–1914), son of Rebbe Mordechai of Loiev
            • Grand Rabbi Boruch Bentsion Twerski of Loiev-Uman (1875–1945), son of Rebbe Mordechai of Loiev
                • Rabbi Chaim Mordechai Twersky (1921-2013), Chernobyler Rav of Boro Park and Rabbi of Maimonides Hospital Brooklyn New York, grandson of Rabbi Boruch Bentsion of Loiev-Uman
                  • Rabbi Baruch Benzion Twersky, Chernobyler Rav of Monsey, son of Rabbi Chaim Mordechai of Boro Park
      • Grand Rabbi Yaakov Yisroel Twersky of Cherkas, (1794–1876) – son of the Maggid of Chernobyl
        • Rebbe Mordechai Dov Twerski of Hornosteipel (1839–1903), author of "Emek Sheilah" and four other soforim– grandson of the Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel Twerski and great-great-grandson of Rebbe Zishe of Anipoli.
          • Rebbe Chaim Moshe Tzvi Twerski of Hornosteipel-Rachmastrivka (1866–1933) - son of the Rebbe Mordechai Dov. Son in law of Rebbe Nuchum of [_(Hasidic_dynasty)[Rachmastrivka]] of the Chernobal dynasty
          • Rebbe Ben Tzion Yehuda Leib Twerski of Hornosteipel-USA (1867–1951) – son of Rebbe Mordechai Dov.
            • Rabbi Chaim Aharon Twerski – son of Rebbe Ben Tzion Yehuda Leib - son-in-law of Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel Dovid Hager of Strozhnits
            • Rabbi Menachem Nuchim Twerski son of Rebbe Ben Tzion Yehuda Leib (d. 19 Kislev)– son of Rebbe Ben Tzion Yehuda Leib - son-in-law of Rebbe Yosef Zvi Kalish of Skernovitz-Bnei Braq [Vorka Hasidic Dynasty]was a very knowledgeable in torah and chassidus. Young and old would flock to his shul in Tel-Aviv and hear words of Torah and stories of tzadddikim. He wrote a sefer called "Medor L'dor" documenting his pedigree charts, Yichus book and the biography of his ancestors.
            • Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel Twerski of Hornosteipel-Milwaukee (1900–1973) - son and successor of Rebbe Ben Tzion Yehuda Leib - son-in-law of Rebbe Benzion Halberstam of Bobov
              • Rebbe Ben Tzion Chaim Shloime Meshulam Zusia Twerski of Hornosteipel-Denver (1923–1981) - son of Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel of Milwaukee
                • Rebbe Mordechai Dov Ber Twerski of Hornosteipel-Denver (b. 1949), in Flatbush, Brooklyn - only son of Rebbe Shloime of Denver
                • Rebbe Shalom Shachna Friedman Rov of Hornosteipel-Jerusalem - son-in-law of Rebbe Shloime of Denver
              • Rebbe Mordechai Dov Ber Twerski (1924–1998), son of Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel of Milwaukee
              • Rabbi Dr. Abraham J. Twerski, M.D., son of Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel of Milwaukee
              • Rebbe Yechiel Michel Twerski of Hornosteipel-Milwaukee (b. 1939) - son of Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel of Milwaukee
              • Rabbi Aaron Twerski, son of Rebbe Yaakov Yisroel of Milwaukee
      • Grand Rabbi Yitzhak Twersky of Skver, (1812–1885) son of Rebbe Mordechai; son-in-law of Rabbi Tzvi Hirsh of Skver, a patrilineal descendant of the Baal Shem Tov;
        • Grand Rabbi David (Duvidl) Twersky of Skver (1848–1919) — son of Rebbe Itzikl.
          • Grand Rabbi Mordechai Twersky of Skver (1868–1919) — son of Rebbe Duvidl.
            • Grand Rabbi Yitzchak Twersky of Skver (1888–1941) — arrived in America in 1923, son of Rabbi Mordechai.
              • Grand Rabbi David Twersky of Skver-Boro Park (1922–2001) — son of Rabbi Yitzchak.
                • Grand Rabbi Yechiel Michl Twersky — present Skverer Rebbe of Boro Park, son of Rabbi David.
          • Grand Rabbi Shlomo Twersky of Skver (1870–1921) — son of Rebbe Duvidl.
              • Grand Rabbi Eluzar Twersky of Faltishan-Skver (1893–1976) — Rebbe of Faltishan (Fălticeni, Romania); son of Rabbi Shlomo; arrived in America in 1947.
                • Grand Rabbi Yisrael Avraham Stein of Faltishan (1915–1989) — Rabbi of Faltishan, and Faltishaner Rebbe in Brooklyn; son-in-law of Rabbi Elazar; arrived in America in 1946.
                  • Grand Rabbi Mordechai Stein of Faltishan — present Faltishaner Rabbe; son of Rabbi Yisrael Avraham.
                • Rabbi Avrom Twersky of Faltishan (ca. 1920-1985) — Rebbe of Faltishan Borough Park; son of Rabbi Eluzer.
                  • Grand Rabbi Shulem Meir Twersky — Present Faltishan Borough Park Rebbe; son of Rabbi Avrom.
            • Grand Rabbi Yaakov Yosef Twerski of Skver (1899–1968) — Rebbe of New Square; son of Rabbi Duvidl.
              • Grand Rabbi Duvid Twersky of Skver — present Rebbe of New Square and Grand Rabbi of the Skverer Hasidim worldwide; son of Rebbe Yaakov Yosef.
      • Grand Rabbi Avrohom Twersky of Trisk, son of Rebbe Mordechai, author of Mogen Avrohom (d. 1889)
      • Grand Rabbi David Twersky of Tolna, son of Rebbe Mordechai
      • Grand Rabbi Yochanan Twersky of Rachmastrivka, son of Rebbe Mordechai

Famous scions[edit]

Among the famous scions of the Chernobyl dynasty are:


  1. ^ Book of Proverbs 15:30
  2. ^ "Staff". Yeshiva Toras Chaim. Retrieved 29 May 2018.


  • Yitschak Alfasi (2006). תורת החסידות [Torat haChasidut] (in Hebrew). Jerusalem: Mosad Harav Kook. pp. 297–373.

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