Wednesday; Hx: Sephardic Russian Siberia Jew-Rhine-austria-Gaul-Balvaria Ashkenazi jews hid as early as 1860s in Kobe, jap as Russian-Europeans fought Jews killing nonjews for jewish sacrifices; innocent Koreans and non-Zionist jews were targetted as Jews vs Russian Catholics led to ww1/ww2/jap invasion of Korea/genocide of KoreansWednesday; Heritage. Innocent Survivors; 1916 Russian Catholics deporting Jews to Siberia stirs American Jews - the very Russian Catholics combatting Jews that kill nonjews for sacrifices ; Cathokic vs Jews led to Hitler Nazi & Meiji Jap Militia of ww1/ww2 /destruction of Korea-Manchu China.

The Grand Duchy of the Lower Rhine (GermanGroßherzogtum Niederrhein), or simply known as the Lower Rhine Province(GermanProvinz Niederrhein) was a province of the Kingdom of Prussia and existed from 1815 to 1822.
The province was created after the Congress of Vienna in 1815 where Frederick William III was given the Rhineland and with it the title of Grand Duke of the Lower Rhine. This allowed Prussia to consolidate its Rhenish territories held since 1803, such as theElectorate of TrierCounty of ManderscheidPrincipality of Stavelot-Malmedy, the previously Free Imperial City of Aachen, most of thePalatinate region, parts of Luxembourg and Limburg, as well as a few other small territories. On 22 April 1816, these territories were combined to form the Grand Duchy of the Lower Rhine, with the provincial capital situated in Koblenz.
On 22 June 1822, by order of the Prussian cabinet, this province was fused with the neighbouring Province of Jülich-Cleves-Berg to form the Rhine Province.

Amsterdam (English /ˈæmstərdæm/Dutch: [ˌɑmstərˈdɑm] ( listen)) is thecapital and most populous city of the Netherlands. Its status as the Dutch capital is mandated by the Constitution of the Netherlands[5] though it is not the seat of the Dutch government, which is at The Hague.[6]Amsterdam has a population of 805,166 within the city-proper, 1,563,141 in the urban region and 2,349,870 in the greater metropolitan area.[4][7]The city is located in the province of North Holland in the west of the country. It comprises much of the northern part of the Randstad, one of the larger conurbations in Europe, with a population of approximately 7 million.[8]
Amsterdam's name derives from Amstelredamme,[9] indicative of the city's origin as a dam of the river Amstel. Originating as a small fishing village in the late 12th century, Amsterdam became one of the most important ports in the world during the Dutch Golden Age, a result of its innovative developments in trade. During that time, the city was the leading center for finance and diamonds.[10] In the 19th and 20th centuries, the city expanded, and many new neighborhoods and suburbs were planned and built. The 17th-century canals of Amsterdam and the 19–20th centuryDefence Line of Amsterdam are on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
As the commercial capital of the Netherlands and one of the top financial centres in Europe, Amsterdam is considered an alpha world city by theGlobalization and World Cities (GaWC) study group. The city is also the cultural capital of the Netherlands.[11] Many large Dutch institutions have their headquarters there, and 7 of the world's top 500 companies, including Philips and ING, are based in the city.[12] In 2012, Amsterdam was ranked 2nd best city to live by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU)[13] and 12th globally on quality of living by Mercer.[14] The city was previously ranked 3rd in innovation by 2thinknow in the Innovation Cities Index 2009.[15]
The Amsterdam Stock Exchange, the oldest stock exchange in the world, is located in the city center. Amsterdam's main attractions, including itshistoric canals, the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh MuseumStedelijk MuseumHermitage AmsterdamAnne Frank HouseAmsterdam Museum, its red-light district, and its many cannabis coffee shops draw more than 3.66 million international visitors annually.

The Congress of Vienna (GermanWiener Kongress) was a conference of ambassadors of European stateschaired by Austrian statesman Klemens Wenzel von Metternich, and held in Vienna from September 1814 to June 1815.[1] The objective of the Congress was to settle the many issues arising from the French Revolutionary Wars, the Napoleonic Wars, and the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire.
This objective resulted in the redrawing of the continent's political map, establishing the boundaries ofFrance, the Duchy of Warsaw, the Netherlands, the states of the Rhine, the German Kingdom of Saxony, and various Italian territories, and the creation ofspheres of influence through which AustriaBritain, France and Russia brokered local and regional problems. The Congress of Vienna was the first of a series of international meetings that came to be known as the Concert of Europe, which was an attempt to forge a peaceful balance of power in Europe, and served as a model for later organizations such as the League of Nations and United Nations.
Frontispiece of the Acts of the Congress of Vienna.
The immediate background was Napoleonic France's defeat andsurrender in May 1814, which brought an end to twenty-five years of nearly continuous war. Negotiations continued despite the outbreak of fighting triggered by Napoleon's dramatic return from exile and resumption of power in France during the Hundred Days of March–July 1815. The Congress's "Final Act" was signed nine days before his final defeat atWaterloo on 18 June 1815.
In a technical sense, the "Congress of Vienna" was not properly a Congress: it never met in plenary session, and most of the discussions occurred in informal, face-to-face, sessions among the Great Powers of Austria, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and sometimes Prussia, with limited or no participation by other delegates. On the other hand, the Congress was the first occasion in history where, on a continental scale, national representatives came together to formulate treaties, instead of relying mostly on messengers and messages between the several capitals. The Congress of Vienna settlement, despite later changes, formed the framework for European international politics until the outbreak of the First World War in 1914.

New Amsterdam (DutchNieuw-Amsterdam) was a 17th-century Dutch settlement established at the southern tip of Manhattan Island and served as seat of the colonial government in New Netherland. It was renamed New York in 1665 in honor of the then Duke of York (later James II of England) after English forces seized control of Manhattan Island, along with the rest of the Dutch colony.
The settlement, outside of Fort Amsterdam on Manhattan Island in the New Netherland territory (1614–1664), was situated between 38 and 42 degrees latitude and was a provincial extension of the Dutch Republic as of 1624. Situated on the strategic, fortifiable southern tip of the island of Manhattan, the fort was meant to defend the Dutch West India Company's fur trade operations in the North River (Hudson River). Fort Amsterdam was designated the capital of the province in 1625.
The 1625 date of the founding of New Amsterdam is now commemorated in the official Seal of New York City. (Formerly, the year on the seal was 1664, the year of the provisional Articles of Transfer, ensuring New Netherlanders that they "shall keep and enjoy the liberty of their consciences in religion", negotiated with the English by Pieter Stuyvesantand his council).
Long considered a dysfunctional trading post by the English who took it over, recent historical research has found that the city indeed left its cultural marks on later New York, and by extension the United States.

Adolphe, Grand Duke of Luxembourg (Adolf Wilhelm August Karl Friedrich) (24 July 1817 – 17 November 1905) was the first monarch of Luxembourg from the House of Nassau-Weilburg.

He was a son of William, Duke of Nassau (1792–1839) and his first wifePrincess Louise of Saxe-Hildburghausen. Adolphe's half-sister, Sophia of Nassau, was the wife of Oscar II of Sweden.

Duke of Nassau[edit]

Adolph became Duke of Nassau in August 1839, after the death of his father.Wiesbaden had by this time become the capital of the Duchy and Adolph took up residence in the newly constructed Stadtschloss in 1841. On 4 March 1848 he consented to the population of Nassau's 9 "Demands of the Nassauers". A few years later, however, he revoked his liberal views and took a strongly conservative and reactionary course. In general, though, he was seen as a popular ruler. He supported the Austrian Empire in the Austro-Prussian War of 1866. After Austria's defeat, Nassau was annexed to theKingdom of Prussia and he lost his throne on 20 September 1866.

Grand Duke of Luxembourg[edit]

In 1879, Adolphe's niece Emma of Waldeck and Pyrmont, the daughter of another of his half-sisters, married William III, King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg. In 1890, their only daughter Wilhelminasucceeded on his death without surviving male issue to the Dutch throne, but was excluded from the succession to Luxembourg by the Salic Law. The Grand Duchy, which had been linked to the Netherlands in personal unionsince 1815, passed to Adolphe in accordance with the Nassau Family Pact. Adolphe was King-Grand Duke William III's 17th cousin once removed (through male line), which is the greatest distance among two consecutive rulers in history.
He had, in fact, taken over the Regency of Luxembourg for a short time during William III's illness.
In any case, as he was already 73 years old and knew little of Luxembourgish politics, he left his hands off the day-to-day governing. The prime minister Paul Eyschen, in office since 1888, took care of the affairs of state, and this created a tradition that the ruler would remain absent from the politics of the day. In Adolphe appointed his son William as Lieutenant-Representative. In 1905 he died at Hohenburg and in 1953 was buried in the crypt of the Weilburg castle chapel.

Marriage and family[edit]

On 31 January 1844, Adolphe married firstly in St. Petersburg Grand Duchess Elizabeth Mikhailovna of Russia, niece ofEmperor Nicholas I of Russia. She died less than a year afterwards giving birth to a stillborn daughter. Adolphe built the Russian Orthodox Church of Saint Elizabeth 1847 to 1855 as her funeral church.
On 23 April 1851, he remarried in Dessau Princess Adelheid-Marie of Anhalt-Dessau. They had five children, of whom only two lived to the age of eighteen and became prince and princess of Luxembourg:
In 1892, Grand Duke Adolphe conferred the hereditary title Count of Wisborg on his Swedish nephew, Oscar, who had lost his Swedish titles after marrying without his father's approval. Wisborg (also spelled Visborg) was the old castle in the city of Visby within Prince Oscar's lost Dukedom of Gotland, but the title itself was created in the nobility of Luxembourg.


On April 20, 1842, the AdelsvereinSociety for the Protection of German Immigrants in Texas, was organized in the Grand Duke's castle at Biebrich on the Rhine. He was named the Protector of the organization. The Verein was responsible for the large emigration of Germans to Texas in the 19th Century, and on January 9, 1843, established the 4,428 acre Nassau Plantation in Fayette County, Texas and named it after the Grand Duke.[1][2]

Titles and styles[edit]

  • 24 July 1817 – 20 August 1839: His Highness The Hereditary Duke of Nassau[3]
  • 20 August 1839 – 20 September 1866: His Highness The Duke of Nassau[3]
  • 20 September 1866 – 23 November 1890: His Highness Adolphe, Duke of Nassau
  • 23 November 1890 – 17 November 1905: His Royal Highness The Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Duke of Nassau[4]

Holy Roman Empire Upper Rhenish Circle (1500–1806) of the Holy Roman Empire

Family Tree[edit]

Complied from Wikipedia and:[1]

For ancestors of the
House of Nassau-Weilburg
(House of Nassau family tree)'
John III
(1441 +1480)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
Blason Philippe de Nassau-Sarrebrück (selon Gelre).svg
Louis I
(1473 +1523)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
Philip III
(1504 +1559)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
(1537 +1593)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
Philip IV
(1542 +1602)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
in Saarbrucken
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
Blason Philippe de Nassau-Sarrebrück (selon Gelre).svg
Louis II
(1565 +1627)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
in Ottweiler
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
in Weilburg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
John Casimir
(1577 +1602)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
in Gleiberg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
William Louis
(1590 +1640)
Count of Nassau-Saarbrücken
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
Blason Nassau-Weilbourg-Saarbrucken.svg
(1603 +1677)
Count of Nassau-Idstein
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
Counts of Nassau-Idstein
Ernest Casimir
(1607 +1655)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
John Louis
(1625 +1690)
Count of Nassau-Ottweiler
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
ext. 1728
Gustav Adolph
(1632 +1677)
Count of Nassau-Saarbrücken
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
ext. 1723
(1635 +1702)
Count & Prince of Nassau-Usingen
Princely crown.svg
ext. 1816
(1640 +1675)
Count of Nassau-Weilburg
Rangkronen-Fig. 18.svg
John Ernst
(1664 +1719)
Count & Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
Princely crown.svg
Charles August
(1685 +1753)
Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
Princely crown.svg
Charles Ernst
Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
Princely crown.svg
Charles Christian
(1735 +1788)
Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
Princely crown.svg
Princess Carolina of Orange-Nassau
(1743 +1787)
Frederick William
(1768 +1816)
Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
Princely crown.svg
(1792 +1839)
Duke of Nassau
Royal Crown of the Netherlands (Heraldic).svg
Blason Guillaume, duc de Nassau (1816-1839).svg
(1817 +1905)
Duke of Nassau 1839-1866
Grand Duke of Luxembourg
Crown of Luxembourg.pngCrown of Luxembourg.png
CoA Grand Duke of Luxembourg 1890-1898.svgCoA Grand Duke of Luxembourg 1898-2000.svg
Grand Ducal Family of Luxembourg

