From the very first moment when Christianity emerged as a different faith, a course of mutual hatred and hidden or open enmity began between Jews and Christians. The reason for this enmity is the theological and doctrinal controversies of Christians, as well as the feelings of grudge and revenge which never dissapeared against the Jews who played a role in the murder of Jesus Christ. As for Jews who believed that the ultimate and privileged salvation was only for their “superior" races and did not accept that all people were equal, it was already in their nature to humiliate other nations and to bear hostility towards them. However, perhaps the main reason for the hostility between the supporters of both religions may not be belief differences, but rather similarities. Because Christianity came out of Judaism, and both religions had many common points, especially monotheism. Therefore, they were rivals of each other in order to increase the number of their supporters and to make other people accept their own religions. In this process, on the one hand, both sides engaged in propaganda activities to spread their beliefs, and on the other hand, they were worried about the possibility of convincing of any of their own religious fellows by the other side. As a result, Christians who quickly found supporters for themselves and whose numbers increased in medieval Europe, prevailed with the support of the Roman State against the politically weakened Jews in aforesaid competition. Even though Jews, who had to live among Christians as a small minority, had some rights, they were almost always insulted and exposed to antisemitic attacks. In relevant section of Las Siete Partidas, or formerly named as Libro de las Leyes (Book of Laws), issued in 1265 by the Castilian King Alfonso X the rights of the jews, and limits of this rights, rules which they had to obey and the penalties appropriate for those who ignore the laws are mentioned. In this study, the general situation of Jews in medieval Europe and their legal status according to the Book of Laws in question are discussed.


Medieval, Christians, Jews, Antisemitism, Las Siete Partidas.

Author : Emrullah KALELİ
Number of pages: 577-592
Full text:
Turkish Studies - Historical Analysis
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