Definition[ edit ] Narrow ethnic definition[ edit ] In the narrower ethnic definition, a Sephardi Jew is a Jew descended from the Jews who lived in the Iberian Peninsula in the late 15th century, immediately prior to the issuance of the Alhambra Decree of by order of the Catholic Monarchs in Spain, and the decree of in Portugal by order of King Manuel I. Sephardic law and customs , Maghrebi Jews , Mizrahi Jews , and Jewish ethnic divisions The modern Israeli Hebrew definition of Sephardi is a much broader , religious based, definition that generally excludes ethnic considerations. In its most basic form, this broad religious definition of a Sephardi refers to any Jew, of any ethnic background, who follows the customs and traditions of Sepharad. For religious purposes, and in modern Israel, “Sephardim” is most often used in this wider sense which encompasses most non-Ashkenazi Jews who are not ethnically Sephardi, but are in most instances of West Asian or North African origin, but who nonetheless commonly use a Sephardic style of liturgy, meaning a majority of Mizrahi Jews. The term Sephardi in the broad sense, thus describes the nusach Hebrew language , “liturgical tradition” used by Sephardi Jews in their Siddur prayer book. A nusach is defined by a liturgical tradition’s choice of prayers, order of prayers, text of prayers and melodies used in the singing of prayers. Sephardim traditionally pray using Minhag Sefarad. The term Nusach Sefard or Nusach Sfarad does not refer to the liturgy generally recited by Sephardim proper or even Sephardi in a broader sense, but rather to an alternative Eastern European liturgy used by many Hasidim who are in fact Ashkenazi. Additionally, Ethiopian Jews , whose branch of practiced Judaism is known as Haymanot , have recently come under the umbrella of Israel’s already broad Sephardic Chief Rabbinate. Divisions[ edit ] The divisions among Sephardim and their descendants today are largely a result of the consequences of the Royal edicts of expulsion.
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A study of men who have proven paternal descent from male members of Eastern Sephardic communities in Turkey, Greece, Bulgaria, Rhodes, Italy and the Balkans. Detailed Y chromosome DNA sequence signatures will be obtained from the cohort. This is the first genetic study of descendants from these historically important Jewish communities.
Portugal’s Jewish community, with a cultural and religious legacy dating back to antiquity, numbers over 1,, most of whom live in Lisbon. There are smaller communities in Oporto, Belmonte and Algarve.
It requires examining at least 3, years of ancient human history using documents in vast quantities and variety written in at least ten near Eastern languages. As archaeological discovery relies upon researchers and scholars from diverse disciplines, the goal is to interpret all of the factual data, focusing on the most consistent theory. In this case, it is complicated by long standing politics and religious and cultural prejudices. The ethnic stock to which Jews originally trace their ancestry was a confederation of Iron Age semitic-speaking tribes known as the Israelites that inhabited a part of Canaan during the tribal and monarchic periods.
The Twelve Tribes are described as descending from the twelve sons of Jacob. Jacob and his family migrated to Ancient Egypt after being invited to live with Jacob’s son Joseph by the Pharaoh himself. The patriarchs’ descendants were later enslaved until the Exodus led by Moses , after which the Israelites conquered Canaan under Moses’ successor Joshua , went through the period of the Biblical judges after the death of Joshua, then through the mediation of Samuel became subject to a king, Saul , who was succeeded by David and then Solomon , after whom the United Monarchy ended and was split into a separate Kingdom of Israel and a Kingdom of Judah.
The Kingdom of Judah is described as comprising the Tribe of Judah , the Tribe of Benjamin , and partially the Tribe of Levi , and later adding other tribes who migrated there from the Kingdom of Israel. The Israelites and their culture, according to the modern archaeological account, did not overtake the region by force, but instead branched out of the Canaanite peoples and culture through the development of a distinct monolatristic —and later monotheistic —religion centered on Yahweh , one of the Ancient Canaanite deities.
The growth of Yahweh-centric belief, along with a number of cultic practices, gradually gave rise to a distinct Israelite ethnic group , setting them apart from other Canaanites.
History of the Jews in Colonial America
Early Jewish settlers brought with them an expertise in refining sugar, which soon inspired the English to build a plantation and slavery economy that eventually led to freedom for an independent island culture. It is the oldest continuing parliamentary democracy outside England. Jews built the oldest Mikvah ritual bath in the Americas. Their synagogue of , destroyed in a hurricane, was rebuilt in as Nidhe Israel Synagogue of the Scattered of Israel. Today it is believed that nearly all the people of Iberian descent in Barbados were of Sephardic Jewish ancestry.
Quiet sidewalk seller of fruit and vegetables in downtown Bridgetown, Barbados.
On the eve of the Holocaust, there were approximately 4, Sephardic Jews living in the Netherlands, of a total Jewish population of some , (3%). After the war, the Sephardic community had declined to some people, 20% of the pre-war population.
