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Biographical entry Sieff, Israel Moses, Lord Sieff of Brimpton (1889 - 1972)

Hon FRCS 1969; LLD Manchester 1969.

4 May 1889
Businessman and Economist


Israel Sieff was born on 4 May 1889, and was educated at Manchester Grammar School and Manchester University. At school he met Simon Marks who had a similar upbringing - in fact he stated on the occasion of his admission to the Honorary Fellowship that it was from their parents that he and Simon had learnt the importance of helping people in distress. Their early friendship, which led naturally to their collaboration in business, was reinforced when each married the sister of the other, Israel marrying Rebecca Marks.

Israel Sieff became distinguished as an economist and was closely involved in the setting up of Political and Economic Planning. His other great interest was in scientific research, and he became an Honorary Fellow of the Weitzmann Institute. It was because the chief objectives of the College were the promotion of scientific research and the training of surgeons, thus helping people in distress, that Simon Marks and Israel Sieff became such enthusiastic supporters of the activities of the College, not only by the generous contributions of their own families towards the expenses of rebuilding the College after war damage, but also by attracting the interest of many of their business acquaintances to the same end.

In order to show their gratitude for his kindly and generous assistance the College admitted Israel Sieff to the Court of Patrons in 1966 and to the Honorary Fellowship in 1969.

Reference must also be made to Sieff's active interest in the affairs of World Jewry, for he was Vice-President of the World Jewish Congress, and Honorary President of the Zionist Federation of Great Britain and Ireland. In the course of his lifetime he contributed greatly to the agricultural and industrial development of Israel. It was for the distinguished service he rendered to so many worthy causes that he was created a Life Peer in 1966.

Yet in spite of all these honours Israel retained his delightfully modest personality which endeared him to his many friends and colleagues. He had a happy family life with his wife Rebecca and their daughter and three sons. He died in 1972.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Ann Roy Coll Surg Engl 1972, 50, 207].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England