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Photographer's Note

Rest of the old jewish quartier in Tarragona.

Spanish Jews, known as Shepardi, are said to have arrived in the Iberian peninsula in the sixth century BC, after the destruction of the first temple.

Under Moorish control Spain became the centre of the Jewish world and ushered in the golden age of Jewish history. Jews were given the opportunity to participate in the Moorish administration.

By the twelfth century, the Jewish population of Spain was greater than in all other European countries combined.

Two months after defeating the last Muslim kingdom at Granada, the catholic monarchs signed a decree expelling all Jews from Spain. In 1495 a spanish princess was married to to King Manuel of Portugal. One of the conditions of the marriage was to expell all Jews from Portugal; Navarra followed in 1498. Of the quarter of a million Jews living in Spain, up to 100,000 fled, the remainder choosing conversion. By the year 1500 there were no openly practicing Jews on the Iberian peninsula. Shepardic communities were established in Italy, Morocco and the Ottoman Empire.

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Additional Photos by Knut Thieme (HOBO) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 837 W: 29 N: 1058] (5276)
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