Are Ashkenazi Jews the descendants of Judah? There are some people who continue to claim that Ashkenazi Jews are the descendants of the Khazars, however, this has been completely debunked. Although, there is evidence that the existing European Jewish population did absorb some Jewish Khazars, the claim of the Khazars being the origin of European Jewry has never been accepted by credible scholars for various reasons: There is no real evidence to support the whole population converted to Judaism. Furthermore, the majority of these converts to Judaism went on to convert to Christianity and Islam.
Jewish migration in history: Margolis and Shapiro Genetic research: Please see the related articles about this subject. The name used to identify these peoples are testament to this fact in that Ashkenaz was the son of Gomer, who was the son of Japheth. Japheth eventually became the progenitor of all European peoples. Judah, however, came from the line or lineage of Shem, Japheth’s brother.
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The name comes from Sepharad Template: Sefarad , a Biblical location. More broadly, the term Sephardi has come to include Jews of Arabic and Persian backgrounds who have no historical connection to Iberia except their use of a Sephardic style of liturgy. For religious purposes, Jews of these communities are considered to be “Sephardim”, meaning not “Spanish Jews” but “Jews of the Spanish rite”. In the same way, Ashkenazim means “Jews of the German rite”, whether or not their families actually originate in Germany.
In this photo taken on Tuesday, May 5, , a Jewish woman reads a book at the main Jewish synagogue in Lisbon. Portugal enacted in March a law to grant citizenship to descendants of Sephardic.
Sefarad , a Biblical location. For religious purposes, and in modern Israel, “Sephardim” is often used in a wider sense to include most Jews of Asian and African origin, who use a Sephardic style of liturgy. This article is mostly concerned with Sephardim in the narrower ethnic sense, rather than in this broader Modern Israeli Hebrew definition. The term Sephardi can also describe the nusach Hebrew language , “liturgical tradition” used by Sephardi Jews in their Siddur prayer book. A nusach is defined by a liturgical tradition’s choice of prayers, order of prayers, text of prayers and melodies used in the singing of prayers.
Sephardim traditionally pray using Minhag Sefarad, which is quite similar to Nusach Edot haMizrach liturgy of the Eastern Congregations. For more details of the Sephardic liturgy see Sephardic Judaism. Note that the term Nusach Sefard or Nusach Sfarad does not refer to the liturgy generally recited by Sephardim, but rather to an alternative Eastern European liturgy used by many Hasidim.
The most prominent sub-group consists of the descendants of the Jews expelled from Spain in , who settled in various parts of the Ottoman Empire , in particular Salonica and Istanbul , and whose traditional language is Judaeo-Spanish , sometimes known as Judezmo or Ladino. Several of these “Moroccan” Jews emigrated back to the Iberian Peninsula to form the core of the Gibraltar community see History of the Jews in Gibraltar. In the 19th century, modern Spanish gradually replaced Haketia as mother tongue among most Moroccan Sephardim .
A fourth sub-group, known as Crypto-Jews, are those who choose to remain hidden since the Spanish and Mexican Inquisitions, but practice secret Jewish rites in privacy. Library of Congress, Microfiche Safarditas are found particularly in the northern state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico, the American Southwest i.
The American Sephardi Federation
Things concerning Jews in Portland and everywhere that happen here and in Israel coming from an American-Israeli. Back in Recife, we find another synagogue that turns out to be the first known synagogue built in the New World in Spain expelled , Jews. They came to be known as Hidden Jews. From and again in Jews of Spain were forcibly converted to Christianity.
The American Sephardi Federation preserves and promotes the history, traditions, and rich mosaic culture of Greater Sephardic communities as an integral part of the Jewish experience.
During the Exodus, the name was given to the Tribe of Judah , descended from the patriarch Judah. After the conquest and settlement of the land of Canaan , Judah also referred to the territory allocated to the tribe. After the splitting of the united Kingdom of Israel , the name was used for the southern kingdom of Judah. The kingdom now encompassed the tribes of Judah, Benjamin and Simeon , along with some of the cities of the Levites. When the word makes its first appearance in writing in the book of Esther its meaning has already expanded to include converts to the Jewish religion as well as descendants of Israelites.
More commonly the Talmud uses the term Bnei Yisrael, i. According to the Talmud then, there is no distinction between “religious Jews” and “secular Jews. Development in European languages[ edit ] A page from Elia Levita ‘s Yiddish – Hebrew – Latin – German dictionary 16th century contains a list of nations, including an entry for Jew: The Latin term, following the Greek version, is Iudaeus, and from these sources the term passed to other European languages.
How do millions of Ashkenazi Jews react when, after hundreds of years, they finally get permission to eat kitniyot on Passover? This year marks the first time that many American Jews will learn to include these foods at their holiday table. My Ashkenazi friends, I have tasted your Passover foods of bitterness. I know you have suffered many years enslaved to a diet of matzo brei with cinnamon and sugar.
I am happy that more American Jews will soon be enjoying kitniyot on Passover. For one thing, that makes it more likely that a wider variety of Passover products will be available for my family in my local grocery store.
In regard to the origin of the name ‘Ashkenazi’ for European Jews is that Ashkenaz was the ancient Jewish name for Germany just as Sepharad was the ancient Jewish name for Spain hence ‘Sephardi’ Jews.
