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In Trani when they studied Talmud

In Trani when they studied Talmud. -Isiah ben Mali, one of the great Talmudic scholars of all time was born in Trani-. By Oreste Spagnuolo, Italy, Italy Magazine In 12th-century Europe, among Jewish scholars who were often held in high esteem by the monarchs, the following saying was popular, “The Law comes from Bari and […]


The Giudecca of Trani, Italy (1000–1550)

A Mediterranean Jewish Quarter and Its Architectural Legacy Mauro Bertagnin, Ilham Khuri-Makdisi, Susan Gilson Miller In: Traditional Dwellings and Settlements Review During the late Middle Ages, the city of Trani in southeastern Italy was home to a significant minority population of Jews. This community reached a highpoint during the thirteenth century, when, under the protection […]


Judaism in Puglia as a Metaphor for Mediterranean Judaism

Fabrizio Lelli, University of Salento The history of Judaism in Puglia is a distillation of thousands of stories of Mediterranean Judaism – fragments that across the millennia collectively comprise a powerful identity. Here are stories of wandering, of links sustained across great distances by faith in ancient traditions, and stories of commercial and cultural exchange […]


History of the Jewish Community in Trani

Francesco Lotoro   The presence of a Jewish community in Puglia can be traced all the way back to the Roman Empire. The origins of the community are disputable; some maintain that the first Jews arrived in Trani after the expulsion from the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon around 1144 C.E., others argue that they […]

Jewish Quarters and Ghettos

A conception of Jewish separation, even isolation, has been central to the study of late-medieval and early-Renaissance cities in Italy — particularly after the sixteenth century, when the prototype of the ghetto was invented in Venice. However, the giudecca of Trani was compact in size and diverse in architectural character and largely open to the […]


The Jewish Community of Naples is centrally located in Via Cappella Vecchia, in the San Ferdinando district of Naples, near Piazza dei Martiri. It is the southernmost Jewish community in Italy – the only one south of Rome – with jurisdiction over the regions of Campania, Molise, Apulia, Basilicata, Calabria and Sicily. While the synagogue is […]


The four synagogues of Trani were converted into churches during the wave of anti-Judaism that followed the fall of Apulia to the Kingdom of Naples. Three hundred of the Jews remaining in the city were forced to convert to Christianity. The four synagogues were renamed Santa Maria in Scolanova, San Leonardo Abate, San Pietro Martire, and […]


The Jewish community of Campania can perhaps be dated as far back as the Greek colonies that established themselves throughout the region, in cities including Pozzuoli, Nola, Bacoli, Marano, Capua, Herculaneum and Stabiae.  Certainly, they began to settle throughout the Mediterranean after Alexander the Great took Judaea.  Historians give the date of 70 B.C. as a […]


Jews lived in Apulia from ancient Roman times until 1541, when they were banished from all of Southern Italy. They arrived after the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem in 70 AD, when emperor Tito brought back 5,000 Jewish war prisoners, who subsequently settled in and around Taranto. The records are sparse over the next two […]