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June 07, 1968 - Image 39

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1968-06-07

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Role of Jewish Wanderers, 1200-1650 Status,
Described in Revised 2 Volumes by Dr. Baron

The University center for
adult education (Wayne, U.
of M. and Eastern Univ.) an-
nounces two unique and inter-
esting 6 week music classes
this summer. A piano master
class and a chamber music
workshop, both directed by the
distinguished concert pianist,
teacher and composer, Robert
The classes meet June 17-
July 26 at the large Rackham
Auditorium. An individual can
attend Mon.-Fri. or pick con-
venient days. Recitals are
planned at the end.
Participating musicians must
have good competence. Ob-
servers are invited at reduced
fees. The workshop may be
Guest teachers for the classes
include Mischakoff, Poole, Kott-
ler, Gordon's and Difiore.
Further information call Mr.
Shulman at 342-1964 or Uni-
versity Center for Adult Edu-
Fees: Piano participants $125.
Observers $50. Chamber music
participants $95. Observers $45.
(All instruments and voice).

of Our Chamber; but as it is
proper, they shall serve Us as
their lord and Roman king.' "
This is one of the cores of ex-
planatory facts regarding the role
of Jews in a period when they


were treated as "demonic" aliens
often enjoying "protection" from
rulers who benefited from the
Jews in their midst.
The tragedies marked by the
ritual murder lie, the bigoted ac-
cusations as in the conviction of
the Jews of Trent in 1475 and the
senseless misrepresentations of
the Passover theme—these and
many similar incidents are re-
corded and their backgrounds ex-
plained. Dr. Baron indicates in
dealing with the horrid charge
that "even the 20th Century wit-
nessed reiterated revivals of this
libel which was ultimately sup-
ported by alleged 'scholarly' evi-
dence in Tsarist Russia and Nazi
The reader will find consider-
able interest in Prof. Baron's ex-
planation of the Ahasverus legend
—the WanderineJew theme. It is
an extensive account of the satiri-
zation element, of "an essentially
medieval irrational theme, reflec-
tive of the tensions built up be-
tween medieval Jews and their
neighbors, germinated in a vast
and, in part, qualitatively high
modern literature which, however,
in contrast to its medieval models,
often treated the tragedy of the
Wandering Jew with fine under-
standing and sympathy."
Treatment of the Jew was not
always marked by gloom and
hostility, Dr. Baron emphasizes. In
Renaissance Italy, he indicates,
"Judeo-Christian relations had
generally become quite friendly."
There were friendly relationships
in other areas. But the wanderer's
role persisted and was marked by
many massacres and by humili-
ations, as the analyses of emerg-
ing intolerance show. Concluding
comments in Vol. XI provide these
valuable observations:
"At the end of the Middle Ages
the European Jew personified, in
his own and his neighbors' minds
even more than in actual reality,
the Wandering Jew of the legend.
Not even friendly observers could
view the Jewish position in any
terms other than those expressed
by Bishop Robert Grosseteste
with reference to the biblical
story of Cain: 'That people is
vagabond because of the dis-
persal, and a fugitive from its
own home, namely Jerusalem;
vagabond because of the un-
certainty of a fixed residence,
and fugitive because of the fear of
death. Yet they have the procla-
mation of the Lord (forbidding)
that they be slain.'
"This heritage of many gener-
ations deepened the 'lachrymose
conception of Jewish history'
which had lone viewed Jewish life
in the dispersion as the effect of
unmitigated divine wrath. It was
further complicated at that time
by the presence, side by side with
professing Jews, of a large class

Jewish Agency's Budget Is Placed at $324 Million

The sum of $16,200,000, $5.714,-
1968-69 budget of the Jewish 290 more than the previous year's
Agency has reached 1,136,000,000 allocation, is earmarked for im-
Israeli pounds, ($324,057,140) ex- migration and absorption.
ceeding that of certain other coun-
L, Pincus, chairman of the
agency executive, said that the
largest part of the income ($28,-
57,410) will be derived from the
"Magbit," the rest from the branch-
es of Youth Aliya, and various
eduational funds.

