History of Jews
Pre-16th c. England
Early Jews in England
- When the Normans conquered England in 1066, William the Conqueror encouraged Jewish people to move from France to England.
- Most of these Jews had fiscal jobs, such as coin dealers.
- They quickly built segregated communities in England.
- The Crown watched over Jews, but taxed them highly.
- Henry I delineated the liberties that they were given.
- Jews were the object of much hate in England, and many Jewish people were charged of crimes which they did not commit.
- Pope Innocent IV protested against this treatment, but the general people thought that Jewish people were all criminals.
- Jews were taxed at a substantially larger rate to finance the 3rd Crusade, and because of this, rioting ensued in England.
Killings and Riots
- In 1189, King Henry II died, and Richard I (Richard the Lionhearted) succeded him.
- Jewish people came to Westminster Abbey to offer him gifts, but he declined them.
- Riots began all over England, most notably in York, and later Richard ordered protection for the Jewish people.
- When Richard left for the Crusades, many Jews were attacked.
- After Richard returned, he was angry, because the Jews were his primary source of money.
- In 1194, Richard created the Exchequer of the Jews, which allowed the Crown to collect taxes on the Jews.
- Started in 1232, with Henry III's reign.
- Jews controlled disproportionate amounts of money; king taxed them greatly.
- In 1253, a law was passed forbidding Jews from settling in places that did not already have a Jewish community.
- In 1255, Jews asked to leave, but due to them being considered to be royal property, they couldn't.
- England started trading with Italian banks, removing need for Jewish financial services.
- In 1275, Edward I issued the Jewish Affairs Bill, forbidding money loan on interest.
- On July 18, 1290, Edward I banished the Jewish people from England.
Connection to "The Merchant of Venice"
"The Merchant of Venice Summary." Shmoop. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Oct. 2012. http://www.shmoop.com/merchant-of-venice/summary.html.
MrHistoryhelp. "Jew's in Medieval England." YouTube. YouTube, 15 Sept. 2011. Web. 29 Oct. 2012. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=stFsSee2j20.
"United Kingdom: Virtual Jewish History Tour." United Kingdom: Virtual Jewish History Tour. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 Oct. 2012. <http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/vjw/England.html>.