1893. This London Ghetto, the background of this book, is a region where, amid uncleanness and squalor, the rose of romance blows yet a little longer in the raw air of English reality; a world which hides beneath its stony and unlovely surface an ...
inner world of dreams, fantastic and poetic as the mirage of the Orient where they were woven, of superstitions grotesque as the cathedral gargoyles of the Dark Ages in which they had birth. And over all lie tenderly some streaks of celestial light shining from the face of the great Lawgiver. The folk who compose these pictures are children of the Ghetto; their faults are bred of its hovering miasma of persecution, their virtues straightened and intensified by the narrowness of its horizon.