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As early as 1771, Marcus Herz had entered a vigorous protest against _mauscheln_, and at the first performance of "The Merchant of Venice" on August 16, 1788, the famous actor Fleck declaimed a prologue, composed by Ramler, in which he disavowed any intention to "sow hatred against the Jews, the brethren in faith of wise Mendelssohn," and asserted the sole purpose of the drama to be the combating of folly and vice wherever they appear.
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