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havoc among them, that this is reckoned as one of the four most severe and bloody persecutions which the Jews ever experienced. In one instance, about the middle of the fourteenth century, an insurrection broke out against them at Toledo, when the most extraordinary effects of fury and despair were exhibited by a single Jew. Perceiving the zealots breaking into his house with intent to massacre all they found, he killed every individual who had taken refuge with him, and then destroyed himself, that he might deprive his enemies of that gratification.


As to Germany-whether the Jews committed greater and more numerous offences, or the people were more superstitiously zealous against them than in other there is scarcely a kingdom in which they have been so much abused. As a specimen, may be mentioned the charge brought against the Jews about the middle of the fourteenth century, of having poisoned the rivers and wells, because they escaped the common mortality that happened in most parts of Europe. This occasioned a persecution in several provinces of Germany, in which some were burned alive, and others most cruelly slaughtered. Those of Mentz, however, resolved to defend themselves, and, having seized about two hundred unarmed Christians, put them to death in a barbarous manner; upon which the incensed populace collected in great numbers, and, attacking the Jews with fury, killed about twelve thousand of them. The indignation and persecution extended over all Germany. In some parts of the country, the whole Hebrew nation was at this time without friends or retreat, and no one dared, at so critical a period, to interpose in their behalf.


possessors of their valuable libraries. Two centuries after their expulsion from England, and one after their expulsion from France, Spain, as if not to be outdone in religious persecution, followed the shameless example, though with more terrible effect; for the Jews of Spain, instead of being a caste, as in other countries, were an order of the state. Ferdinand issued a decree by which the whole Jewish nation were commanded to leave that monarch's dominions in the space of four months; and the people were prohibited, under the severest penalties, from affording victuals or any other assistance to such as should be found in the kingdom after that period. The misery and sufferings of those who thus embarked for foreign countries are inexpressible, and almost inconceivable. We may well decline the horrible detail.

The history of the Eastern Jews is similar to that which has been already given, in respect to the oppressions and miseries that fell on the devoted race, alternated with a few gleams of prosperity and happiness. Space is wanting to present even a faint outline of their varied fortunes. In the Persian dominions, under Kobad, in the sixth century, an attempt was made to compel all the professors of Judaism to embrace the Persian religion. Chosroes the Great, his successor, treated that people with still greater severity. Under Hormisdas III., they enjoyed a period of privilege and repose. Chosroes II. at first persecuted the nation, but was afterwards reconciled to them, and they seem to have rendered him many important services. When that prince took Jerusalem, he delivered all the Christian prisoners into their hands; and no less than ninety thousand were put to death, to gratify the implacable Jews.

When Mahomet appeared, in the seventh century, many of the Jews in the East, thinking him to be the promised Messiah, became converts to the religion which he promulgated. He, however, at length gave that people little reason to think that he entertained towards them any special regard. They became ob

The Jews were invited into England by William the Conqueror, A. D. 1066-1087. During the reign of King John, (A. D. 1200—1216,) the kingdom was distracted with intestine broils, and he was under the necessity of supporting his government by the most oppressive exactions, the heaviest of which fell on the Jews. At length the king confiscated their property and effects, and expelled them from the country, by a public edict.jects of his detestation, and, engaging in war with them. Henry III. endeavored to procure their conversion; for which purpose he founded a seminary (A. D. 1233) for the maintenance of Jewish converts, in which they might live without labor or usury. This arrangement induced many to profess Christianity; and that institution we are told, continued a considerable period.

under their leader Cagab, he routed them, and destroyed great numbers. After the conquest of Persia by Omar the khalif that succeeded Mahomet - the Jews under that monarchy became subject to the Saracens, and shared the common misfortunes resulting from the changes introduced by war and conquest. During the eighth and ninth centuries, they were occasionally favored by the khalifs. Under the Saracen rule their academies flourished, and they were permitted to enjoy their ancient privileges. At other times, they were oppressed and down-trodden, according to their usual fate.

