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Emet m'Tsiyon

Friday, January 27, 2006

Jews in Jerusalem in 1658 -- as seen by a British visitor

"The situation of the Jews at Jerusalem of late was such that they were unable to subsist without the aid of their brethren in the Diaspora, because the place does not offer the possibility of any work at all, or offers only very little. But their love for the place prompts them to remain there, albeit in great poverty and want. And their brethren in the Diaspora, living among the nations, displayed their desire to support them so that the place should not remain without at least a few members of their nation to watch over it as though it were their possession, and to demonstrate their hope until the full resurrection shall come to pass."
Henry Jessie, 1658
[quoted in Jerusalem, the Eternal Bond: An Unbroken Link with the Jewish People, eds., Ruth Charif and Simcha Raz (Tel Aviv: Don Pubs., 1977), pp 82, 84]

Jessie, a Britisher according to his name, foresees that Jerusalem will revert to the Jews at the time of resurrection, that is, at the End of Days. Interestingly, the Quran too says that the Jews will recover their Land at the End of Days. Nowadays, the Muslims, the Hamas no less than any others, pretend not to know what the Quran says in favor of Jewish rights in the Land.

Henry Laurens, author of a meretricious history of Israel since the time of Napoleon --La Question de Palestine-- insinuated in his book that the Jews of the world were not interested in Israel, in Jerusalem, in Zion, before Napoleon issued his call for Jews to aid him in return for which he would aid the restoration of the Jewish state. But this report belies Laurens. Jews lived in Jerusalem and received aid from Jews in the Diaspora more than a century before Napoleon issued his proclamation to the Jews.
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Coming: Jewish life in Jerusalem, Poems of Zion


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