Nassau-Usingen was a county of the Holy Roman Empire in the Upper Rhenish Circle that became a principality in 1688.
The origin of the county lies in the medieval county of Weilnau that was acquired by the counts of Nassau-Weilburg in 1602. That county was divided in 1629 into the lines of Nassau-WeilburgNassau-Idstein and Nassau-Saarbrücken that was divided only 30 years later in 1659.
The emerging counties were Nassau-Saarbrücken, Nassau-Ottweiler and Nassau-Usingen. At the beginning of the 18th century 3 of the Nassau lines died out and Nassau-Usingen became their successor (1721 Nassau-Idstein, 1723 Nassau-Ottweiler und 1728 Nassau-Saarbrücken). In 1735 Nassau-Usingen was divided again into Nassau-Usingen and Nassau-Saarbrücken. In 1797 Nassau-Usingen inherited Nassau-Saarbrücken.
On July 17, 1806 the counties of Nassau-Usingen and Nassau-Weilburg joined the Confederation of the Rhine. Under pressure from Napoleon both counties merged to become the Duchy of Nassau on August 30, 1806 under joint rule of Prince Frederick August of Nassau-Usingen and his younger cousin Prince Frederick William of Nassau-Weilburg. As Frederick August had no heirs he agreed that Frederick William should become sole ruler after his death. However Frederick William died from a fall on the stairs at Weilburg Castle on 9 January 1816 and it was his son William who became duke of a unified Nassau.

Sukjong of Joseon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
King Sukjong
King of Joseon
Portrait of King Sukjong
PredecessorKing Hyeonjong
SuccessorKing Gyeongjong
SpouseQueen Ingyeong
Queen Inhyeon
Queen Inwon
Royal Noble Consort Jang, concubine
Royal Noble Consort Suk, concubine
Royal Noble Consort Myeong
Royal Noble Consort Yeong, concubine
Gwi-in Kim, concubine
So-ui Yu, concubine
So-ui Choe, concubine
King Gyeongjong of Joseon
Prince Seongsu
Prince Yeongsu
King Yeongjo of Joseon
unnamed son
Prince Yeonryeong
unknown son
unnamed daughter
unnamed daughter
HouseHouse of Yi
FatherKing Hyeonjong of Joseon
MotherQueen Myeongsong of the Cheongpung Kim clan
Born8 September 1661
Changdeok PalaceKorea
GoyangGyeonggi Province,Korea
BurialMyeongreung, Goyang
Sukjong of Joseon
Revised RomanizationSukjong
Birth name
Revised RomanizationI Sun
McCune–ReischauerYi Sun
Sukjong (8 September 1661 – 13 July 1720) was the 19th king of the Joseon Dynasty of Korea from 1674 to 1720. A skilled politician, he caused multiple changes of political alliance throughout his reign, switching between the Southerner, Westerner, Soron, and Noron political factions.


King Sukjong was born on 8 September (15th day of the 8th lunar month) 1661 to King Hyeonjong and Queen Myeongseong at Changdeok Palace. His given name was Yi Sun. He became the Crown Prince Myeongbo in 1667 at age 6, and in 1674, at age 14, he became the 19th ruler of the Joseon Dynasty.
King Sukjong was a brilliant politician, but his reign was marked by some of the most intense factional fights in Joseon dynasty. Sukjong frequently replaced faction in power with another one to strengthen the royal authority. With each change of government, which was called hwanguk (Hangul환국;Hanja換局), literally turn of the state, the losing faction was completely driven out of politics with executions and exiles. Nevertheless, the chaotic changes of government did not affect the general populace significantly, and his reign is considered one of more prosperous times.

Factional Fightings[edit]

In the early years of Sukjong's reign, the Southern faction and Western faction clashed over the Royal Funeral Dispute, a seemingly minor issue regarding the mourning period for Queen Insun. The Southern faction claimed that the mourning period should last one year while the Western faction argued for a nine-month mourning period. A one-year mourning period meant that Hyojong of Joseon was considered the eldest son while 9-month period would suggest that Hyojong was considered not the eldest son, following the rules that governed the yangban class. In other words, the Western faction viewed the royal family as the first of the yangban class rather than a separate class for which different rules applied. The two factions were also in conflict over the issue of fighting the Qing Dynasty, which was considered barbaric country (as opposed to Ming Dynasty) that threatened Joseon's national security. The Southern faction, led by Huh Jeok and Yoon Hyu, supported war against Qing while Western factions wanted to focus first on improving domestic conditions.
Sukjong at first sided with the Southern faction, but in 1680, Huh Jeok was accused of treason by Western faction, which led to the execution of Huh Jeok and Yoon Hyu and purging of the Southern faction. This incident is called Kyungshin hwanguk (경신환국). Now in power, the Western faction split into the Noron (Old Learning) faction, led by Song Siyeol, and the Soron (New Learning) faction, led by Yoon Jeung. After nine years in power, the Noron collapsed when Sukjong deposed Queen Inhyeon, who was supported by the Western faction, and named Consort Hui of Jang clan (also called Consort Jang or Jang Hui-bin) as the new queen. She is widely thought to be one of the most beautiful women in Joseon Dynasty, and her beauty was mentioned in the Annals. The Western faction angered Sukjong when it opposed the naming of Consort Jang's son as crown prince. The Southern faction, who supported Consort Jang and her son, regained power and drove out Western faction, executing Song Siyeol in revenge. This is called Gisa hwangguk (기사환국).
Five years later in 1694, the Southern faction was planning another purge of the Western faction, accusing them of conspiracy to reinstate the deposed Queen Inhyeon, when Sukjong began to regret deposing Queen Inhyeon and favorConsort Suk of Choe clan (Consort Choe), an ally of Queen Inhyeon and the Noron faction. Angry with the Southern faction's attempt to purge Westerners, Sukjong abruptly turned around to purge Southerners and brought the Western faction back in power. The Southern faction would never recover from this blow, also called Gapsul hwanguk (갑술환국). Sukjong demoted Queen Jang to Consort Jang and reinstated Queen Inhyeon. Consort Jang was eventually executed (with poison) for cursing Queen Inhyeon after the latter died. The Soron faction supported Crown Prince Hwiso (Yi Yun), Consort Jang's son, while the Noron faction supported Consort Choe's son, Prince Yeonying (Yi Geum, later to becomeYeongjo of Joseon). Late Queen Inhyeon and newly installed Queen Inwon were childless.
In 1718, Sukjong allowed the crown prince, soon to be Gyeongjong of Joseon, to rule the country as regent,and went to live with his Consort Choe during her last days of life. Sukjong died in 1720 supposedly after telling Yi Yi-myoung to nameYeoning-geum as Gyeongjong's heir, but in absence of a histriographer or recorder. This will would lead to yet another purge which led to the execution of four Noron leaders in 1721, followed by another purge with the executions of eight Noron people in 1722.
Sukjong made tax system reform (大同法), promoted the use of coin (Korean mun) and allowed the middle class and children of concubines to advance to higher governmental positions in provinces. In 1712, Sukjong's government worked with the Qing Dynasty in China to define the national borders between the two countries at the Yalu and Tumen Rivers. The Japanese government recognized Ulleung Island and Liancourt Rocks as Joseon's territory in 1696.
Sukjong's reign also saw agricultural development of far provinces and increased cultural activities including publications. He died after reigning for 46 years in 1720 at age 60. He was buried in Myeongreung (명릉) in Gyeonggi province, GoyangCity inside Western Five Royal Graves (西五陵 서오릉 seooreung).


  1. Queen Ingyeong of the Kim clan (인경왕후 김씨)
  2. Queen Inhyeon of the Yeoheung Min clan (인현왕후 민씨)
  3. Queen Inwon of the Gyeongju Kim clan (인원왕후 김씨)
  4. Royal Noble Consort Hui of the Indong Jang clan (희빈 장씨)
  5. Royal Noble Consort Suk of the Haeju Choe clan (숙빈 최씨)
  6. Royal Noble Consort Myeong of the Miryang Park clan (명빈 박씨)
  7. Royal Noble Consort Yeong of the Kim clan (영빈 김씨)
  8. Gwi-in Kim (귀인 김씨)
  9. So-ui Yu (소의 유씨)
  10. So-ui Choe (소의 최씨)
  1. Crown Prince Hwiso, Yi Yun (왕세자 1688-1724) to become Gyeongjong of Joseon, only known son of Royal Noble Consort Hui of the Indong Jang clan.
  2. Prince Seongsu (성수왕자), (disputed) son of Royal Noble Consort Hui of the Indong Jang clan.
  3. Prince Yeongsoo (영수왕자), son of Royal Noble Consort Suk of the Haeju Choe clan.
  4. Prince Yeoning, Yi Geum (연잉군 1694–1776), to become Yeongjo of Joseon, son of Royal Noble Consort Suk of the Haegu Choe clan.
  5. An unnamed (disputed)son of Royal Noble Consort Suk of the Haegu Choe clan.
  6. Prince Yeonryeong, Yi Hwon (연령군, 1699–1719), the only son of Royal Noble Consort Myeong of the Miryang Park clan.
  7. 3 unnamed daughters of Queen Ingyeong of the Kim clan.

Sukjong's consorts of note[edit]

Royal Noble Consort Myeong of the Miryang Park clan[edit]

Very little is known about her. She was the daughter of Park Hyo-geon (Hangul: 박효건, Hanja: 朴孝建), a yangban of the Miryang Park clan (Hangul: 밀양 박씨, Hanja: 密陽 朴氏), and entered the royal court as a gungnyeo. In 1698, on the fourth day of the eleventh month of the twenty-fourth year of the reign of King Sukjong, she was made a royal concubine with the rank of Suk-won. In 1699, on the twenty-third day of the tenth month in the twenty-fifth year of King Sukjong's reign, she was elevated to the rank of Suk-ui after giving birth to a son, Yi Hwon (Prince Yeonryeong), and in 1702, on the eighteenth day of the tenth month in the twenty-eighth year of King Sukjong's reign, she was elevated to the rank ofMyeong-bin. (Myo 명 - meaning "bright") She died in 1703, on the fifteenth day of the seventh month in the twenty-ninth year of King Sukjong's reign.
It was said that Prince Yeonryeong was King Sukjong's favorite son. He died in 1719, 1 year before Sukjong's death in 1720. King Sukjong was greatly disturbed and saddened by the news. He wanted to attend to the funeral details himself, but couldn't because he was very ill and officials opposed, fearing it'd worsen his health. It was sad that Prince Yeonryeong didn't have any children, so Sukjong adopted another prince to be Prince Yeonryeong's "adopted child" to continue the line. Prince Yeonryeong was buried next to his mother Lady Park Myeongbin.

Lady Park (Myeong-bin)

There are no known records about her except that she was a daughter of nobility (yangban). She had one son, Prince Yeun-rueng.

Taejong of Joseon
Statutes at Royal Tomb of King Taejong of Joseon
ReignNovember 13, 1400 – September 18, 1418
BornMay 18, 1367
DiedMay 10, 1422 (aged 54)
Place of deathChanggyeonggung
PredecessorJeongjong of Joseon
SuccessorSejong of Joseon
ConsortQueen Wongyeong
IssueSejong of Joseon
Royal HouseHouse of Yi
FatherTaejo of Joseon
MotherQueen Sinui
Taejong of Joseon
Revised RomanizationTaejong
Birth name
Revised RomanizationI Bang-won
McCune–ReischauerYi Pangwŏn
Monarchs of Korea
Joseon Dynasty
  1. Taejo 1392–1398
  2. Jeongjong 1398–1400
  3. Taejong 1400–1418
  4. Sejong the Great 1418–1450
  5. Munjong 1450–1452
  6. Danjong 1452–1455
  7. Sejo 1455–1468
  8. Yejong 1468–1469
  9. Seongjong 1469–1494
  10. Yeonsangun 1494–1506
  11. Jungjong 1506–1544
  12. Injong 1544–1545
  13. Myeongjong 1545–1567
  14. Seonjo 1567–1608
  15. Gwanghaegun 1608–1623
  16. Injo 1623–1649
  17. Hyojong 1649–1659
  18. Hyeonjong 1659–1674
  19. Sukjong 1674–1720
  20. Gyeongjong 1720–1724
  21. Yeongjo 1724–1776
  22. Jeongjo 1776–1800
  23. Sunjo 1800–1834
  24. Heonjong 1834–1849
  25. Cheoljong 1849–1863
  26. Gojong 1863–1907
  27. Sunjong 1907–1910

King Taejong (May 18, 1367 – May 10, 1422) was the third king of theJoseon Dynasty in Korea and the father of King Sejong the Great.


