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A Cruel and Desperate Man?

Esther Solomon (1771–1861)

Esther and Judah Solomon, husband and wife, lived in Sheerness-on-Thames until his transportation. She was left with their seven children, all aged under twelve.
In 1832 Esther, now aged about sixty, sailed into Hobart on the Palambam, with three of their daughters. She was devastated to find her lawful husband with another woman.
What followed for Judah and Esther was an ugly public dispute that lasted thirteen years. It tested the patience of three successive governors, and did enormous damage to Judah’s reputation. Esther appealed to each of the governors not to grant Judah a free pardon. A pardon would have permitted him to return to London, to obtain a divorce before the Bet Din, the Jewish court of law. Judah countered by accusing Esther of adultery, and of running a brothel and gaming den in London.

Abandoned in London with a large brood of young children, Esther was more than aggrieved to discover her husband’s new living arrangements in Hobart Town, and she pursued him for the rest of his life, and beyond.
Abandoned in London with a large brood of young children, Esther was more than aggrieved to discover her husband’s new living arrangements in Hobart Town, and she pursued him for the rest of his life, and beyond.

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