The naturalisations were approved a day after Spain adopted its new citizenship law for descendants of Sephardic Jews, said Justice Minister Rafael Catala. It allows applicants to maintain their original citizenship so they can have dual nationality. Sephardic Jews were forced out of Spain during the Inquisition, while those who remained had to convert to Catholicism or risk being burnt at the stake Those granted citizenship Friday applied under an older law requiring them to relinquish home country nationality but can now have dual nationality.
Spain’s Federation of Jewish Communities praised the mass naturalizations, adding that most applicants were from Morocco, Turkey and Venezuela. The new law gives Sephardic Jews and their descendants three years to seek a Spanish passport, with the right to work and live in the nation European Union. The naturalisations closes a dark chapter of Spanish. A man in a kipa in the new synagogue at the Bukharian Sephardic Jewish Center Like others seeking Spanish citizenship, applicants must be tested in basic Spanish and pass a current events and culture test about Spain.
They also must establish a modern-day link to Spain, which can be as simple as donating to a Spanish charity or as expensive as buying property. The Spanish Jewish federation has received more than 5, requests for information about the Spanish law. No one knows how many people might be eligible, though some estimates run into the millions.
Portugal Virtual Jewish History Tour
Off limits pairs include relationships between mother and son, father and daughter, sister and brother, grandfather and granddaughter, grandmother and grandson, aunt and nephew. Though the verses see nothing out of place with a union between an uncle and his niece, American law does. Marrying a son-in-law or daughter-in-law is taboo, as well.
But a set of letters dating back to the late s led him in a different direction. The letters, written by a family friend, described the fate of relatives during the Holocaust. One problem: they were written in Ladino, a language historically spoken by Sephardic Jews but .
Tracing the Tribe is a blog about Jewish genealogy – All the developments, tools and resources you’ll need to peer more closely into your family tree. Created in at JTA’s request, it is now independent. Israel and a much older connection Two items this week focused on the Philippines, which has a little-known and very interesting Jewish history dating from Inquisition days, when the islands were a refuge for Jews escaping from persecution.
Additionally, the Inquisition used the Philippines as a sort of penal colony. There are Mexican Inquisition records indicating that people were sentenced to Manila for several years. One story concerned a monument to be dedicated in June in Israel commemorating the “Open Doors” program, and remembering the courage, hospitality and determination of the Philippine government, through President Manuel L. Quezon, to give humanitarian support to European Jews seeking refuge from the Holocaust in the s.
The second story was about a Philippino family that learned about its Sephardic Converso background and has just returned to Judaism in Kansas City. Tracing the Tribe posted on the country’s Jewish history in March Here’s a link to the Embassy of Israel’s web site for an online exhibit telling the Manila community’s history since the Spanish colonial days through to more contemporary times.
The islands were a Spanish colony from , and conversos accompanied Spanish adventurers who settled the islands, according to Harvard University history professor Jonathan Goldstein, who wrote a paper on Jewish merchants in Far Eastern ports. In , both were tried and convicted at a Mexico City trial auto-da-fe because the Inquisition was not operating in the Philippines. At least eight other New Christians were also tried and convicted.
Sephardic And Ashkenazic Passover (Pesach) Differences
They attended mass in the embassies of Spain, Portugal and France, but observed Jewish traditions in their homes. These Jews were tolerated because of their financial and mercantile contacts with the rest of Europe, and by their assistance in extending the commercial interests of England throughout the world. Enjoying the more liberal environment prevailing in England and Holland, some Jews gradually revealed themselves as such.
No record has been found of the result of this demarche, but a small congregation of Sephardim was officially recognized by King Charles II in , after the Restoration of the Stuart monarchy. The first Jews who received nobility titles in England also were Sephardim:
Jews in the Ottoman Empire and Turkey. T he history of the Jews in Anatolia started many centuries before the migration of Sephardic Jews. Remnants of Jewish settlement from the 4th century B.C. have been uncovered in the Aegean region. dating from B.C. and traces of other Jewish settlements have been discovered near Bursa, in the.
Apr 8, Benveniste family, Salonika Up until the Holocaust, Greece had a thriving Jewish community dating back to the time of the expulsion from ancient Israel. Salonika was known as the Jerusalem of the Balkans and had a Jewish majority in Ottoman times. During Ottoman rule, the Jews of Greece thrived and coexisted peacefully with their neighbors for the most part.
Under Ottoman control, Jews would experience a golden age that rivaled Muslim Spain. The Greek Jewish community consisted of two groups, the Sephardic Jews who were heirs of the Golden Age of Muslim Spain and Romaniot Jews, who were Hellenized and lived in the area for over 2, years. However, this rich and ancient Jewish community dating back to antiquity was wiped out during the Holocaust.
According to the Kehila Kadosha Ioannina Synagogue and Museum, out of all of the countries occupied by the Nazis, Greece lost the largest percentage of its Jewish population. A larger percentage of Greek Jews were selected to die at the death camps than that of any of the other Jewish communities. Most of them were murdered at Auschwitz-Birkenau. This photo was taken by the Germans on March 25, , the day the Jewish Community of Ioannina was deported.