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Definition of CONSERVATIVE JUDAISM
: Judaism as practiced especially among some United States Jews with adherence to the Torah and Talmud but with allowance for some departures in keeping with differing times and circumstances — compare orthodox judaism, reform judaism
Form of Judaism that mediates between Reform Judaism and Orthodox Judaism. Founded in 19th-century Germany as the Historical School, it arose among German-Jewish theologians who advocated change but found Reform positions extreme. They accepted the Reform emphasis on critical scholarship, but wished to maintain a stricter observance of Jewish law (e.g., dietary laws) and continued belief in the coming of the messiah. In 1886, rabbis of this centrist persuasion founded the Jewish Theological Seminary of America (New York), leading to the development of Conservative Judaism as a religious movement.