Founding of Joseon[edit]

He was born as Yi Bang-won in 1367 as the fifth son of King Taejo, and was qualified as an official of Goryeo Dynasty in 1382. During his early days, he helped his father to extend his support with the citizenry and many influential figures of the government. Taejong helped his father found a new dynasty by assassinating powerful officials such as Jeong Mong-ju, who remained loyal to the Goryeo dynasty.

Strife of Princes[edit]

In 1392, he helped his father to overthrow Goryeo and establish a new dynasty, Joseon. He expected to be appointed as the successor to the throne for he contributed most to the founding of Joseon, but his father Taejo and prime minister Jeong Dojeon favored Taejo's eighth son and Yi Bangwon's half-brother (second son of Queen Sindeok) Yi Bangseok as the crown prince in 1392. This conflict arose chiefly because Jeong Dojeon, who shaped and laid down ideological, institutional, and legal foundations of the new dynasty more than anyone else, saw Joseon as a kingdom led by ministers appointed by the king while Yi Bangwon wanted to establish the absolute monarchy ruled directly by the king. Both sides were well aware of each other's great animosity and were getting ready to strike first. After the sudden death of Queen Sindeok, and while King Taejo was still in mourning for his second wife, Yi Bang-won struck first by raiding the palace and killed Jeong Do-jeon and his supporters as well as Queen Sindeok's two sons including the crown prince in 1398. This incident became known as the First Strife of Princes.
Aghast at the fact that his sons were willing to kill each other for the crown, and psychologically exhausted from the death of his second wife, King Taejo abdicated and immediately crowned his second son Yi Bang-gwa, or King Jeongjong, as the new ruler. One of King Jeongjong's first acts as monarch was to revert the capital to Gaeseong, where he is believed to have been considerably more comfortable. Yet Yi Bangwon retained real power and was soon in conflict with his disgruntled older brother Yi Bang-gan, who also yearned for power. In 1400, General Bak Po, who was disappointed by Yi Bangwon for not rewarding him enough for his action in the First Strife of Princes, allied with Bangwon's older brother Yi Bang-gan (Prince Hoean) and rebelled against him in what to be known as the Second Strife of Princes. Yi Bangwon successfully defeated his brother's forces, then executed Bak Po and sent Yi Bang-gan into exile. King Jeongjong, who was afraid of his powerful brother, named Yi Bangwon as crown prince and abdicated in the same year. Yi Bangwon assumed the throne of Joseon at long last as King Taejong, the third king of Joseon.

Consolidation of royal power[edit]

sign of Taejong of Joseon
In the beginning of Taejong's reign, the Grand King Former, Taejo, refused to relinquish the royal seal that signified the legitimacy of any king's rule. Taejong began to initiate policies he believed would prove his qualification to rule. One of his first acts as king was to abolish the privilege enjoyed by the upper echelons of government and the aristocracy to maintain private armies. His revoking of such rights to field independent forces effectively severed their ability to muster large-scale revolts, and drastically increased the number of men employed in the national military. Taejong's next act as king was to revise the existing legislation concerning the taxation of land ownership and the recording of state of subjects. With the discovery of previously hidden land, national income increased twofold.
He also initiated the system of hopae, an early form of identification recording the bearer's name and residence, used to control the movement of people.[1] He also set a big drum in front of his court, so that the common people, when they had some problems, could come to palace and consult the king.[citation needed]

Absolute monarchy[edit]

In addition, he created a strong central government and an absolute monarchy. In 1399, Taejong had played an influential role in scrapping the Dopyeong Assembly, a council of the old government administration that held a monopoly in court power during the waning years of the Goryeo Dynasty, in favor of the State Council of Joseon (의정부), a new branch of central administration that revolved around the king and his edicts. After passing the subject documentation and taxation legislation, King Taejong issued a new decree in which all decisions passed by the State Council could only come into effect with the approval of the king. This ended the custom of court ministers and advisors making decisions through debate and negotiations amongst themselves, and thus brought the royal power to new heights. Shortly thereafter, Taejong installed an office, known as the Sinmun Office, to hear cases in which aggrieved subjects felt that they had been exploited or treated unjustly by government officials or aristocrats.
However, Taejong kept Jeong Dojeon's reforms intact for the most part. He promoted Confucianism, which was more like political philosophy rather than a religion, thus demoting Buddhism, which was far from daily living and decayed from the power given by Goryeo kings back then. He closed many temples that were established by Goryeo kings, and seized their large possessions and added them to the national treasury. Meanwhile, he honored Jeong Mon-ju with the posthumous title of Chief State Councillor (equivalent to Prime Minister) even though it was he who assassinated Jeong – leading to irony of history, in which Jeong Dojeon was vilified throughout the Joseon dynasty while Jeong Mong-ju was honored despite his opposition to its birth.
In foreign policy, he was a straight hardliner—he attacked the Jurchens on the northern border and Japanese pirates on the southern coast. Taejong is also known for being responsible for the Oei Invasion of Tsushima Island in 1419. He also promoted publications, commerce and education. He also founded and encouraged Uigeumbu, the royal guard and secret police at the same time. In 1418, he abdicated and gave the throne to Sejong the Great of Joseon but continued to rule with iron fist, deciding important matters and executing Sejong's father-in-law Shim On and Shim's brother.[citation needed]
Taejong executed or exiled many of his supporters who helped him ascend on the throne in order to strengthen the royal authority. To limit influence of in-laws, he also killed all four brothers of his Queen Won-gyeong and his son Sejong's in-laws. Taejong remains a controversial figure who killed many of his rivals (including Jeong Mong-ju and Jeong Do-jeon) and relatives to gain power and yet ruled effectively to improve the populace's lives, strengthen national defense, and lay down a solid foundations for his successor Sejong's rule. Taejong was known for his passion for hunting, considered unseemly in a ruler.




  • Father: King Taejo (태조)
  • Mother: Queen Shinui of the Anbyeon Han clan (신의왕후 한씨, September 1337-September 12, 1391)
  • Consorts and their Respective Issue:
  1. Queen Wongyeong of the Yeoheung Min clan (원경왕후 민씨, July 11, 1365-July 10, 1420)[2]
    1. 3 unnamed sons
    2. Yi Je, the Grand Prince Yangnyeong (이제 양녕대군, 1394-September 7, 1462), 4th son[3]
    3. Yi Bo, the Grand Prince Hyoryeong (이보 효령대군, 1396–1486), 5th son
    4. Yi Do, the Grand Prince Chungnyeong (이도 충녕대군), 6th son - Sejong the Great of Joseon
    5. Yi Jong, the Grand Prince Seongnyeong (이종 성녕대군, July 9, 1405–February 4, 1418), 7th son
      1. Yi Yong, the Grand Prince Anpyeong (이용 안평대군, 1418–October 18, 1453), 1st adopted son; his older brother Sejong's 3rd son
      2. Yi Ui, the Prince Woncheon (이의 원천군, 1423-1476), 2nd adopted son; his older brother Prince Hyoryeong's 6th son
    6. Princess Jeongsun (정순공주, 1385–1460), 1st daughter[4]
    7. Princess Gyeongjeong (경정공주, ?–1455),[5] 2nd daughter[6]
    8. Princess Gyeongan (경안공주, 1393–1415), 3rd daughter[7]
    9. Princess Jeongseon (정선공주, 1404–January 25, 1424), 4th daughter[8]
  2. Royal Concubine Hyo of the Cheongpung Kim clan (효빈 김씨, ?–1454)[9][10]
    1. Yi Bi, the Prince Gyeongnyeong (이비 경녕군, 1395(?)–1458), Only son
  3. Royal Councubine Shin of the Yeongwol Shin clan (신빈 신씨, ?–1453)[11][12][13]
    1. Yi In, Prince Hamnyeong (이인 함녕군, ?–1467), 1st son
    2. Yi Jeong, Prince Onnyeong (이정 온녕군, 1407–1453), 2nd son
    3. Princess Jeongshin (정신옹주, dates unknown), 1st daughter[14]
    4. Princess Jeongjeong (정정옹주, dates unknown), 2nd daughter[15]
    5. Princess Sukjeong (숙정옹주, dates unknown), 3rd daughter[16]
    6. Princess Suknyeong (숙녕옹주, dates unknown), 4th daughter[17]
    7. Princess Sukgyeong (숙경옹주, dates unknown), 5th daughter[18]
    8. Princess Sukgeun (숙근옹주, ?–1450), 6th daughter[19]
    9. Princess Soshin (소신옹주), 7th daughter[20]
  4. Royal Concubine Seon of the Ahn clan (선빈 안씨, ?–1468)[21][22]
    1. Yi Chi, Prince Ik-nyeong (이치 익녕군, 1422–1464), Only and youngest son
    2. Princess Sosuk (소숙옹주, ?-1456), 1st daughter[23]
    3. Princess Gyeongshin (경신옹주, dates unknown), 2nd daughter[24]
    4. An unknown 3rd daughter
  5. Royal Concubine Ui of the Kwon clan (의빈 권씨, dates unknown)[25][26][27]
    1. Princess Jeonghye (정혜옹주, ?-1424), Only daughter[28]
  6. Royal Concubine So of the No clan (소빈 노씨, ?–1479)[29][30]
    1. Princess Sukhye (숙혜옹주, ?–1464), Only daughter[31]
  7. Royal Concubine Myeong of the Andong Kim clan (명빈 김씨)
    1. Princess Sukan (숙안옹주, ?-1464), Only daughter[32]
  8. Royal Concubine Jeong of the Go clan (정빈 고씨, ?–1426)[33]
    1. Yi Nong, Prince Geunnyeong (이농 근녕군, 1411-1462), Only son[34]
  9. Decent Beauty Lady Choi (숙의 최씨, dates unknown)
    1. Yi Ta, Prince Huiryeong (이타 희령군, ?-1465), Only son
    2. An unnamed daughter
  10. Princess Deoksuk of the Yi clan (덕숙옹주 이씨)
    1. Yi Gan, Prince Huryeong (이간 후령군, ?-1465), Only son
    2. Princess Suksun (숙순옹주, dates unknown), Only daughter[35]
  11. Lady Ahn (안씨)
    1. Yi Ji, Prince Hyeryeong (이지 혜령군, 1407–1440), Only son
  12. Lady Sukgong of the Kim clan (숙공궁주 김씨) - No issue.
  13. Lady Uijeong of the Jo clan (의정궁주 조씨) - No issue.
  14. Lady Hyesun of the Yi clan (혜순궁주 이씨) - No issue.
  15. Lady Shinsun of the Yi clan (신순궁주 이씨) - No issue.
  16. Princess Hyeseon of the Hong clan (혜선옹주 홍씨) - No issue.
  17. Princess Sunhye of the Jang clan (순혜옹주 장씨) - No issue.
  18. Geum Yeong, Princess Seogyeong (금영 서경옹주) - No issue.