In the tenth and eleventh centuries, the Eastern Jews enjoyed a degree of light and prosperity, whilst the rest of the world was overwhelmed in darkness and infelicity; but these seasons were of short duration. Their internal disputes, and the zeal of the crusaders, occasioned the destruction of their several academies, and the almost total expulsion of the Jews from the East. In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, the number and power of this people in that quarter had

In Norwich, the Jews were accused of having stolen a Christian child, and of having kept him a year, with a view to crucify him at the ensuing passover; but, being detected previously to that period, they suffered a severe punishment. In London, the Hebrews were accused of some murders and other atrocious offences, and, after enduring various vexations and sufferings, they were obliged to pay one third of all their wealth. The holy war, in which King Henry embarked, was another pretence for demanding money from his subjects, and especially from the Jews, whom he scrupled not to deprive of what they had left, (A. D. 1252.) Subsequently the king actually sold to his brother, Richard of Cornwall, all theJews in the realm for five thousand marks, giving him full power over their property and persons! It is agreed by most writers that the Jews were ex-greatly decreased. Many were converted to Mahomepelled England by a perpetual edict about this time, A. D. 1291. Their number is variously estimated at from fifteen thousand to over sixteen thousand; all their property, debts, obligations, mortgages, escheated to the king. The convents made themselves

tanism, and others left the Babylonian territories. The wars that succeeded, tended to complete their ruin in that country. It is probable that the Jews in the Grecian empire during the thirteenth and fourteenth cen. turies enjoyed tranquillity.




A. D. 1517 to 1849.

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The Dispersion since the Reformation General Remarks Usefulness of the Jews in

maxims of toleration which eventually resulted from that great revolution.

During the Thirty Years' War, the Jews assisted with great valor in the defence of Prague, and obtained the good will of the grateful emperor. Before that, the Reformation had incidentally been the cause of Literature Trade War Finance another important benefit- the opening of the free Polish Jews-Toleration slowly advances cities of Holland, where a great number of PortuMendelssohn Napoleon assembles a Grand guese Jews settled and contributed largely to the comSanhedrim at Paris-Toleration in Italy-mercial wealth of the republic. In England, during Germany-Policy of Russia-Perfect Tol- the protectorate of Cromwell, the question of permiteration in the United States, &c. Jews, &c., ting the Jews to come into that country was seriously in Palestine The Hebrew Race found debated; but no decision was then arrived at. The every where Remarks on Judaism and necessities of Charles II. and his courtiers quietly effected the introduction of that people into the kingChristianity. dom. The convenient Jews, insensibly stealing into it, have ever since maintained their footing, and have doubtless contributed their due proportion to the national wealth.

THE Dark Ages, commencing in the fifth century, and ending in the fifteenth, had now finished their sluggish and disastrous course. They brought with them woe and misfortune to all, but to none more than to the descendants of Abraham. As we have seen, during this long night of the world, they were subjected, by the dominant powers both of the West and of the East, to every species of deprivation, persecution, and misery. Not a tithe of the hardships and injustice which they endured has here been put on record, and, indeed, only an inconsiderable proportion of their crimes. But, in regard to their fellow-men, the punishment seems to have far exceeded the provocation. They were Jews, and therefore hated, scorned, and oppressed by all mankind. Such were the ancient predictions of their prophets.

But the times were changed. The spirit of persecution, though by no means extinct, began by degrees to abate, and the general Jewish character to undergo some improvement. The great events of this period the invention and rapid progress of printing and the Reformation - could not but have some effect on the condition of the Jews. This people were by no means slow to avail themselves of the advantages offered to learning by the general use of printing. From their presses at Venice, in Turkey, and in other quarters, splendid specimens of typography were sent forth, and the respect of the learned world was insensibly increased by the facilities thus afforded for the knowledge of the Scriptures in the original language, and the bold opening of all the mysteries of rabbinical wisdom to those who had sufficient inquisitiveness and industry to enter on that wide and unknown field of study.

