20.04.

1909: Founding of Tel Aviv – The Financial Center of Modern Israel

1909: Founding of Tel Aviv – The Financial Center of Modern Israel
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 20 April 1909
  • The area of present-day Israel was a part of the Ottoman Empire during the founding of Tel Aviv. Tel Aviv was symbolically founded by 66 Jewish families who divided the land among themselves.

Tel Aviv, one of the largest cities in present-day Israel, was founded on this day in 1909. It was founded by Jewish settlers in the area not far from the old port city of Jaffa. Unlike Jaffa, which had a large Arab population, Jews were the majority in Tel Aviv.

A novel of Theodor Herzl, the founder of modern political Zionism, influenced the choice of the city`s name. Namely, Herzl lived and worked in Vienna, and “Altneuland” was the title of his novel in German language. The title was also translated into the Hebrew language (“Tel Aviv”).

Literally speaking, the term “tel” means “hill formed by ancient accumulation of previous settlements”, and “aviv” means “source” (literally, “Tel Aviv” blends old and new). There was also a proposal to name the city after Theodor Herzl. If that proposal had been accepted, the city would have become “Herzliya” (later, the city of Herzliya was truly established north of Tel Aviv).

The area of present-day Israel was a part of the Ottoman Empire during the founding of Tel Aviv. Tel Aviv was symbolically founded by 66 Jewish families who divided the land among themselves. Tel Aviv is the financial center of modern Israel. The only Israeli Stock Exchange is located there, and Tel Aviv was also the capital of Israel before it was moved to Jerusalem. Some countries do not recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and there are still foreign embassies in Tel Aviv.

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