Zvi Jacobson
Zvi Jacobson
Matisyahu as Zvi Jacobson
Name Zvi Jacobson
Status Alive
Age 100 (looks 30)
Occupation Rabbi
Place of Origin Prague, Czeck Republic
Date of Birth 8/12/1913
Player skywaterblue
Timezone CST
Notes Notes for Zvi Jacobson

Zvi Jacobson is a Rabbi who appears to be in his mid-30s, but what most of his congregants don't know is that he's also a Holocaust Survivor. Born in Prague, his misguided attempt to create a golem in the midst of Theresienstadt caught the attention of the Gloom and he was stolen away. After his escape, he discovered he was 'blessed' with immortality. He works for the Watch as a researcher.


Zvi Jacobson was born on Tish B'Av, in the Christian year of 1913, in Prague to a secular Jewish middle class family that maintained moderate ties to the old ways, the second of three sons. He kept up his Hebrew studies after his Bar Mitzvah and eventually made the unusual choice to enter Rabbinical Studies.

He was 25 in 1938, the year that Hitler's rise to power began to threaten Czechoslovakia. The Holocaust swept away his old life - although his younger brother had immigrated to Palestine, the rest of his family would be rounded up and sent to Theresienstadt. Theresienstadt was the 'model' Concentration Camp intended to house the wealthy and middle class Jews of Prague and elsewhere in respectable shape for Red Cross visitors. In reality, it was an overcrowded cesspool of dysentery and starvation, where overcrowding was 'relieved' by Selection and a train ticket to Auschwitz.

Zvi busied himself with serving his people in this trying time, and became obsessed with the old legend of Rabbi Loew's Golem, a mystical being formed out of clay that was brought to life to protect the Jews from trying times. With no access to books, Zvi recklessly attempted to create his own Golem, and was stolen away from Theresienstadt to somewhere, much, much worse: The Gloom.

How did he escape? How did he survive? His memory of life begins again on May 8th, 1945, the day the Soviets liberated Theresienstadt, having escaped the Gloom physically some time before. After liberation, he walked on foot until he ended up in a British-DP camp with the hopes of eventually immigrating to Palestine to join his younger brother, where he lingered until 1947, when his brother aided him in illegally immigrating. Once in Palestine, he joined his brother's farmstead just in time to take part in Israel's War of Independence.

Zvi was aware there was something unusual about him - it was impossible not to notice that tattoo that had sprung up on his chest - but for a long time he was willing to deny the obvious, burying it deep in the past. He moved to Jerusalem and became engaged in rebuilding the cultural traditions of the Orthodox. Only after his brother was killed in the Sinai War was he forced to come to grips with the truth: he wasn't aging like other men.

Since then, Zvi has taken up the position of wanderer - especially once Holocaust survivors who look 30 became first unlikely, and then illogical in the state of Israel. Only since the turn of the millennium has he come to realize that he may need to adopt aliases, forge documents and find some kind of steady financial resource. He moved to London in 2003, and has since been hired at Bevis Marks Synagogue as an assistant Rabbi - but only after he re-sat Rabbinical school in London to get current documents under his new name. His British Passport is currently his most prized possession.


Zvi Jacobson is 'much older than he looks' but he has a surprisingly spry outlook on life - if you enjoy spending hours in dusty tomes or long debates about Talmudic nitpicking. He lacks subtlety and exists mentally on a spiritual plane that only rarely touches day-to-day existence. He doesn't watch TV, and his knowledge of pop-culture doesn't go much further than Issac Singer. He's quick to lead you on a long, lengthy answer about minutia about Jewish life or the piece of research he's done, habits that may make him a great scholarly Rabbi and someone you want to brief you before your mission, but a pit-fall conversationalist.

With most of the 20th Century a living memory for him, he's quick to judge the day's politicians by standards of the old and accords few of them value - which sometimes comes at odds at work, where his position as assistant Rabbi at the oldest continuous serviced synagogue in London means his place of work is often a backdrop for political statements. He is surprised to find himself considered right-wing in the UK given his support for Israel.

Despite being a Holocaust survivor and having served in the nascent Israeli army, Zvi is surprisingly clueless about, well, survival. You would never take this guy on a mission: he's still figuring out cell phones and debit cards. There's a daffiness to his reality that modern folks might consider slightly Autistic, but since there's no one alive who knew him when, who could say?

Zvi is straight, but mostly asexual. He has no experience with women, had little interest BEFORE the Holocaust, and doesn't think he's likely to be interested any time soon. Despite this, he's chased by a lot of women in his congregation, especially as he updates his wardrobe.

Deeply religious, he's surprisingly upbeat about his curse even as he works to fight off otherworldly evil. For Zvi, his immortality and the Gloom are the proof that God and the Torah are real. As a religious Jew, he seeks no end to his life - suicide is a sin - though he does admit to sometimes feeling unworthy of such a gift.

Paranormal Abilities

Zvi is immortal - although he does age, drip by drip, the passage of time wears on him so slowly that seventy years after his ill-fated attempt to create a Golem, he's only visibly aged a few years. His immortality does not provide for rapid healing, and although he is fortunate not to know for a fact, he does not believe he would regrow missing limbs, or survive beheading or being shot in the head. He knows that he is immune to poison, suffocation and drowning, because he does not breathe. Zvi also has no need to eat, though he does so for pleasure, but he must drink water.

Emblazened across his chest is a tattoo-like marking in gold lettering of the Hebrew word 'emet' (truth). According to the Golem legend, should someone rub out the first letter to form 'met' (death) the spell empowering him with life would end.


Research: And how.

Languages: Zvi speaks Czech, German, Hebrew, Aramaic, Polish and English fluently, with a half-dozen other languages passable. He's started to pick up Spanish, Portugese and Ladino for his day job, and French to round it out for the Watch.

Guns: Despite being the last guy you want on your mission, Zvi can handle a machine gun and basic military tactics, since he obviously didn't get killed serving Israel in the War of Independence.

Kabbalic Magic: Zvi is reluctant to actually pursue the Occult practices himself, given his past. He would be a first-rate warlock if forced to push his boundaries. He's deeply afraid of what's out there…

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