Working Timeline of Medieval Anglo-Jewry

Like the 'Working Bibliography' this page is going to be something of a work in progress, not least because time constraint don't permit me to do this all at once. Therefore, I'll add a few dates whenever I can. As with every other aspect of this blog, anybody is more than welcome to submit dates for inclusion. For the ease of being able to just say 'the king' I have provided the regnal dates below (more precise ones will be given as required).

Regnal Years

William I - 1066-1087
William II - 1087-1100
Henry I - 1100-1135
Stephen - 1135-1154
Henry II - 1154-1189
Richard I - 1189-1199
John - 1199-1216
Henry III - 1216-1272
Edward I - 1272-1307


The only extant Pipe Roll for the reign of Henry I reveals that a number of Jews were lending money to the great and the good of the kingdom (and that those debtors weren't always keen to pay back the money that they owed).


Aaron of Lincoln, the wealthiest Jew in twelfth-century England, died with debts worth well over £15,000 which were confiscated by the Crown.


3 September - The coronation of Richard I at Westminster saw an attack on the Jews which purportedly began when somebody remembered that Richard had barred Jews and women from attending the coronation and then a number of Jews were found in the mist of the crowd. The violence would continue until the following day.


16-17 March - The massacre of Shabbot haGadol saw 150 Jews of York die at either their own hands or the hands of Christian attackers.

22 March - At Rouen, Richard I issued a charter of protection and privileges to Isaac son of Rabbi Josce his children.


10 April - John issued a gerneal charter of protection and privileges to the Jewish community of England.


The Domus Conversorum (House of Converts) was founded in London specifically for the maintenance of Jewish apostates and, as far as I am aware, this was an unprecedented institution in medieval Christendom.


28 December - Aaron of York was appointed as Archpresbyter of the Jews, the highest office a Jew could occupy in medieval England, for life (although this appointment lasted for less than a decade in reality).


27 August - The king issued two letters ordering that David of Oxford should be allowed to divorce his wife Muriel and that Muriel and her male compatriots were to present themselves before the Archbishop of York to account for their actions in appealing to the Parisian bet din.


Before 30 August - Aaron of York, once one of the richest Jews in thirteenth-century England, died and such was his fall from grace that not even his death was recorded.


1 November (All Saints Day) - The Edict of Expulsion came into force, thus ending two centuries of Jewish presence in England. They would not be allowed to return until the 1650s.

5 November - Edward I wrote a letter to the barons of Exchequer outlining why he had expelled the Jews and this mainly focuses on the (supposed) circumvention of the 1275 prohibition on usurious activities.

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