Theodor Herzl was certainly not thefirst Jew to dream of Zion, but he nevertheless put the wheels in motion (Zionism 1).
Zionism is the name given to the political and ideological creation of a Jewish national state. The rise of the Zionist movement in the late 19th century culminated in the creation of this state in Palestine in 1948. Herzl was born of well to do middle-class parents. Hefirst studied in a scientific secondary school, but to escape from its anti-Semitic atmosphere he transferred in 1875 to a school where most of the students were Jews. In 1878 the family moved from Budapest to Vienna, where he entered the University of Vienna to study law. He received his license to practice law in 1884 but chose to devote himself to literature. Remaining in Vienna, he became o correspondent for Neue Freie Presse (New Free Press), the liberal magazine of the bourgeoisie. In 1889 he married Julie Naschauer, daughter of a wealthy Jewish businessman in Vienna.
The marriage was unhappy, although three children were born to it. Herzl had a strong attachment to his mother, who was unable to get along with his wife. These difficulties were increased by the political activities of his later years, in which his wife took little interest. These political activities culminated in 1896, when Herzl published Der Judenstaat, an informational pamphlet in which he proposed that the Jewish question was a political question to be settled by a world council of nations.
Although the liberal magazine he worked for tried to prevent the publication of Der Judenstaat and never so much as mentioned it in it's columns, Herzl would not be deterred. He gathered a small coterie and set out to convene the First Zionist Congress that same year. Being thefirst political movement to unify the diverse proto-Zionists, five delegates among 200 men and perhaps as many as 10 women convened the First .