In a message dated 9/24/2002 3:30:34 email@example.com writes:
" So I was wondering if Jews migrated to Germany and Russia
(and many other regions) after the Destruction of the Temple in A.D. 70,
were a large percentage of German Jews of Middle Eastern descent?
Or did many native Germans covert as well to Judaism?"
==Jews first came into Germany with the Romans, perhaps even before the
destruction of the Temple and the subsequent expulsion of Jews >from the
Holy Land in 70CE. The early Jews in Germany came >from what is now Italy.
Before that they lived in the Holy Land. DNA research suggests that the
Jewish men who arrived as slaves, soldiers or traders, took local non-Jewish brides.
The Jewish community in Germany became firmly established (and a world
center for piety and scholarship) with the arrival early in the 10th
century, of the rabbibical Kalonymos family >from Lucca, Italy--reputedly
at the invitation of the HRE emperor. It was not until some centuries
later that Jews expelled >from Germany set up Jewish communities in Eastern
Europe, bringing with them the Judeo-German language later known as
There was a parallel migration of Jews >from Italy and the Balkans to what
later became Austria and Bohemia, Most of these had been exiled >from the
Holy Land and referred to themselves as "Yerushalmi"-->from Jerusalem. The
Jews who migrated >from Constantinople to what later became Bulgaria,
Romania and the Ukraine also included "Bavli" (Babylonian) Jews.
The major non-Semitic adherents of Judaism in Europe were the nomadic
Khazars, a people of Turkic stock, originally >from east of the Volga-Caucasus region, whose kings, and some of whose people converted to
Judaism around the year 730 CE. They did mingle with the arly Jews in
what later became Russia, but their genetic, linguistic and cultutal
contribution to the Jews of Europe is believed to be quite small.
Michael Bernet, New York <mBernet@aol.com>
MODERATOR NOTES: Who needs books or our website when MBernet is awake?
There is still debate on some aspects of the above, the Khazar
factor, for example. Please use private email or GerSig Alternate
for further discussion. MOD 1