His full posthumous name[edit]

  • King Taejong Gongjeong Seongdeok Sin-gong Geoncheon Chegeuk Daejeong Gye-u Munmu Yecheol Seongnyeol Gwanghyo the Great
  • 태종공정성덕신공건천체극대정계우문무예철성렬광효대왕
  • 太宗恭定聖德神功建天體極大正啓佑文武叡哲成烈光孝大王

Modern depiction[edit]

Tears of the Dragon, a popular KBS television historical drama that aired from 1996–8, portrayed Taejong's life. It depicts him as being committed to the stability of the kingdom, a commitment that translated into affection and devotion towards his father and heir (originally Taejong's firstborn son), although these feelings were not reciprocated due to anger about the 1398 assassinations. The anger culminated in the retired Taejo's efforts to remove Taejong by backing the Jo Sawi's rebellion and personally shooting an arrow at him during a reconciliation meeting. According to the series, Taejong grew to become perpetually suspicious of others around him (especially his in-laws), resulting in purges, a typical example being his execution of the queen's influence-peddling-but-loyal oldest brothers and naїvely-innocent youngest brothers. In disgusted response, his Crown Prince rejected the throne to become a playboy and his second-born son joined the Buddhist priesthood, deferring the position to the third-born son.
King Taejong is also depicted in the 2008 KBS historical drama King Sejong the Great (TV series) about his third son and successor, King Sejong, and also shortly in the 2011 SBS drama Deep Rooted Tree.

Corruptions of Korean Monarchy;
During his regency, the Daewongun attempted several reforms. His main goal was to “crush the old ruling faction that had virtually usurped the sovereign power of the kings earlier in the century”.[4]
When he took power in 1864, the Daewongun was determined to reform the government and strengthen central control. He led an anti-corruption campaign, disciplined the royal clans, and taxed the aristocracy, the yangban.[2][3] Cumings notes that this was not a revolution but a restoration, as the Daewongun was attempting to return to the days of King Sejong in the fifteenth century.[3]
One of the Daewongun’s effective acts as regent was the reconstruction of Gyeonbok Palace. The palace had been built during the reign of the first Joseon king. Much of the building was destroyed in a fire in 1533 and the rest was destroyed during the Japanese invasion of 1592. The rebuilding took seven years and five months. It was perhaps the most costly project during the Joseon dynasty.[2]
The Daewongun’s reforms were not very successful, as some scholars say he was “too highhanded and tactless”.[4] Not only that, but his policies did not have a lasting effect, as once Gojong came of age in 1874 and forced the Daewongun into semiretirement, he undid many of the Daewongun’s reforms.[4]

Foreign Policy[edit]

The Daewongun’s foreign policy was rather simple, as Cumings describes it: “no treaties, no trade, no Catholics, no West, and no Japan”.[3] He instead maintained an isolationist policy.


In 1874, King Gojong came of age. His wife, Queen Min, influenced his decision to “assume the full measure of royal responsibility,” an action that forced the Daewongun into semiretirement.[4]

Return to Power[edit]

The Daewongun enjoyed a brief return to power during the Imo Incident in 1882. On the second day of the mutiny, a group of rioters were received by the Daewongun, “who reportedly exhorted them to bring down the Min regime and expel the Japanese”.[4] King Gojong asked his father, the Daewongun to come to the palace. The Daewongun’s appearance, escorted by 200 mutineers, “put an immediate end to the wild melee.” Gojong gave the Daewongun “all the small and large matters of the government” and thus the Daewongun resumed his rule. Both Japanese and Chinese forces headed towards Korea to put down the rebellion, and Ma Chien-chung, a Chinese diplomat in Korea, decided that it was time to remove the Daewongun.[4]
The Chinese had three reasons they wanted to remove the Daewongun: First, he attempted to overthrow the pro-Chinese Min faction. Second, “he created a situation which invited the Japanese troops to Korea, thus precipitating the danger of a military conflict between Japan on the one hand and Korea and China on the other.” And third, “the Taewongun [Daewongun]-inspired disturbance threatened the foundation of a lawfully constituted government in a dependent nation”.[4]
Ma arrested the Daewongun on the charge of disrespect to the emperor for “usurping the power which the emperor had invested in the king of Korea”.[4] However, as he was the father of the king, he was dealt with leniently. One hundred Chinese soldiers escorted the Daewongun to a waiting Chinese warship, and from there to Tientsin.[4]

Return to Korea[edit]

In the fall of 1885, the Chinese returned the Daewongun to Korea, “despite strong objections from the queen and her followers”.[4]

Gabo Reform[edit]

In 1894, the Japanese were strengthening their hold over Korea. They needed someone amenable to them to be a leader in Korea during the Gabo Reform. They approached the Daewongun as a potential leader. When he agreed, on July 23 Japanese soldiers liberated him from the house arrest Gojong had placed him under. In exchange for his help, the Daewongun asked for a promise that if the reforms succeeded, “Japan will not demand a single piece of Korean territory”.[1] The soldiers took him to the palace, where they approached the king. The Daewongun reproached King Gojong and announced that he would be taking over.[1]
The Japanese became nervous after placing the Daewongun in charge, as he seemed interested “only in grasping power and purging his opponents and did not see the need for a reform policy”.[1] By September 1894, the Japanese decided that the Daewongun was not to be trusted. By early October, it became clear that “the plan to use the Taewongun [Daewongun] as a vehicle for the reform program had misfired”.[1] A Japanese statesman, Inoue Kaoru, was sent to Korea as the new resident minister, where he told the Daewongun, “You always stand in the way,” and forced the Daewongun to promise that he would “abstain from interference in political affairs”.[1]

Involvement in Queen Min’s Death[edit]

In 1895, Japanese officials in Korea were plotting the removal of Gojong’s wife, Queen MinMiura Gorō, Inoue Kaoru’s successor as Japanese advisor to the Korean government, and Sugimura Fukashi, a secretary of the Japanese legation, planned the attempt. The two decided to involve the Daewongun in the plot, and after making inquiries, learned that he was “indignant enough to plan a coup” and would cooperate with them.[4] On October 8, 1895, early in the morning, Japanese policemen escorted the Daewongun to the palace.[4] His involvement from that point on is unclear, but on that morning, Japanese agents assassinated Queen Min.


The Daewongun died in 1898.[4]


  • Father: Prince Namyeon (남연군, 1788–1836)
  • Mother: Unknown
  • Wife: Yeoheung, Princess Consort to the Prince of the Great Court, of the Yeoheung Min clan (여흥부대부인 민씨, 1818–1898)
  • Son:
  1. Yi Jae-myeon (이재면, 1845–1912)
  2. Yi Myeong-bok (이명복, 8 September 1852 – 21 January 1919)
  3. Yi Jae-seon (이재선, ?-1881)^

정혜옹주(貞惠翁主 , ? ~ 1424년)는 조선 태종의 서장녀이며 어머니는 의빈 권씨다.


1419년(세종 1) 찬성 박신(朴信)의 아들 박종우(朴從愚)에게 출가하였고, 세종은 혼인을 기해 그녀를 정혜옹주로 봉하고 남편 또한 자헌대부(資憲大夫) 운성군(雲城君)으로 삼았다.[1] 정혜옹주는 결혼한 지 5년만인 1424년에 죽었고 세종은 이에 조회와 저자를 정지하고 쌀·콩 1백 석과 종이 1백 권을 부조하였다.[2] 박종우는 이후 재취하였고 계유정난에 협력하여 정난공신(靖難功臣) 1등에 책록되고 운성부원군(雲城府院君)으로 봉해졌다.

성균관 악정 권홍(權弘)의 딸로 태종이 후궁 제도를 법제화하여 맞아들인 첫 번째 후궁이다.[1] 사대부가 출신의 권씨를 후궁으로 맞으면서 태종은 왕비나 세자빈에 준하는 가례를 준비하게 했는데[1] 이를 안 원경왕후가 식음을 전폐하고 통곡하자 태종은 가례를 취소하였다.[2] 권씨는 태종의 승은을 입고 정의궁주에 봉해졌고, 정혜옹주를 출산하였다. 1422년(세종 4년) 2월에 세종은 아버지의 후궁이었던 권씨를 빈으로 승격시켰다.[3] 같은 해에 태종이 죽자 비관하여 세종에게 고하지 않고 머리를 깎아 중이 되었으며 밤낮으로 불경을 외우며 태종의 명복을 빌어 후궁들이 이를 따라했다. 당시 조선은 억불숭유의 정책을 펴고 있었지만 궁중에서는 엄격하게 지켜지지 않아 정인지 등이 상소를 올리기도 했다.[4] 딸 정혜옹주가 죽자 사위 박종우로 하여금 재취하게 하기도 했다.[5] 세종의 여섯째 아들 금성대군을 맡아서 길렀고, 1453년(단종 1년)에 의빈이 늙고 병들자[6] 금성대군이 자신의 사저에 의빈이 머물 수 있도록 여러 차례에 걸쳐 청했지만 왕이 허락하지 않았다. 이후 의빈은혜빈 양씨의 처소로 옮겨 지냈다. 1457년(세조 1년)에 선왕을 위하는 왕의 특별한 배려로 궁호를 영수궁(寧壽宮)으로 고쳤다.


베이징 천도[편집]

그는 즉위 초부터 난징을 떠나 베이징으로 수도를 이전하려 했다. 베이징은 북평왕에 책봉될 때부터 이미 영락제의 정치적, 세력 기반이었고, 베이징에서는 북부지방의 수비대를 효율적으로 감독할 수 있었다. 1407년에 영락제는 천도를 정식으로 지시한 후 1409년부터는 대부분의 시간을 북부에서 보냈다. 그러나 수도이전을 반대하는 유학자들과 난징이 생활의 주 터전화된 환경은 쉽게 수도를 옮기지 못하는 요인이 되었다. 그의 수도 이전계획은 무려 14년만에야 성사된다.
1417년에 베이징을 재건하는 대규모 공사가 시작된 뒤 그는 직접 베이징의 황궁 건립 현장을 시찰하였으며, 한 번도 난징으로 돌아가지 않았다. 17년부터 짓기 시작한 베이징의 새 궁전은 1420년에 완공되고, 1421년 1월 1일 그는 베이징을 명나라의 공식 수도임을 선언하였다. 이로써 베이징은 명나라의 도읍지가 되었다.

1420년(영락 18년) 2월 청주 포대현(蒲臺縣) 출신 당새아(唐賽兒)라는 여성이 당시 중국 각지 농민층을 중심으로 광범위한 영향력을 확대하고 있던 백련교(白蓮敎)라는 종교단체를 근간으로 하여 청주에서 반란을 선언했다. 명나라의 평민 농부인 임삼(林三)의 아내였던 당새아는 어릴 때부터 불경(佛經)을 외웠는데 나중에는 스스로를 불모(佛母)라고 자칭하였고 백련교도가 되었는데 그의 설법에 많은 사람들이 설복하였다.
1420년에는 이들과 백련교도들을 기반으로 1419년 겨울부터 익도(益都)를 점령, 영락제의 실정을 비판하고 그를 폭군이라 규탄했다. 당새아가 이끄는 반란군은 난징과 짱수 성산둥 성 주변 점령하고 산둥 지방을 중심으로 맹위를 떨쳤다. 영락제는 즉시 진압명령을 내렸으나 관군들은 번번이 패전, 부상당하거나 사상자들만 내던 중 그해 겨우 반란을 가라앉혔다.
나중에 당새아는 체포되어 목과 손발에 형구를 씌우고 굵은 철사로 묶어 놓았는데, 매복한 당새아의 잔당이 그녀를 탈옥시켰다. 이에 시중에는 당새아가 요술(妖術)을 부려 모두 벗어 던지고 달아났다는 전설이 나오게 되었다. 화가 난 영락제는 "삭발하고 중이 되었거나 여도사(女道士) 무리에 당새아가 숨어 있을지 모르니 산둥과 난징, 베이징의 비구니들과 출가한 부녀자들을 모조리 잡아들이라"는 조칙을 내렸다. 명나라 각지에서 수 만명의 비구니 여승과 여도사들이 잡혀왔으나 결국 당새아는 잡지 못했다. 이는 그의 만년 치세에 큰 타격을 주었고, 이는 민중들 사이에 회자화되어 민담과 전설의 소재가 되었다. 후일청나라 때의 백련교도의 난은 당새아의 난과 홍건적의 난을 참고하였으며, 청나라 때의 작가 여능(呂能)은 당새아의 반란을 소재로 하여 소설 '여선외사'(女仙外史)를 쓰기도 했다. 당새아의 난은 조선에도 알려져 인조실록 등에도 고사로 소개되기도 하였다.