of Spanish and Portuguese con-
versos, some of whom had be-
come dangerous Jew-baiter s,
while others staunchly, if secretly,
adhered to Judaism. Because of
the Inquisition, many New Chris-
tians likewise had to seize the
wanderer's staff s. Ironically,
however, these very victims of
Spanish - Portuguese h o s i l i t y
turned out to be the chief pio-
neers in reestablishing Jewish
communities in areas from which
Jews had previously been ban-
ished and, ultimately, in opening
up new Jewish settlements where
none had existed before. In this
fashion the people of history,
steadfastly upholding its historico-
ethical monotheism, managed in
the very depths of its suffering
to maintain its unbroken historic
continuity and ultimately to re-
merge, scathed but not subdued,
into the new era of freedom."
The commercial ramifications,
the emergence of merchant guilds
which facilitated the exclusion of
Jews, the status of professional
and merchant classes, the taxpay-
ers' burdens, dependance of Jews
upon the rulers who controlled
their destinites—scores of prob-
lems relating to the economic
issues affecting Jews in the late
Middle Ages are covered in Vol.
The reader learns that there
were few periods of affluence and
Dr. Baron explains that "nowhere,
except in England or in Spain, did
even the Jewish bankers belong to
the wealthiest groups in the popu- lumuummunn umuunnim m unt 0000000 0000000000100numiniimmuuniill unimmi t0000 0000E
lation." -
"Unlike their Christian counter-
parts," Prof. Baron explains, "few
Jewish capitalists, particularly -a:
outside the Iberian Peninsula, felt
inclined to invest much of their
surplus funds in stable landed
estates. Apart from facing various
legal obstacles, they had to con-
tent with the precariousness Of
their possessions vis-a-vis the in-
creasing anti-Jewish agitation and
the conspicuous nature of such
holdings which could not easily
escape the greedy eyes of tax col-
lectors. The adage that 'a city
merchant turns country squire'
Many more items on
did not apply to Jews, whose
sale but not listed here
landed possessions, however large,
never opened to them the ranks of
nobility. Certainly taken as a
whole, the large majority of Euro-
Daytime Group were 25 to $35
NOW $16
pean Jewry belonged to the lower
Wool Knits & Acetates
middle class, with a sprinkling of
Were $39.95 to $50
NOW $24
a few well-to-do families, and a
considerable appendage of poor,
Cocktail and after "5" more than 1/2 OFF
often sustained by communal
Such was the role of the Jewish
wanderers, who suffered from the
Wandering Jew legend while being
Long Gowns were up to $89.95
forced to seek new havens, craving
NOW $25
for protection, evading animosities
Long Gowns were up to $125
NOW $40
and persecution. That era receives
Special group reg. $159 to $300
brilliant anaylsis in Dr. Baron's
'/2 OFF and more
two latest revised volumes of his
"Social and Religious History of
the Jews."





Store Wide Markdowns

National Stamp Exhibition
to Be Held in Jerusalem

IllI mmu mnommmilimmmutim1111011111111111111

A second edition of the revised
and enlarged Volumes XI and XII
of "A Social and Religious History
of the Jews" by Dr. Salo Witt-
mayer Baron has been issued
jointly by Columbia University
Press and the Jewish Publication
Society of America.
Both volumes deal with "Late
Middle Ages and Era of European
Expansion, 1200-1650," Vol. XI
emphasizing matters related to
"Citizen or Alien Conjurer" and
Vol. XII devoted to "Economic
The immensity of this work is
evidenced in the totality of cover-
age of Jewish experiences during
the era under review, the exten-
sive annotations, the threats that
faced Jews when accusations such
as the blood libel and others were
leveled at them.
Dr. Baron provides a vast
amount of data regarding the
libelous ritual murder charges,
the falsehoods related to hatred
inspired by accusations of poi-
sonings and the furies that re-
sulted contagiously; the badges
that were imposed upon Jews to
distinguish them from Christians;
the attitudes of the Catholic
Church, the spread of intolerance
and expulsions from Germanic
Special interest attaches to the
"protection" from monarchs and
to the "serfdom" imposed upon
Jews. Dr. Baron points to a "clear-
cut distinction between Jewish
serfdom and real slavery or vil-
leinage" attested to in medieval
documents and he explains:
"Time and again the kings of
England, Castile or Aragon threat-
ened Jews with the loss of free-
dom in case of disobedience. Even
at the height of legal discrimina-
tion against Iberian Jewry during
the quarter century of 1391-1415,
the •anti-Jewish decree of Jan. 2,
1412, tried to stem Jewish emigra-
tion by warning the would-be
culprits that they would lose all
their property and become 'My
captives forever.' This decree was
repeated, as we recall, by Ferdi-
nand I of Aragon in the following
year. Similar sanctions had been
placed in 1380 upon the illicit
circumcision of Moorish or Tartar
slaves by Jewish masters. Obvi-
ously, not until a court found a
Jew guilty of these 'crimes' was
he to lose the personal liberty
which he had theretofore fully
enjoyed. Equally revealing were
the phrases used by the German
king William in his privilege for
the city of Goslar of 1252. Here
the king promised that 'the city's
Jews shall suffer no undue molest-
ation or captivity from Us, and
We shall protect them amicably
and benevolently as special serfs

Friday, June 7, 1968-39



Shifts (broken sizes)
were $30 to $49.95
Spring. Shifts
were $18.00 to $25.00

NOW $15

JERUSALEM — "Tabira," the
sixth National Stamp Exhibition
NOW $ 9
in Israel, will be held in the na-
tional convention hall here Oct.
NOW $ 3
Summer Shorts were $6.99
8-17. Philatelists from throughout
the world whose interest relates to
the Holy Land and Judaica will at-
NOW $ 6
were $10.00 to $16.00
tend the exhibition.
Israel Yeshayahu, minister of
Slacks were $10.00 to $16.00 NOW $2, $3, $4
posts, is patron of the exhibition,
which is organized by the Jeru-
salem Philatelic Society under the
auspices of the Union of Israeli
Philatelic Societies and the World
Congress of Israel Holy Land and
Judaica Philatelic Societies in co-
operation will be philatelic service
department of the ministry of
Awards will be presented to out-
standing entries.
A set of commemorative stamps
will be issued on the occasion of
"Tabira'." For information, contact
Irvin Girer, commissioner, 27436
Aberdeen, Southfield 48075.

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