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Christians and Jews in Angevin England


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The mass suicide and murder of the men, women and children of the Jewish community in York on 16 March 1190 is one of the most scarring events in the history of Anglo-Judaism, and an aspect of England's medieval past which is widely remembered around the world. However, the York massacre was in fact only one of a series of attacks on communities of Jews across England in 1189-90; they were violent expressions of wider new constructs of the nature of Christian and Jewish communities, and the targeted outcries of local townspeople, whose emerging urban politics were enmeshed within the swiftly developing structures of royal government.
This new collection considers the massacre as central to the narrative of English and Jewish history around 1200. Its chapters broaden the contexts within which the narrative is usually considered and explore how a narrative of events in 1190 was built up, both at the time and in following years. They also focus on two main strands: the role of narrative in shaping events and their subsequent perception; and the degree of convivencia between Jews and Christians and consideration of the circumstances and processes through which neighbours became enemies and victims.

Sarah Rees Jones is Senior Lecturer in History, Sethina Watson Lecturer, at the University of York.

Contributors: Sethina Watson, Sarah Rees Jones, Joe Hillaby, Nicholas Vincent, Alan Cooper, Robert C. Stacey, Paul Hyams, Robin R. Mundill, Thomas Roche, Eva de Visscher, Pinchas Roth, Ethan Zadoff, Anna Sapir Abulafia, Heather Blurton, Matthew Mesley, Carlee A. Bradbury, Hannah Johnson, Jeffrey J. Cohen, Anthony Bale


For all scholars of twelfth- and thirteenth-century England there is much to learn from this book. ... The editors and Press are to be congratulated on producing such an impressive and stimulating volume. NORTHERN HISTORY

Through its new approach to old sources and examination of new sources, the collection provides important insights into Christian attitudes toward Jews, as well as moments of violence against Jews and their everyday lives in medieval England. JOURNAL OF CHURCH AND STATE

The volume as a whole makes a significant contribution to our understanding of the history of the Jewish community in medieval England and its relationship with the Christian population and English royal government. CATHOLIC HISTORICAL REVIEW

A substantial addition to the growing corpus of recent work on the Jews of medieval England. ... An impressive volume. ENGLISH HISTORICAL REVIEW

An impressive and rich collection of articles. Each and every one.repays careful attention. The reader gets filled up with a very solid mixture of facts about the inner workings of Jewish life in Angevin England as well as an appetite for more. MEDIEVAL HISTORIES


First Published: 19 Apr 2013
13 Digit ISBN: 9781903153444
Pages: 375
Size: 23.4 x 15.6
Binding: Hardback
Imprint: York Medieval Press
BIC Class: HBLC1

Details updated on 02 May 2016


  • 1  Introduction: The Moment and Memory of the York Massacre of 1190
  • 2  Neighbours and Victims in Twelfth-Century York: A Royal Citadel, the Citizens and the Jews of York
  • 3  Prelude and Postscript to the York Massacre: Attacks in East Anglia and Lincolnshire, 1190
  • 4  William of Newburgh, Josephus and the New Titus
  • 5  1190, William Longbeard and the Crisis of Angevin England
  • 6  The Massacres of 1189-90 and the Origins of the Jewish Exchequer, 1186-1226
  • 7  Faith, Fealty and Jewish 'Infideles' in Twelfth-Century England
  • 8  The 'archa' System and its Legacy after 1194
  • 9  Making Agreements, with or without Jews, in Medieval England and Normandy
  • 10  An Ave Maria in Hebrew: The Transmission of Hebrew Learning from Jewish to Christian Scholars in Medieval England
  • 11  The Talmudic Community of Thirteenth-Century England
  • 12  Notions of Jewish Service in Twelfth and Thirteenth-Century England
  • 13  Egyptian Days: From Passion to Exodus in the Representation of Twelfth-Century Jewish-Christian Relations
  • 14  'De Judaea, Muta et Surda': Jewish Conversion in Gerald of Wales's Life of Saint Remigius
  • 15  Dehumanizing the Jew at the Funeral of the Virgin Mary in the Thirteenth Century [c.1170 - c.1350]
  • 16  Massacre and Memory: Ethics and Method in Recent Scholarship on Jewish Martyrdom
  • 17  The Future of the Jews of York
  • 18  Afterword: Violence, Memory and the Traumatic Middle Ages
  • 19  Bibliography

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