그는 정화 등의 항해사를 서부에 파견하여 서역 등을 탐험하게 하였고, 이후 한나라와 당나라 이후 새로운 교역로(해상 교역)을 개척하게 한다. 《영락 대전》을 편찬하게 하는 등 문화에 대한 관심도 컸다.
몽골족과 교전을 벌여 영토를 확장했고, 동아프리카에 자신의 심복인 정화를 보내 외교활동을 펼쳤다. 그는 문화 사업에도 관심을 쏟아 명나라 학문을 종합한 《영락대전》(永樂大典), 《사서대전》, 《오경대전》, 《성리대전》을 편찬하였다.
1424년 여름 영락제는 몽골 원정에서 돌아오다가 과로로 병에 걸렸으나 의관들 조차 그의 병을 고치지 못했다. 병세는 악화되었고 그의 일행은 퇴각하였으나 베이징으로 들어오기 직전인 8월 진중에서 세상을 떠났다. 그의 맏아들인 태자 주고치(朱高熾)가 그 뒤를 이어 홍희제(洪熙帝)가 되었는데, 이미 부황의 출정 중 섭정으로서 정사를 돌본 주고치는 무난히 후계자로 황위를 계승하였다. 당시 영락제의 나이 향년 64세였다.


그가 죽자 30여 명의 궁인을 함께 순장하였다. 이 중 2명이 조선인 출신 공녀였고 그 중 1명은 강혜장숙여비(康惠莊淑麗妃) 한씨로 지순창군사 한영정(韓永矴)의 딸이자 조선에서 좌의정을 지낸 한확의 누이였고 소혜왕후의 고모였다.
사후 영락제는 국가의 기틀을 잡은 황제 또는 두번째 황제에게 의례적으로 주어지는 묘호인 태종(太宗)이라는 묘호를 받았다. 그러나 1500년대 이후 명나라의 유학자들은 그에게 태종이라는 칭호를 부여한 것은 두번째 황제인 건문제의 존재 자체를 무시하는 부당한 행위라는 여론이 제기되기 시작하였다. 의논이 계속되면서 1538년 영락제의 묘호는 태종에서 성조(成祖)로 바뀌게 된다.


  • 부황 : 태조 고황제
  • 모후 : 효자고황후
  • 황후 : 인효문황후 서씨(仁孝文皇后 徐氏)
    • 장남 : 황태자 주고치(皇太子 朱高熾) - 홍희제
      • 장손 : 황태손 주첨기(皇太孫 朱瞻基) - 선덕제
    • 차남 : 한왕 주고후(漢王 朱高煦)
    • 3남 : 조간왕 주고수(趙簡王 朱高燧)
    • 3녀 : 안성공주(安成公主)
    • 4녀 : 함녕공주(咸寧公主)
  • 후궁 : 왕귀비(王貴妃)
  • 후궁 : 현인비(賢仁妃)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 여미인(呂美人)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 강혜장숙여비(康惠莊淑麗妃)- 조선의 공녀로 한확의 누이. 공신부인 한씨의 언니다.
  • 후궁 : 강목의공혜비(康穆懿恭惠妃)
    • 4남 : 고희(高爔)
  • 후궁 : 임순비(任順妃)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 이소의(李昭儀)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 최미인(崔美人)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 공영왕미인(恭榮王美人)
  • 후궁 : 경혜노미인(景惠盧美人)
  • 후궁 : 정비(鄭妃)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 송비(宋妃)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 황비(黃妃)- 조선의 공녀
  • 후궁 : 여비(呂妃)- 여미인에게 현인비 살해 혐의를 무고함
  • 후궁 : 어비(魚妃)- 여미인에게 현인비 살해 혐의를 무고함

The Kingdom of Prussia (GermanKönigreich Preußen) was a German kingdom that included parts of Poland, Russia, Lithuania, Denmark, Belgium and the Czech Republic from 1701 to 1918. It was the driving force behind the 1871 unification of Germany, know as theGerman Empire, until its defeat in World War I. It took its name from the territory of Prussia, although its power base was Brandenburg. Its capital was Berlin.
Prussia was a great power since its foundation as a kingdom, though it became a military power as a duchy under the Great Elector.[3][4][5][6]
Prussia is reckoned as the legal predecessor of the unified German Reich of 1871 to 1945, and a linear ancestor of the current German state.

Jewish Autonomous Oblast

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jewish Autonomous Oblast
Еврейская автономная область (Russian)
—  Autonomous oblast  —


Coat of arms
Coordinates: 48°36′N 132°12′ECoordinates48°36′N 132°12′E
Political status
Federal districtFar Eastern[1]
Economic regionFar Eastern[2]
EstablishedMay 7, 1934[3]
Administrative centerBirobidzhan
Government (as of September 2010)
 - Governor[4]Alexander Vinnikov[5]
 - LegislatureLegislative Assembly[6]
Area (as of the 2002 Census)[7]
 - Total36,000 km2 (13,899.7 sq mi)
Area rank61st
Population (2010 Census)[8]
 - Total176,558
 - Rank80th
 - Density[9]4.9 /km2 (13 /sq mi)
 - Urban67.6%
 - Rural32.4%
Time zone(s)VLAT (UTC+11:00)[10]
ISO 3166-2RU-YEV
License plates79
Official languagesRussian[11]
Official website
The Jewish Autonomous Oblast (RussianЕвре́йская автоно́мная о́бластьYevreyskaya avtonomnaya oblast;Yiddishייִדישע אווטאָנאָמע געגנטyidishe avtonome gegnt[12]) is afederal subject of Russia (an autonomous oblast) situated in theRussian Far East, bordering with Khabarovsk Krai and Amur Oblast of Russia and Heilongjiang province of China. It is also referred to as "Yevrey" [13] (Yiddish: יעװרײ) and "Birobidzhan"[14](Yiddish: ביראבידזשאן). Its administrative center is the town ofBirobidzhan. As of the 2010 Census, its population was 176,558.[8]
Soviet authorities established the autonomous oblast in 1934. It was the result of Joseph Stalin's nationality policy, which provided the Jewish population of the Soviet Union with a large territory in which to pursue Yiddish cultural heritage.[15] According to the 1939 population census, 17,695 Jews lived in the region (16% of the total population). The Jewish population peaked in 1948 at around 30,000, about one-quarter of the region's population.[16]
In 1953 Joseph Stalin died and thereafter the Jewish population in the JAO began a long decline. The census of 1959, revealed that the Jewish population of the JAO had declined by approximately 50%, down to 14,269 persons.[17] In 2002, there were 2,327 people of Jewish descent living in the JAO (1.2% of the total population), while ethnic Russians made up 90% of the JAO population. By 2010, according to data provided by the Russian Census Bureau, there were only 1,628 people of Jewish descent remaining in the JAO (1% of the total population), while ethnic Russians made up 92.7% of the JAO population.[18]
The 2010 Russian Census Bureau data was however, disputed in a recent article of the Jerusalem Post claiming that approximately 4,000 Jews remain in the JAO. According to Rabbi Mordechai Scheiner, Judaism and the Jewish culture have recently begun enjoying a religious and cultural resurgence in the JAO.[19]However according to the magazine of the Federation of Jewish Communities of the CIS Lechaim currently the Jewish presence in the Jewish Autonomous Oblast is extremely small and is limited to the city of Birobidzhan and the nearby village of Valdgeym.[20]


The territory has a monsoonal/anti-cyclonic climate, with warm, wet, humid summers due to the influence of the East Asianmonsoon; and cold, dry, windy conditions prevailing in the winter months courtesy of the Siberian high-pressure system.

Administrative divisions[edit]


Population: 176,558 (2010 Census);[8] 190,915 (2002 Census);[21] 215,937 (1989 Census).[22]
The 2010 Census reported the largest group to be the 160,185 ethnic Russians (92.7%), followed by 4,871 ethnicUkrainians (2.8%), and 1,628 ethnic Jews (1%).[8] Additionally, 3,832 people were registered from administrative databases, and could not declare an ethnicity. It is estimated that the proportion of ethnicities in this group is the same as that of the declared group.[23]
Vital statistics for 2008:
  • Births: 2,582 (13.9 per 1000)
  • Deaths: 2,851 (15.4 per 1000)[24]
Vital statistics for 2012
  • Births: 2 445 (14.0 per 1000)
  • Deaths: 2 636 (15.1 per 1000) [25]
Total fertility rate:
2009 - 1.67 | 2010 - 1.67 | 2011 - 1.79 |[26] 2012 - 1.79(e)
Note: Data for Total fertility rate (2012) is estimate based on age and sex structure of Jewish Autonomous Oblast at the beginning of 2012, number of births in 2012 and fertility structure in previous years.[27]


Circle frame.svg
Religion in Jewish Autonomous Oblast (2012)[28][29]
  Russian Orthodox (22.6%)
  Unaffiliated Christian (9%)
  Other Orthodox (6%)
  Spiritual but not religious (35%)
  Atheist (22%)
  Other or undeclared (5.4%)
According to a 2012 official survey[28] 22.6% of the population of the Jewish Autonomous Oblast adheres to the Russian Orthodox Church, 9% are unaffiliated generic Christians, and 6% adheres to other Orthodox ChurchesJudaism is practiced by 0.2% of the population. In addition, 35% of the population deems itself to be "spiritual but not religious", 22% is atheist, and 5.2% follows other religions or did not give an answer to the question.[28]


Military colonization and the advent of the Trans-Siberian Railway[edit]

The northern bank of the Amur, including the territory of today's Jewish Autonomous Oblast, became incorporated into the Russian Empire pursuant to the treaties of Aigun and Peking of 1858-1860 (see Amur Annexation).
In December 1858 the Russian government authorized formation of the Amur Cossacks to protect the southeast boundary of Siberia and communications on the Amur and Ussuri rivers. This military colonization included settlers fromTransbaikalia. During the years 1858–82, sixty three settlements were founded, including, in 1857, Radde settlement; in 1858, Pashkovo, Pompeyevka, Puzino, Yekaterino-Nikolskoye, Mikhailo-Semyonovskoye, Voskresenovka, Petrovskoye, and Ventzelevo; in 1860, Storozhevoye, Soyuznoye, and Golovino; later in the decade, Babstovo, Bidzhan, and Bashurovo settlements. Expeditions of scientists — including such geographers, ethnographers, naturalists, and botanists as VenyukovSchrenckMaksimovichRadde, and Komarov - promoted the development of the new territories. Their achievements produced the first detailed "map of the Amur land".
The Jewish Autonomous Oblast with the administrative center of Birobidzhan marked
Construction began in 1898 on the Trans-Siberian Railway connecting Chitaand Vladivostok, starting at each end and meeting halfway. The project produced a large influx of new settlers and the foundation of new settlements. In 1908 VolochayevkaObluchye, and Bira, Russia stations appeared; in 1910, Birakan, Londoko, and In stations; in 1912, Tikhonkaya station. The railway construction finished in October 1916 with the opening of the 2,590-meter (8,500 ft) Khabarovsk Bridge across the Amur at Khabarovsk. In the pre-revolutionary period most local inhabitants were farmers. The only industrial enterprise was the Tungussky timber mill, although gold was mined in the Sutara River, and there were some small railway workshops. During the civil war, the territory of the future Jewish Autonomous Oblast was the scene ofterrible battles[vague]. The economy declined, though it was recovering in 1926 and 1927.