The Reformation affected the Hebrew people rather in its remote than in its immediate consequences. They were still liable to suffer from the prejudices entertained against them by men in power; but, excluded from one city or state, they found refuge in another till the storm passed off. Wherever they had opportunity, they opened important branches of commerce, though they were usually more addicted to money-lending and the sale of gold trinkets and jew elry. Luther was disposed, on the whole, to regard this people humanely; though detesting them usurers, he thought their conversion should be at tempted only by persuasion. But the condition of the Jews was ameliorated through the Reformation, by its indirect action in raising up new and more dangerous enemies to the power of the Catholic church. They were, in fact, forgotten or overlooked in the conflict. Their condition was ameliorated especially by the wise


At the commencement of the eighteenth century, Poland and the adjacent provinces had, for some time, been the head-quarters of the Jews. Here they had almost every branch of traffic; in some towns, they formed the greater part of the population. In that kingdom, they constituted the only middle order between the nobles and the serfs. There, also, was the seat of rabbinical papacy. In Western Europe, in the mean time, those great changes which disorganized the framework of society, were maturing. The condition of the Israelite, and even his religion, was affected by the new opinions, as they affected Christians and Christianity. Time-honored institutions and principles were, in both orders, for a time shaken. By the philosophic, atheistic school the Jews were detested, as the ancestors of the Christians. But the problem of toleration and freedom was in process of being worked out by degrees. The new views had, in effect, an application to all nations and classes of men. Still the early and ancient prejudices against the Hebrew race abated but slowly.

The legislation of Frederic the Great - in the middle of the eighteenth century - was rigid and absurd. It limited the number of the Jews in the kingdom; divided them into those who held an ordinary or extraordinary protection from the crown; banished widows who married foreign Jews, and enacted other similar relics of the dark ages. In England, a more tolerant spirit was exercised, though a bill for naturalizing all the Jews who had resided three years in the kingdom, which was passed by both houses of Parliament in 1753, caused so great a popular clamor, that it became necessary to repeal the obnoxious statute. In Italy, after the French revolution, this people enjoyed freedom and quiet. In Rome, they experienced some restrictions. In the maritime towns, they continued to prosper.

In Germany, the celebrated Moses Mendelssohn, a Jew of vast genius and learning, had the influence, through his temper and writings, to inspire an unusual kindness of feeling toward the race to which he belonged. By his example, he emancipated many of the Jewish youth from the control of rabbinism. In the year 1780, when Joseph II. ascended the throne, among the first measures of this restless and universal reformer was one for the amelioration of the condition of the Jews. They had been barely tolerated for some time previously, except that, in certain parts of the empire, they lived without much molestation. The act of Joseph opened to them the schools and universities of


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the empire, and an almost unlimited field of trade. few restrictions, however, were imposed upon them. The French revolution that event which effected so many changes, both evil and good, and whose consequences are still in progress among mankind - found some Jews in France, as a few were permitted to settle there after the great final expulsion, and a number had been allowed to remain in the country. In the years 1784 and 1788, some grievances were redressed, in reference to this people, by the king's government; but, in 1790, they were recognized as citizens of the great republic. In 1806, Napoleon, in the height of his power and grandeur, condescended to take into consideration the condition of the Jews, and summoned a grand sanhedrim to assemble at Paris. Several important questions were submitted to be answered by that body. The deputies, upon their assembling, gave different answers to the questions, though it is supposed that these were not universally recognized as the authoritative sentence of the nation. Napoleon's object was less a matter of vanity and benevolence than of policy. He knew their importance in the financial department of his government and empire, and was not unwilling to secure their aid and friendship. The result was a decree, declaring those only to be French citizens, who followed some useful calling, while all Jews were subject to conscription.

