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By M. Krummel

In Crafting Jewishness in Medieval England, Miriamne Ara Krummel complicates the idea of the English center a long time as a monolithic age of Christian faith.  Cataloguing and explicating the advanced depictions of semitisms to be present in medieval literature and fabric tradition, this quantity argues that Jews have been constantly found in medieval England, and it's only due to a misreading of the historic list that medieval England has been thought of Judenrein—without Jews.

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Naming the superseded history of a building, especially when that building was once Jewishly owned and is now in the hands of a Christian (“in the king’s hands”), serves as a testimonial to the urges and successes of the colonizing spirit—of replacing the Old (“vetera”) with the New (“nova”). And although buildings can be thought of merely as impersonal objects, the connection of a name to a building has the power to evoke images of a face, of a gesture, of living f lesh. An even later Fine Roll, dated April 18, 1319, rhetorically (re)builds a dispossessed thirteenth-century structure in the fourteenth-century present and, in doing so, links the monarchy to a Jew as Edward I’s “hand” touches “Cok, a Jew”: Grant to Nicholas de Empyton, chaplain, for a fine made by him, of a void place in Briggestrate in the parish of St.

Over time, over centuries, the Jew would be viewed as a complicated figure that would not only fuel the fantasy of what the English yearned to be but also provide an image of what the English had become. The Jew—although still spectral and abject—performed as a familiar. indd 22 12/14/2010 1:21:24 PM CATEGORIES OF RACE: “JUDÆIS NOTRIS ANGLIÆ” AND THE 1275 STATUTE OF JEWRY1 T he medieval impulse to racialize is driven by an unconscious fear about the Jewish Other’s potential to disrupt the Christian community.

In custody of the National Archives. indd 27 12/14/2010 1:21:56 PM C R A F T I N G J E W I S H N E S S I N M E D I E VA L E N G L A N D Figure 6 “Branded and Punished,” Flores Historiarum, England, early fourteenth century. MS. II, folio 183 verso. Photo: British Library. Reproduced by permission of the British Library Board. 13 Aquinas seeks to lend assistance to the Duchess as she makes decisions about Brabant’s Jews. The Duchess wonders over the extent to which she should permit the Jews’ usurious practices and insist upon the badging of the Jews in her kingdom.

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