Jewish settlement and development in the region[edit]

On March 28, 1928, the Presidium of the General Executive Committee of the USSR passed the decree "On the attaching for Komzet of free territory near the Amur River in the Far East for settlement of the working Jews." The decree meant "a possibility of establishment of a Jewish administrative territorial unit on the territory of the called region".[30] In the future, based on JAO was supposed to create a Jewish republic (as a place of compact residence of the Jews of the USSR), but this plan was never implemented.[31]
On August 20, 1930 the General Executive Committee of RSFSR accepted the decree "On formation of the Birobidzhan national region in the structure of the Far Eastern Territory". The State Planning Committee considered the Birobidzhan national region as a separate economic unit. In 1932 the first scheduled figures of the region development were considered and authorized.[by whom?][30] The Organization for Jewish Colonisation in the Soviet Union, a Jewish Communist organization in North America, successfully encouraged the immigration of some US residents, such as the family of George Koval, which arrived in 1932.[32]
Statue of settlers on the railway station in Birobidzhan.
On May 7, 1934, the Presidium of the General Executive Committee accepted the decree on its transformation into the Jewish Autonomous Region within the Russian Federation. In 1938, with formation of the Khabarovsk Territory, the Jewish Autonomous Region (JAR) was included in its structure.[30]
According to Joseph Stalin's national policy, each of the national groups that formed the Soviet Union would receive a territory in which to pursue cultural autonomy in a socialist framework. In that sense, it also responded to two supposed threats to the Soviet state:
  1. Judaism, which ran counter to official state policy of atheism
  2. Zionism — the advocacy of a Jewish national state in Palestine — which countered Soviet views of nationalism.
The Soviets envisaged setting up a new "Soviet Zion", where a proletarianJewish culture could be developed. Yiddish, rather than Hebrew, would be the national language, and a new socialist literature and arts would replace religion as the primary expression of culture.
Stalin's theory on the National Question regarded a group as a nation only if it had a territory, and since there was no Jewish territory, per se, the Jews were not a nation and did not have national rights. Jewish Communists argued that the way to solve this ideological dilemma was by creating a Jewish territory, hence the ideological motivation for the Jewish Autonomous Oblast. Politically, it was also considered desirable to create a Soviet Jewish homeland as an ideological alternative to Zionism and the theory put forward by Socialist Zionists such as Ber Borochov that the Jewish Question could be resolved by creating a Jewish territory in Palestine. Thus Birobidzhan was important for propaganda purposes as an argument against Zionism which was a rival ideology to Marxism among left-wing Jews.
Another important goal of the Birobidzhan project involved increasing settlement in the remote Soviet Far East, especially along the vulnerable border with China. In 1928, there was virtually no settlement in the area, while Jews had deep roots in the western half of the Soviet Union, in UkraineBelarus and Russia proper. In fact, there had initially been proposals to create a Jewish Soviet Republic in the Crimea or in part of Ukraine but these were rejected because of fears of antagonizing non-Jews in those regions.
Momument of Jewish writer Sholem Aleichem in Birobidzhan.
Birobidzhan had a harsh geography and climate: the landscape largely swampland, and any new settlers would have to build their lives from scratch.
By the 1930s, a massive propaganda campaign developed to induce more Jewish settlers to move there. The campaign partly incorporated the standard Soviet propaganda tools of the era and included posters and Yiddish-language novels describing a socialist utopia there. Other methods bordered on the bizarre. In one instance, leaflets promoting Birobidzhan were dropped from an airplane over a Jewish neighborhood in Belarus. In another instance, a government-produced Yiddish film called Seekers of Happiness told the story of a Jewish family that fled the Great Depression in the United States to make a new life for itself in Birobidzhan.
As the Jewish population grew, so did the impact of Yiddish culture on the region. Settlers established a Yiddish newspaper, the Birobidzhaner Shtern (Russian: Биробиджанер Штерн; Yiddish:ביראָבידזשאַנער שטערן, "Star of Birobidzhan"); a theater troupe was created; and streets being built in the new city were named after prominent Yiddish authors such as Sholom Aleichem and Y. L. Peretz. The Yiddish language was deliberately bolstered as a basis for efforts to secularize the Jewish population and, despite the general curtailment of this action as described immediately below, the Birobidzhaner Shtern continues to publish a section in Yiddish.[33]
Sign on the JAO government headquarters.
Valdgeym, a Jewish settlement within the Jewish Autonomous Oblast,[34] dates from 1928 and formed the first collective farm established in the oblast.[35] In 1980 a Yiddish school was opened in the settlement.[36] Amurzet also has a history of Jewish settlement in the JAO.[37][38] For the period 1929 through 1939, this village was the center of Jewish settlement south of Birobidzhan.[39] The present day Jewish community members hold Kabalat Shabbat ceremonies and gatherings that feature songs in Yiddish, Jewish cuisine, and broad information presenting historical facts on Jewish culture. Many descendants of the founders of this settlement, which was established just after the turn of the 20th century, have left their native village. Those who remained in Amurzet, especially those having relatives in Israel, are learning about the traditions and roots of the Jewish people.[40] The population of Amurzet, as estimated in late 2006, is 5,213.[41] Smidovich is another early Jewish settlement in the JAO.

World War II era (1930s and 1940s)[edit]

The peak of its Jewish population reached JAO in 1937 - 20 thousand,[31] and then continuously decreased.
The Birobidzhan experiment ground to a halt in the mid-1930s, during Stalin's first campaign of purges. Soviet authorities arrested and executed Jewish leaders, and Yiddish schools were shut down. Shortly after this, World War II brought an abrupt end to concerted efforts to bring Jews east.
After the war ended in 1945 the idea of Birobidzhan as a potential home for Jewish refugees revived slightly.

Events since 1991[edit]

A giant menorah dominating the main square in Birobidzhan
In 1991 the Jewish Autonomous Oblast moved from the jurisdiction ofKhabarovsk Krai to the jurisdiction of the Federation, but by that time most of the Jews had gone and the remaining Jews now constituted fewer than two percent of the local population. Nevertheless, Yiddish is once again taught in the schools, a Yiddish radio station is in operation, and, as noted above, theBirobidzhaner Shtern includes a section in Yiddish.
L'Chayim, Comrade Stalin!, a documentary on Stalin's creation of the Jewish Autonomous Region and its settlement, was released by The Cinema Guild in 2003. In addition to being a history of the creation of the Jewish Autonomous Oblast, the film features scenes of contemporary Birobidzhan and interviews with Jewish residents.[42]
There is a proposal to merge JAO with Khabarovsk Krai.[43][44] Another suggestion was to merge it with Amur Oblast to form the Amur region.[44] The proposals caused many objections from amongst local JAO groups and residents, and also protests in the Jewish community of Russia.[45] The presidential envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District Viktor Ishayev advocated merging JAO into Khabarovsk Krai,[44] but believed the merger is currently premature.[46][47] Some have projected that the JAO may soon become the wealthiest oblast in the region. Amongst the citizens of the JAO, there is nearly uniform opposition to such a merger, yet neighboring oblasts more generally support the prospect of such a merger .[48]


The Birobidzhan Jewish National University works in cooperation with the local Jewish community of Birobidzhan. The university, uniquely in the Russian Far East and the Far East as a whole, uses as the basis of its teaching the study of the Hebrew language, history and classic Jewish texts.[49]
In recent years, the Jewish Autonomous Oblast has grown interested in its Jewish roots. Students study Hebrew and Yiddish at a Jewish school and at the Birobidzhan Jewish National University. In 1989, the Jewish center founded its Sunday school, where children study Yiddish, learn Jewish folk dances, and memorize dates from the history of Israel. The Israeli government helps fund the program.[50]
Birobidzhan has several state-run schools that teach Yiddish, a Yiddish school for religious instruction and a kindergarten. The five- to seven year-olds spend two lessons a week learning to speak Yiddish, as well as being taught Jewish songs, dance, and traditions.[51] Today, the city’s fourteen public schools must teach Yiddish and Jewish tradition. The school Menora was created in 1991. It is a public school that offers a half-day Yiddish and Jewish curriculum for those parents who choose it. About half the school’s 120 pupils are enrolled in the Yiddish course. Many of them continue on to Public School No. 2, which offers the same half-day Yiddish/Jewish curriculum from first through twelfth grades. Yiddish also is offered at Birobidzhan’s Pedagogical Institute, one of the few university-level Yiddish courses in the country.[52]
In 2007 Yiddish studies professor Boris Kotlerman of Bar-Ilan University launched "the First Birobidzhan International Summer Program for Yiddish Language and Culture".[53]


The Jewish Autonomous Oblast is part of the Far Eastern Economic Region; it has well-developed industry and agriculture and a dense transportation network. Its status as a free economic zone increases the opportunities for economic development. The oblast's rich mineral and building and finishing material resources are in great demand on the Russian marketNonferrous metallurgy, engineering, metalworking, and the building material, forest, woodworking, light, and food industries are the most highly developed industrial sectors.[54]
Agriculture is the Jewish Autonomous Oblast's main economic sector owing to fertile soils and a moist climate.


The region's well-developed transportation network consists of 530 km of railways, including the Trans-Siberian Railway; 600 km of waterways along the Amur and Tunguska rivers; and 1900 km of roads, including 1600 km of paved roads. The most important road is the Khabarovsk-Birobidzhan-Obluchye-Amur Region highway with ferry service across the Amur. The Zhelty Yar airport located in the center of the region connects Birobidzhan with Khabarovsk and outlying district centers. There are also plans to establish international air service between Birobidzhan and Jiamusi in China.[54]

Historically, Ashkenazi Jews were thought to have originated from the Israelite tribes of the land of Israel, arrived in Europe in stages starting from ancient times (following the Greek and later Roman conquest of ancient Israel and Judea).[55]In the following centuries such Jewish communities were joined by migration of Jews fromBabylonia, Israel and other parts of the ancient world. First, Jews began settling in Germany, or "Ashkenaz", at least since the early 4th century.[56][57][58] Throughout Gaul and Germany for this period, with the possible exception of Trier, the archeological evidence suggests at most a fleeting presence of very few Jews, itinerant traders or artisans.[59] Yiddish emerged as a result of language contact with various High German vernaculars in the medieval period.[60] It was written with Hebrew characters, and heavily influenced by Hebrew and Aramaic. In the territory of what is now Austria, Jewish presence is documented since at least the 3rd century CE[61] In Hungary, minor Jewish presence was documented since the late Roman period.[62] In France, there was no substantial Jewish population in northern Gaul from late antiquity until the Middle Ages,[63] but Jewish communities existed in 465 CE in Brittany, in 524 CE in Valence, and in 533 CE in Orleans.[64] Jewish settlement in Romania dates back to 2nd century,[65] Jewish settlement in Italy dates back to the 1st century, when there was a large Jewish population in Rome.[66]After the Roman empire had overpowered the Jewish resistance in the First Jewish–Roman Warin Judea and destroyed the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem in 70 CE, the complete Roman takeover of Judea followed the Bar Kokhba rebellion of 132–135 CE. Though their numbers were greatly reduced, Jews continued to populate large parts of Judea province (renamed Palaestina), remaining a majority in Galilee for several hundred years. But, the Romans no longer recognized the authority of the Sanhedrin or any other Jewish body, and Jews were prohibited from living in Jerusalem. Outside the Roman Empire, a large Jewish community remained in Mesopotamia. Other Jewish populations could be found dispersed around the Mediterranean region, with the largest concentrations in the Levant, Egypt, Asia Minor, Greece, and Italy, including Rome. Smaller communities are recorded in southern Gaul (France), Spain, and North Africa.[67]Many Jews were denied full Roman citizenship until 212 CE, when Emperor Caracalla granted all free peoples this privilege. Josephus ben Matthias, a direct-line descendant of the Hasmonaeans, became a Roman citizen and adopted the family name of the Roman Emperor Flavius, before 70 A.D. This was before he accompanied Vespasian's son Titus to Jerusalem and wrote The Antiquities of the Jews (The History of the Jews). As a penalty for the first Jewish Revolt, Jews were required to pay a poll tax until the reign of Emperor Julian in 363. In the late Roman Empire, Jews were free to form networks of cultural and religious ties and enter into various local occupations. But, after Christianity became the official religion of Rome andConstantinople in 380, Jews were increasingly marginalized.In Syria-Palaestina and Mesopotamia, where Jewish religious scholarship was centered, the majority of Jews were still engaged in farming. Early Talmudic writings were concerned with agriculture. In diaspora communities, trade was a common occupation, facilitated by the easy mobility of traders through the dispersed Jewish communities.[68] Throughout this period and into the early Middle Ages, some Jews assimilated into the dominant Greek and Latin cultures, mostly through conversion to Christianity.[69] A remnant of this Greek-speaking Jewish population (the Romaniotes) survives to this day. In the late Roman Empire, Jews are known to have lived in Cologne[58] and Trier, as well as in what is now France. King Dagobert I of theFranks expelled the Jews from his Merovingian kingdom in 629. Jews in former Roman territories faced new challenges as harsher anti-Jewish Church rulings were enforced.In Mesopotamia, and in Persian lands free of Roman imperial domination, Jewish life fared better. Since the conquest of Judea by Nebuchadnezzar II, this community had always been the leadingdiaspora community, a rival to the leadership of Judea. After conditions for Jews began to deteriorate in Roman-controlled lands, many of the religious leaders of Judea and the Galilee fled to the east. At the academies of Pumbeditha and Sura near Babylon, Rabbinic Judaism based onTalmudic learning began to emerge and assert its authority over Jewish life throughout the diaspora. Rabbinic Judaism created a religious mandate for literacy, requiring all Jewish males to learn Hebrew and read from the Torah. Jewish minorities in both Christian and Islamic lands achieved a higher literacy rate than the majority of gentiles, which M. Botticini and Z. Eckstein suggest gave them an advantage to fulfill urban commercial and financial roles.[70]In the Caliphate of Baghdad, Jews took on many of the financial occupations that they would later hold in the cities of Ashkenaz. Jewish traders from Baghdad began to travel to the west, renewing Jewish life in the western Mediterranean region.[71] They brought with them Rabbinic Judaism and Babylonian Talmudic scholarship.[72]Charlemagne's expansion of the Frankish empire around 800, including northern Italy and Rome, brought on a brief period of stability and unity in Francia. This created opportunities for Jewish merchants to settle again north of the Alps. Charlemagne granted the Jews freedoms similar to those once enjoyed under the Roman Empire. In addition, Jews from southern Italy, fleeing religious persecution, began to move into central Europe. Returning to Frankish lands, many Jewish merchants took on occupations in finance and commerce, including money lending, orusury. (Church legislation banned Christians from lending money in exchange for interest.) From Charlemagne's time to the present, Jewish life in northern Europe is well documented. By the 11th century, when Rashi of Troyes wrote his commentaries, Ashkenazi Jews were known for their halakhic learning, and Talmudic studies. They were criticized by Sephardim and Jewish scholars in Islamic lands for their lack of expertise in Jewish jurisprudence (dinim) and general ignorance of Hebrew linguistics and literature.[73]