The laws of France relating to the Jews have remained unaltered, unless of late. In Italy, excepting in the Tuscan dominions, they became, some few years since, subject to the ancient regulations, which were more favorable than in most other countries of an early date. In Rome, all distinctions, separating them from the rest of the community, have, it appears, been abolished. In Germany, not long since, some hostility was lurking in the popular feeling, not so much from religious animosity as from commercial jealousy, in several of the great places of trade. The king of Prussia, even before the year 1815, when the diet of the German empire had pledged itself to turn its attention to the improvement of the civil state of the Jews, had encouraged the interests of education among that people. His zeal for this and other important objects, in reference to them, was not wasted on an ungrateful race. Many of them are stated to have fallen in the Prussian ranks at Waterloo. As late as the year 1829, while the states of Wurtemberg were discussing a bill for the extension of the civil rights to the Jews, the populace of Stuttgard surrounded the hall of assembly with fierce outcries,-" Down with the Jews; down with the friends of the Jews!" But, to the honor of the states be it said, they remained unmoved, and proceeded to ratify the obnoxious edict. The policy of the Russian government seems to have been, in more modern times, less liberal than that of other European governments. The overthrow of the rabbinical authority has been aimed at; many Jews have been transferred from the crowded Polish provinces to the less thickly settled parts of the empire. Some restrictions as to trade have been imposed within the present century; and a decree of the emperor Nicholas, some eighteen or twenty years since, seemed to be directed partly at the rabbins, and partly at the petty traffickers. The latter are entirely prohibited in the Russian dominions.

In the United States, under the constitution, the Jews have all the liberty, rights, and privileges,


which any other class of citizens enjoys; all offices of power and trust are open to them, equally with the members of any other creed or sect; and they have uniformly been treated with the consideration and respect to which all the inhabitants of the land are entitled, according to their personal character and conduct. Although, in all Protestant countries, they may not receive the consideration which is thus accorded to them in the United States, yet they are treated with great comparative mildness and charity. In England, they have been long allowed the full liberty of their religion, an unrestrained freedom of commerce, and the quiet and peaceable enjoyment of their property. More recently, the civil disabilities have been removed, and a professed Jew-Baron Rothschild-for the first time, has been admitted as a member of Parliament.

The Israelitish race, driven, at an early period, from their native land by the Roman arms, have never since fully re-occupied it. At present, only a small proportion of its inhabitants are Jews, although their numbers have considerably increased of late years. The country languishes under the rule of the Turks, having a mixed population of Ottoman Turks, Greeks, Arabs, Turkomans, Copts, and Armenians. As the Turkish government has recently manifested a spirit of liberality and toleration, the country will doubtless improve with a good deal of rapidity.

An ancient people, called the Druses, still occupy the more northern heights of Lebanon; but, as they properly come within the limits of Syria, we shall notice them in giving the history of that country. A small remnant of the Samaritans still worship on Mount Gerizim. The city of Tiberias, built by Herod the tetrarch, is still a place of residence for the Jews. In the minds of many of this race, the hope of a return to the home of their fathers is cherished with the liveliest enthusiasm and the fondest affection; and occasionally, in modern times, there have been seeming indications of the possibility, if not probability, of the event.

In our day, the Jews have partaken largely of the spirit of the age. Individuals of this ancient and renowned race appear to be pressing, with new earnestness and success, into every path of honorable distinction. A great degree of intellectual activity, indeed, prevails throughout the nation. Besides the indefatigable toils of Wolff in all parts of the world, many distinguished Hebrews, accepting Christ as the true Messiah, have made great efforts to convert their race, and unite them in a consentaneous effort for the improvement, elevation, and moral regeneration, of all who bear the name of Judah, or boast the lineage of Jacob.

The Hebrew race, at present, occupy the four quarters of the globe. They are found under every climate, in every region, under every form of government, wearing the indelible national stamp upon their features, united by the close moral affinity of habits and feelings, and, at least the mass of the community, treasuring in their hearts the same reliance on their national privileges, the same trust in the promises of their God, the same conscientious attachment to the religion of their fathers, the same hope of return to Canaan and prosperity in the land of their glorious ancestors. But, whatever purposes may have been once answered by Judaism as a local, restricted, representative religion, and they were infinitely important purposes, it is plain that a religion like Chris



tianity, which embraces the whole human race in the sphere of its benevolence, is alone suited to any consistent and enlarged view of the ultimate designs of the Creator.


