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The unique situation of Jews in Britain has had upsides and downsides
For the last few hundred years Jews have not faced overt persecution or anti-Semitism. Though welcomed into society, the casual stigmatization they faced often forced them to abandon their unique identity as Jews. While individual Jews prospered in Englan...
On February 4, 1657, Oliver Cromwell, Lord Protector of England, issued the first residence permit to a Jew, Luis Carvajal, since the expulsion of all Jews from England by King Edward I in the year 1290. The edict of expulsion had been officially overturn...
London, England
I think of the Jewish people, my beautiful nation. Despite all those who want to do everything in their power to remove us from the world, these special souls—some so lost and so dispersed, in such small Jewish communities—remain true to our ancestors, tr...
The Hague
Amazingly, Rabbi Katzman shows me a letter sent by the Sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson, to my grandfather, dated the ninth of Adar, 1949...
Annual conference renews and inspires, but also homes in on national concerns
It’s been anything but an ordinary summer in the United Kingdom. On June 23, its citizens voted to withdraw from the European Union in a move known as Brexit, with its implications and possible consequences still being debated. Europe continues to be on t...
With the help of a rabbi revitalizing a historic Jewish area, Samuel Lyons sees a milestone
The date of Samuel Lyons’ bar mitzvah passed by without celebration. But then, almost nothing went as planned for the hardy souls living in London’s East End during the Blitz. The term (German for “lightning”) refers to the relentless bombing campaigns by...
How royal protection shaped the legal status of the Jews and led to their expulsion
From the very beginning, the presence of the Jews in England would have been dependent on the express protection of the king. This shaped their legal status in ways both good and bad, and ultimately paved the way for their expulsion.
How the complex legal status of the Jews of England shaped the Magna Carta
The Magna Carta was the result of a standoff between King John of England and his barons in 12th century England. The special status of the Jewish community as property of the king was a factor in the tensions that led to the standoff, and is reflected in...
Jewish refugees from Nazi Europe and their impact on British scholarship
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