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Obituaries Australia

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Benjamin, David (1815–1893)

The death of Mr. David Benjamin is one which will be deplored as much at Melbourne, where, more than a quarter of a century ago, he occupied a position almost as important as his nephew does to-day, as in London. Here the cheery, good-hearted dear old man had won all hearts by his enthusiasm and activity in the cause of charity. One could never realise that it was a septuagenarian who was talking when, for instance, in the Council Chamber of the United Synagogue he advocated the cause of the Bayswater Synagogue with an affectionate vehemence all his own, or when he appealed to our higher feelings on some moot point of orthodoxy, with a dignity from which his lack of inches in no way detracted. He was indefatigable as an investigator of Board of Guardians cases, and it is to be feared that the general disorder to which he succumbed was due to a cold caught in draughty Devonshire Square hardly a week ago. Last Friday he was in synagogue as usual, on Saturday he fell ill, and on Sunday he was dead. There is something characteristic of the man in the readiness with which, like Colonel Newcombe, he responded to the roll call when his time came. Had he been more careful of himself he might have lived to celebrate his century, for his constitution was a wonderful one, but, doubtless, he preferred to die in the midst of his communal work. The remarkable attendance at his funeral on Wednesday was a testimony alike to the popularity of our dear friend who has left us, and to the esteem in which the home-comer from the colonies is generally held. Of him it cannot be said that we could have better spared a better man, for he was, indeed, the best of men, and of a type that is growing all too rare.

Original publication

Additional Resources

  • death notice, Sydney Morning Herald, 28 June 1893, p 1
  • will, Argus (Melbourne), 20 September 1893, p 6

Citation details

'Benjamin, David (1815–1893)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, accessed 20 October 2020.

© Copyright Obituaries Australia, 2010-2020

Life Summary [details]


London, Middlesex, England


26 June 1893
London, Middlesex, England

Cultural Heritage
Religious Influence
Passenger Ship