General Views· Extent of Jewry · Divisions - Population Army Cities-Jerusalem - Hebron Gaza

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been given, making their number from about 3,000,000 to 6 or 7,000,000. The Weimar estimate, made some years since, gave the total amount of the Jewish population in the world, at a little more than 3,000,000. In that statement, the Jews of Africa stand as follows: Morocco and Fez, 300,000; Tunis, 130,000; Algiers, 30,000; Gabez or Habah, 90,000; Tripoli, 12,000; Egypt, 12,000; -total, 504,000. The Jews of Asia: Asiatic Turkey, 330,000; Arabia, 200,000; Hindostan, 100,000; China, 60,000; Turkistan, 40,000; Province of Iran, 35,000; Russia in Samaria TiAsia, 3000; total, 738,000. The Jews of EuLaw of Cleanliness rope:-In Russia and Poland, 608,800; Austria, Of Property Militia-Armor-Weap- 453,524; European Turkey, 321,000; States of the ons Fortifications Rites Sacred Ed- German Confederation, 138,000; Prussia, 134,000; ifices-Synagogues - Festivals Persons Netherlands, 80,000; France, 60,000; Italy, 36,000; Scape-Goat Marriage - Education Great Britain, 12,000; Cracow, 7,300; Ionian Isles, Tillage-Handicrafts-Trade-Building 7000; Denmark, 6000; Switzerland, 1970; Sweden, Music Literature Houses Furniture - Food - Dress Social Distinctions - Celebrated Characters. In the course of the preceding narrative, the extent, divisions, population, &c., of the Jewish dominions have been incidentally presented, and, perhaps, with as much minuteness as the design of this work would admit. In addition, it may be remarked, that, as to extent, the Hebrew territory properly included, as settled and afterwards conquered by the twelve tribes, an area of seven degrees of latitude, by about as many of longitude. This was in the time of David and Solomon, when the empire was most powerful. The Arnon was the boundary which separated the Hebrews on the east from the Ammonites, and on the south from the Moabites, until they were subdued by David. Then the lines of his dominion extended north as far as 35° 15′ of latitude, where the city of Thapsacus was situated. The kingdom of Damascus, with the cities of Batack and Banath, was for a time occupied by the armies of David. On the east, his dominions may, in a loose sense, be said to have extended to the Euphrates, as they reached to the extensive deserts which gird the shore of that river.

The portions assigned at first to the several tribes need not here be repeated, but the names of the several divisions of the Holy Land, as it was known in the days of its splendor, are here given. It embraced Judea, Samaria, Galilee, Syro-Phoenicia, and Perea, with other smaller divisions. These continued nearly the same to the time of Christ. The numbers and military power having also been successively exhibited in the narrative, it remains that we give only their present number. Scattered and divided over the face of the earth, they have now, of course, no military power aside from that of the communities to which they belong. In some instances, though not all, they may add their quota to the national strength. This is allowed, and even required, in some governments, as in ours, but is probably, even at this day, no part of the regulation of some countries containing within them a Jewish population. The aggregate of the Hebrew nation in the world is still very considerable. They have ever been a most prolific race, as the history of their repeated wars and massacres, destruction and repair, has evinced.

To estimate the number of a people thus scattered and diffused in almost every nation, is an attempt which no one can make with any hope of a certain approximation to the truth. Estimates have, however,

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430;-total, 1,918,053. The Jews of America: North America, 5000; Netherlandish Colonies, 500; Demerara and Essequibo, 200; - total, 5700. But the Jewish population has doubtless increased greatly since this estimate was made, especially in the United States. If it has participated in the proportionate increase of the inhabitants of Europe and America since the general pacification in 1815, we may place the number of this people at least one third higher than the Weimar statement. In the United States, through the extent of immigration of late years, we may put it at more than ten times the number there assigned to this country.

As to military power· militia levies sometimes, as in Jehoshaphat's reign, brought more than a million of men into the field at once. The standing army of David amounted to twenty-five thousand, and the militia to upwards of a million of men; and this force enabled the Jews, in Solomon's time, to hold the political balance of the world - being between Egypt and all Africa, on the one side, and Assyria, at the head of Asia, on the other

Chief Cities. Such, in ancient times, was the fertility of the soil of Palestine, and the density and industry of its inhabitants, that many considerable cities were sustained, and very many more towns of smaller size. Indeed, for the extent and resources of the country, it is wonderful that such collections of people were brought together for the purposes of trade and the arts, and especially for war.