High and Late Middle Ages migrations

Historical records show evidence of Jewish communities north of the Alps and Pyrenees as early as the 8th and 9th century. Jewish communities begun springing up along Rhine in the first decades of 10th century[74] By the end of the first millennium, Jewish populations were well-established in Western Europe, later followed the Norman Conquest into England in 1066, and settled in many cities of the Rhine area by the end of the 11th century. In the 11th century, bothRabbinic Judaism and the Talmudic Babylonian culture that underlies it became established in southern Italy and then spread north to Ashkenaz.[75]Although the Jewish people in general were present across a wide geographical area as described, genetic research done by Gil Atzmon of the Longevity Genes Project at Albert Einstein College of Medicine suggests "that Ashkenazim branched off from other Jews around the time of the destruction of the First Temple, 2,500 years ago ... flourished during the Roman Empire but then went through a 'severe bottleneck' as they dispersed, reducing a population of several million to just 400 families who left Northern Italy around the year 1000 for Central and eventually Eastern Europe."[76][77]With the onset of the Crusades, and the expulsions from England (1290), France (1394), and parts of Germany (15th century), Jewish migration pushed eastward into Poland (10th century),Lithuania(10th century), and Russia(12th century). Over this period of several hundred years, some have suggested, Jewish economic activity was focused on trade, business management, and financial services, due to several presumed factors: Christian European prohibitions restricting certain activities by Jews, preventing certain financial activities (such as "usurious" loans)[78] between Christians, high rates of literacy, near universal male education, and ability of merchants to rely upon and trust family members living in different regions and countries.By the 15th century, the Ashkenazi Jewish communities in Poland were the largest Jewish communities of the Diaspora.[79] This area, which eventually fell under the domination of Russia,Austria, and Prussia (Germany), would remain the main center of Ashkenazi Jewry until theHolocaust.The answer to why there was so little assimilation of Jews in central and eastern Europe for so long would seem to lie in part in the probability that the alien surroundings in central and eastern Europe were not conducive, though contempt did not prevent some assimilation. Furthermore, Jews lived almost exclusively in shtetls, maintained a strong system of education for males, heeded rabbinic leadership, and scorned the life-style of their neighbors; and all of these tendencies increased with every outbreak of antisemitism.[80]

Usage of the name

In reference to the Jewish peoples of Northern Europe and particularly the Rhineland, the wordAshkenazi is often found in medieval rabbinic literature. References to Ashkenaz in Yosippon andHasdai ibn Shaprut's letter to the king of the Khazars[citation needed] would date the term as far back as the 10th century, as would also Saadia Gaon's commentary on Daniel 7:8.The word Ashkenaz first appears in the genealogy in the Tanakh (Genesis 10) as a son of Gomerand grandson of Japheth. It is thought that the name originally applied to the Scythians (Ishkuz), who were called Ashkuza in Assyrian inscriptions, and lake Ascanius and the region Ascania inAnatolia derive their names from this group.Ashkenaz in later Hebrew tradition became identified with the peoples of Germany, and in particular to the area along the Rhine.Ashkenaz and the Ashkenazi contrast to the land of Knaan, a geo-ethnological term denoting the Jewish populations living east of the Elbe river as opposed to the Ashkenazi Jews living to the West of it, and the Sephardic Jews of Iberian Peninsula.[81]The autonym was usually Yidn, however.[citation needed]the first half of the 11th century, Hai Gaon refers to questions that had been addressed to him from Ashkenaz, by which he undoubtedly means Germany. Rashi in the latter half of the 11th century refers to both the language of Ashkenaz[82] and the country of Ashkenaz.[83] During the 12th century, the word appears quite frequently. In the Mahzor Vitry, the kingdom of Ashkenaz is referred to chiefly in regard to the ritual of the synagogue there, but occasionally also with regard to certain other observances.[84]In the literature of the 13th century, references to the land and the language of Ashkenaz often occur. Examples include Solomon ben Aderet's Responsa (vol. i., No. 395); the Responsa ofAsher ben Jehiel (pp. 4, 6); his Halakot (Berakot i. 12, ed. Wilna, p. 10); the work of his son Jacob ben Asher, Tur Orach Chayim (chapter 59); the Responsa of Isaac ben Sheshet (numbers 193, 268, 270).In the Midrash compilation, Genesis Rabbah, Rabbi Berechiah mentions Ashkenaz, Riphath, and Togarmah as German tribes or as German lands. It may correspond to a Greek word that may have existed in the Greek dialect of the Palestinian Jews, or the text is corrupted from "Germanica." This view of Berechiah is based on the Talmud (Yoma 10a; Jerusalem Talmud Megillah 71b), where Gomer, the father of Ashkenaz, is translated by Germamia, which evidently stands for Germany, and which was suggested by the similarity of the sound.In later times, the word Ashkenaz is used to designate southern and western Germany, the ritual of which sections differs somewhat from that of eastern Germany and Poland. Thus the prayer-book of Isaiah Horowitz, and many others, give the piyyutim according to the Minhag of Ashkenaz and Poland.According to 16th century mystic Rabbi Elijah of Chelm, Ashkenazi Jews lived in Jerusalemduring the 11th century. The story is told that a German-speaking Palestinian Jew saved the life of a young German man surnamed Dolberger. So when the knights of the First Crusade came to siege Jerusalem, one of Dolberger’s family members who was among them rescued Jews in Palestine and carried them back to Worms to repay the favor.[85] Further evidence of German communities in the holy city comes in the form of halakhic questions sent from Germany to Jerusalem during the second half of the 11th century.[86]By 1931, Ashkenazi Jews accounted for nearly 92% of world Jewry.[87] These factors are sheer demography showing the migration patterns of Jews from Southern and Western Europe to Central and Eastern Europe.In 1740 a family from Lithuania became the first Ashkenazi Jews to settle in the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem.[88]Ashkenazi Jews developed the Hasidic movement as well as major Jewish academic centers across Poland, Russia, and Belarus in the generations after emigration from the west. After two centuries of comparative tolerance in the new nations, massive westward emigration occurred in the 19th and 20th centuries in response to pogroms in the east and the economic opportunities offered in other parts of the world. Ashkenazi Jews have made up the majority of the American Jewish community since 1750.[79]Ashkenazi cultural growth led to the Haskalah, or Jewish Enlightenment, and the development ofZionism in modern Europe.[89]Many of the surviving Ashkenazi Jews emigrated to countries such as Israel, Canada, Argentina, Australia, and the United States after the war.Shlomo Goren: (1972–1983)Avraham Shapira: (1983–1993)Israel Meir Lau: (1993 – 3 April 2003)She'ar Yashuv Cohen (acting): (3 April 2003 – 14 April 2003)Yona Metzger: (14 April 2003 – 14 August 2013)David Baruch Lau: (14 August 2013 – present)The Halakhic practices of (Orthodox) Ashkenazi Jews may differ from those of Sephardi Jews, particularly in matters of custom. Differences are noted in the Shulkhan Arukh itself, in the gloss of Moses Isserles. Well known differences in practice include:Observance of Pesach (Passover): Ashkenazi Jews traditionally refrain from eating legumes, grain, millet, and rice (quinoa, however, has become accepted as foodgrain in the North American communities), whereas Sephardi Jews typically do not prohibit these foods.Ashkenazi Jews freely mix and eat fish and milk products; some Sephardic Jews refrain from doing so.Ashkenazim are more permissive toward the usage of wigs as a hair covering for married and widowed women.In the case of kashrut for meat, conversely, Sephardi Jews have stricter requirements—this level is commonly referred to as Beth Yosef. Meat products which are acceptable to Ashkenazi Jews as kosher may therefore be rejected by Sephardi Jews. Notwithstanding stricter requirements for the actual slaughter, Sephardi Jews permit the rear portions of an animal after proper Halakhic removal of the sciatic nerve, while many Ashkenazi Jews do not. This is not because of different interpretations of the law; rather, slaughterhouses could not find adequate skills for correct removal of the sciatic nerve and found it more economical to separate the hindquarters and sell them as non-kosher meat.Ashkenazi Jews frequently name newborn children after deceased family members, but not after living relatives. Sephardi Jews, in contrast, often name their children after the children's grandparents, even if those grandparents are still living. A notable exception to this generally reliable rule is among Dutch Jews, where Ashkenazim for centuries used the naming conventions otherwise attributed exclusively to Sephardim such as Chuts.Ashkenazi tefillin bear some differences from Sephardic tefillin. In the traditional Ashkenazic rite, the tefillin are wound towards the body, not away from it. Ashkenazim traditionally don tefillin while standing, whereas other Jews generally do so while sitting down.Ashkenazic traditional pronunciations of Hebrew differ from those of other groups. The most prominent consonantal difference from Sephardic and Mizrahic Hebrew dialects is the pronunciation of the Hebrew letter tav in certain Hebrew words (historically, in postvocalic undoubled context) as an /s/ and not a /t/ or /θ/ sound.Further information: Ashkenazi HebrewThe prayer shawl, or tallit (or tallis in Ashkenazi Hebrew), is worn by the majority of Ashkenazi men after marriage, but western European Ashkenazi men wear it from Bar Mitzvah. In Sephardi or Mizrahi Judaism, the prayer shawl is commonly worn from early childhood.[95]The term Ashkenazi also refers to the nusach Ashkenaz (Hebrew, "liturgical tradition", or rite) used by Ashkenazi Jews in their Siddur (prayer book). A nusach is defined by a liturgical tradition's choice of prayers, order of prayers, text of prayers and melodies used in the singing of prayers. Two other major forms of nusach among Ashkenazic Jews are Nusach Sefard (not to be confused with Sephardi), which is the same as the general Polish (Hasidic) Nusach; and Nusach Chabad, otherwise known as Lubavitch Chasidic, Nusach Arizal or Nusach Ari.This phrase is often used in contrast with Sephardi Jews, also called Sephardim, who are descendants of Jews from Spain and Portugal. There are some differences in how the two groups pronounce certain Hebrew letters and in points of ritual.Several famous people have Ashkenazi as a surname, such as Vladimir Ashkenazy. However, most people with this surname hail from within Sephardic communities, particularly from theSyrian Jewish community. The Sephardic carriers of the surname would have some Ashkenazi ancestors since the surname was adopted by families who were initially of Ashkenazic origins who move to Sephardi countries and joined those communities. Ashkenazi would be formally adopted as the family surname having started off as a nickname imposed by their adopted communities. Some have shortened the name to Ash.Ashkenazi Jews generally maintain warm relations with their Sephardi counterparts.[96] In some instances, Ashkenazi communities have accepted significant numbers of Sephardi newcomers, sometimes resulting in intermarriage.[97][98]The majority of genetic findings to date concerning Ashkenazi Jews conclude that the male line was founded by ancestors from the Middle East.[10][11][12] While between 15% on the low end, and 80% on the high end, of the mtDNA or ancestral mothers are of a "rare", "very rare" or "extremely rare" (depending which study you read) genetic line. A slight majority of these studies to date have the female line originating in Europe, most similar genetically to Northern Italians, with none or almost no Caucasian contribution.[13] Others have found a similar genetic line among Greeks, and Macedonians. Martin Richards, of the University of Huddersfield in England, summarized the findings on the female line as such. "[N]one [of the mtDNA] came from the North Caucasus, located along the border between Europe and Asia between the Black and Caspian seas. All of our presently available studies including my own, should thoroughly debunk one of the most questionable, but still tenacious, hypotheses: that most Ashkenazi Jews can trace their roots to the mysterious Khazar Kingdom that flourished during the ninth century in the region between the Byzantine Empire and the Persian Empire."[109] A 2013 article in the New York Times referring to other studies on the line of Jewish mothers mentions a different study to the one of Richards stating: "Another recent study, also based on [mtDNA], found that a mixture of European ancestries ranged from 30 percent to 60 percent among Ashkenazi and Sephardi populations, with Northern Italians showing the greatest [genetic] proximity to Jews of any living group."[110]All studies agree that genetic overlap with the Fertile Crescent exists to some degree in both lineages, at differing rates. Efforts to identify the origins of Ashkenazi Jews through DNA analysis began in the 1990s. Like most DNA studies of human migration patterns, the earliest studies focused on two segments of the human genome, the Y-chromosome (passed on only by males), and the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA, passed on only by females). Both segments are unaffected by recombination, except for the ends of the Y chromosome - the pseudoautosomal regions (PAR1 and PAR2). Genome-wide association studies have also been employed to yield findings relevant to genetic origins. Genetic studies revealed that Ashkenazi Jews originated in the Middle East during the Bronze Age (between 2500 BC and 700 BC) spreading later to Europe.[13] Collectively, Ashkenazi Jews are less more diverse than other Jews.[11A study of haplotypes of the Y-chromosome, published in 2000, addressed the paternal origins of Ashkenazi Jews. Hammer et al.[112] found that the Y-chromosome of Ashkenazi and Sephardic Jews contained mutations that are also common among Middle Eastern peoples, but uncommon in the general European population. This suggested that the male ancestors of the Ashkenazi Jews could be traced mostly to the Middle East. The proportion of male genetic admixture in Ashkenazi Jews amounts to less than 0.5% per generation over an estimated 80 generations, with "relatively minor contribution of European Y chromosomes to the Ashkenazim," and a total admixture estimate "very similar to Motulsky's average estimate of 12.5%." This supported the finding that "Diaspora Jews from Europe, Northwest Africa, and the Near East resemble each other more closely than they resemble their non-Jewish neighbors." Archaeogeneticist Richards found that "50 to 80 percent of DNA from the Ashkenazi Y chromosome originated in the Near East, supporting a story wherein Jews came from Israel and largely eschewed intermarriage when they settled in Europe."[109]A 2001 study by Nebel et al. showed that both Ashkenazi and Sephardic Jewish populations share the same overall paternal Near Eastern ancestries. In comparison with data available from other relevant populations in the region, Jews were found to be more closely related to groups in the north of the Fertile Crescent. The authors also report on Eu 19 (R1a) chromosomes, which are very frequent in Central and Eastern Europeans (54%–60%) at elevated frequency (12.7%) in Ashkenazi Jews. They hypothesized that the differences among Ashkenazim Jews could reflect low-level gene flow from surrounding European populations and/or genetic drift during isolation.[113] A later 2005 study by Nebel et al., found a similar level of 11.5% of male Ashkenazim belonging to R1a1a (M17+), the dominant Y-chromosome haplogroup in Central and Eastern Europeans.[114]