We are informed by Josephus that, in Galilee alone, there were two hundred and four cities and towns; that the largest of the cities had one hundred and fifty thousand, and the smaller towns fifteen thousand, inhabitants. If this were literally so, and the other parts of the Holy Land bore any proportion to this amount, it displays an astonishing state of things in respect to the productiveness of the territory, and the ingenuity of its people. Its largest and most celebrated city, -one of the most celebrated in the world- and the most hallowed in its associations, was Jerusalem.

According to Josephus, Jerusalem was the capital of Melchisedec's kingdom, called Salem, in Genesis And the Arabians assert that it was built in honor of Melchisedec by twelve neighboring kings, and that he called it Jerusalem. But nothing is known with certainty respecting it till the time of David, who captured it from the Jebusites, and made it the capital of his kingdom.

It has undergone a greater variety of fortune, per

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haps, than any other city on the globe; has been oftener taken, destroyed, and rebuilt- as if it were held for some mysterious, ulterior purpose. It was first taken by Hazael, the king of Syria, who slew all the nobility, but did not destroy the city. It was afterwards taken by Nebuchadnezzar, who destroyed it, and carried away the inhabitants. It was rebuilt some seventy years after by permission of Cyrus, and continued the capital of Judea till the time of Vespasian, by whose son Titus, it was wholly destroyed, attended by an amazing amount of misery and slaughter. The new buildings afterwards erected amidst the ruins were levelled with the ground by Hadrian, A. D. 118. Under the auspices, however, of this emperor, it was finally rebuilt, and seemed likely to recover its former grandeur; but it was a short-lived change. The city was found in a forlorn and ruinous situation by the empress Helena, mother of Constantine the Great. It was taken by the victorious Omar, in 637, and held by the khalifs, one of whom, Haroun Alraschida name rendered familiar to us by the Oriental romance of the "Thousand and One Nights". sent the huge keys of the city to his friend Charlemagne, a kindred spirit, in token of admiration and esteem. Omar, its conqueror, erected the beautiful mosque which now bears his name, on the site of the temple. Of this mosque the curious fact is related, that when Saladin retook Jerusalem from the crusaders, he caused the mosque to be purified by washing it all over with rose water. The holy city has been in a comparatively depressed state ever since the khalifs, indeed, ever since Constantine,- with some occasional alleviation of its miseries,-contended for and overrun successively by many tribes and nations.

Jerusalem, in the height of its greatness, was divided into four parts, each enclosed within its own walls1. The old city of Jebus, which stood upon Mount Zion, where David built a magnificent castle and

palace, which became the residence both of himself and his successors. 2. The lower city, in which stood the two sumptuous palaces which Solomon built for himself and queen, and other stately buildings erected by Herod and others. 3. The new city, mostly inhabited by tradesmen, artificers, and merchants; and, 4. Mount Moriah, on which was built that wonder of the world, the temple of Solomon, and since then, that erected by the Jews on their return from Babylon, and afterwards extensively repaired, adorned, and enriched by Herod the Great.

Jerusalem at present is but the shadow of what it was in ancient times. It is now a town not far from three miles in circumference, situated on a rocky mountain, surrounded on all sides, except the north, with a steep ascent and deep valleys, and then again environed with other hills at some distance from these. The soil is, for the most part, stony, yet affords corn, wine, and oil, where cultivated. The houses are built with flint stones, one story high. The top of the dwelling is flat and plastered, having battlements a yard high. In the daytime, the people screen themselves from the sun under the roof; in the night, they walk, eat, and sleep on it. The number of inhabitants is said, by some, to be about twenty thousand; by others, however, it is put considerably less. The lowest estimate given of late is, probably, that of Dr. Robinson, in his Biblical Researches. He puts down the Mahometans at four thousand five hundred; the Jews, three thousand; the Christians, three thousand five hundred. To these are to be added, for the convents and garrison, about five hundred more, making in all eleven thousand five hundred. Surely the glory of Jerusalem is departed, and she has sunk into the neglected capital of a petty Turkish province !

Some streets seem to consist of ruins rather than dwelling-houses. Within the walls large places lie desolate, covered with stones and rubbish. In digging

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