Female lineages: Mitochondrial DNA

Before 2006, geneticists largely attributed the genesis of most of the world's Jewish populations, including Ashkenazi Jews, to founding effects by males who migrated from the Middle East and "by the women from each local population whom they took as wives and converted to Judaism." In line with this model of origin, David Goldstein, now of Duke University, reported in 2002 that, unlike male lineages, the female lineages in Ashkenazi Jewish communities "did not seem to be Middle Eastern", and that each community had its own genetic pattern and even that "in some cases the mitochondrial DNA was closely related to that of the host community." In his view this suggested "that Jewish men had arrived from the Middle East, taken wives from the host population and converted them to Judaism, after which there was no further intermarriage with non-Jews."[115]However, a 2006 study by Behar et al.,[116] based on high-resolution analysis of haplogroup K(mtDNA), suggested that about 40% of the current Ashkenazi population is descended matrilineally from just four women, or "founder lineages", that were "likely from aHebrew/Levantine mtDNA pool" originating in the Middle East in the 1st and 2nd centuries CE. Although Haplogroup K is common throughout western Eurasia, "the observed global pattern of distribution renders very unlikely the possibility that the four aforementioned founder lineages entered the Ashkenazi mtDNA pool via gene flow from a European host population:"..Both the extent and location of the maternal ancestral deme from which the Ashkenazi Jewry arose remain obscure. Here, using complete sequences of the maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), we show that close to one-half of Ashkenazi Jews, estimated at 8,000,000 people, can be traced back to only four women carrying distinct mtDNAs that are virtually absent in other populations, with the important exception of low frequencies among non-Ashkenazi Jews. We conclude that four founding mtDNAs, likely of Near Eastern ancestry, underwent major expansion(s) in Europe within the past millennium.."[115][116]In addition, Behar et al. have suggested that the rest of Ashkenazi mtDNA is originated from ~150 women, most of those likely of Middle Eastern origin.[116]A 2013 study of Ashkenazi mitochondrial DNA reached different conclusions. According to Costaet al., the four major female founders and most of the minor female founders had ancestry in prehistoric Europe, rather than the Near East or Caucasus. According to the study these findings 'point to a significant role for the conversion of women in the formation of Ashkenazi communities'[117]

Genome-wide association and linkage studies

In genetic epidemiology, a genome-wide association study (GWA study, or GWAS) is an examination of all or most of the genes (the genome) of different individuals of a particular species to see how much the genes vary from individual to individual. These techniques were originally designed for epidemiological uses, to identify genetic associations with observable traits.[118]A 2006 study by Seldin et al. used over five thousand autosomal SNPs to demonstrate European genetic substructure. The results showed "a consistent and reproducible distinction between ‘northern’ and ‘southern’ European population groups". Most northern, central, and eastern Europeans (Finns, Swedes, English, Irish, Germans, and Ukrainians) showed >90% in the ‘northern’ population group, while most individual participants with southern European ancestry (Italians, Greeks, Portuguese, Spaniards) showed >85% in the 'southern' group. Both Ashkenazi Jews as well as Sephardic Jews showed >85% membership in the "southern" group. Referring to the Jews clustering with southern Europeans, the authors state the results were "consistent with a later Mediterranean origin of these ethnic groups".[119]A 2007 study by Bauchet et al. found that Ashkenazi Jews were most closely clustered with Arabic North African populations when compared to Global population, and in the European structure analysis, they share similarities only with Greeks and Southern Italians, reflecting their east Mediterranean origins.[120][121]A 2010 study on Jewish ancestry by Atzmon-Ostrer et al. stated "Two major groups were identified by principal component, phylogenetic, and identity by descent (IBD) analysis: Middle Eastern Jews and European/Syrian Jews. The IBD segment sharing and the proximity of European Jews to each other and to southern European populations suggested similar origins for European Jewry and refuted large-scale genetic contributions of Central and Eastern European and Slavic populations to the formation of Ashkenazi Jewry.", as both groups – the Middle Eastern Jews and European/Syrian Jews shared common ancestors in the Middle East about 2500 years ago. The study examines genetic markers spread across the entire genome and shows that the Jewish groups (Ashkenazi and non Ashkenazi) share large swaths of DNA, indicating close relationships and that each of the Jewish groups in the study (Iranian, Iraqi, Syrian, Italian, Turkish, Greek and Ashkenazi) has its own genetic signature but is more closely related to the other Jewish groups than to their fellow non-Jewish countrymen.[122] Atzmon's team found that the SNP markers in genetic segments of 3 million DNA letters or longer were 10 times more likely to be identical among Jews than non-Jews. Results of the analysis also tally with biblical accounts of the fate of the Jews. The study also found that with respect to non-Jewish European groups, the population most closely related to Ashkenazi Jews are modern-day Italians. The study speculated that the genetic-similarity between Ashkenazi Jews and Italians may be due to inter-marriage and conversions in the time of the Roman Empire. It was also found that any two Ashkenazi Jewish participants in the study shared about as much DNA as fourth or fifth cousins.[123][124]Assuming this reference point the linkage disequilibrium in the Ashkenazi Jewish population was interpreted as "matches signs of interbreeding or 'admixture' between Middle Eastern and European populations".[125] On the Bray et al. tree, Ashkenazi Jews were found to be a genetically more divergent population than Russians, Orcadians, French, Basques, Italians, Sardinians and Tuscans. The study also observed that Ashkenazim are more diverse than their Middle Eastern relatives, which was counterintuitive because Ashkenazim are supposed to be a subset, not a superset, of their assumed geographical source population. Bray et al. therefore postulate that these results reflect not the population antiquity but a history of mixing between genetically distinct populations in Europe. However, it’s possible that the relaxation of marriage prescription in the ancestors of Ashkenazim that drove their heterozygosity up, while the maintenance of theFBD rule in native Middle Easterners have been keeping their heterozygosity values in check. Ashkenazim distinctiveness as found in the Bray et al. study, therefore, may come from their ethnic endogamy (ethnic inbreeding), which allowed them to “mine” their ancestral gene pool in the context of relative reproductive isolation from European neighbors, and not from clan endogamy (clan inbreeding). Consequently, their higher diversity compared to Middle Easterners stems from the latter’s marriage practices, not necessarily from the former’s admixture with Europeans.[126]Ashkenazi Jews are mainly the descendants of the non-Semitic converted Khazars or Europeans was proposed in 1883 by Ernest Renan, and was developed as a book-length thesis by Hugo von Kutschera. Since then it has enjoyed mixed fortunes. In Israeli scholarship it gained support from A.N. Poliak, whose exposition found support in Salo Wittmayer Baron and Ben-Zion Dinur. D.M. Dunlop (1954) thought the argument went beyond what the scant evidence allowed. It caught the public eye with the publication of Arthur Koestler'sThe Thirteenth Tribe in 1976. Bernard Lewis wrote that the idea was not based on any evidence, and lacked serious scholarly endorsement.[131]Though often encountered in fringe antisemitic circles, it has played a minor role in the history of antisemitism.[132][133][134] A 2013 study of Ashkenazi mitochondrial DNA found no significant evidence of Khazar contribution to the Ashkenazi Jewish DNA, as would be predicted by the Khazar hypothesis.[135] A 2013 conference of the American Society of Human Genetics with more than 10 scientists participating concluded that there was "no indication of Khazar genetic ancestry among Ashkenazi Jews".[136] Although there is no historical or DNA evidence to support the Khazar Theory, this theory is still popular in Arab states.[137]

Ashkenazi Jews, also known as Ashkenazic Jews or simply Ashkenazim (Hebrew: אַשְׁכְּנַזִּים,Ashkenazi Hebrew pronunciation: [ˌaʃkəˈnazim], singular: [ˌaʃkəˈnazi], Modern Hebrew: [aʃkenaˈzim], [aʃkenaˈzi]; also יְהוּדֵי אַשְׁכֲּנַז Y'hudey Ashkenaz, "The Jews of Germania"), are a Jewish ethnic division who trace their origins to the Israelite tribes of the Middle East,[10][11][12][13][14][15]sharing many common genes with other Jews since Biblical times.[16] Ashkenazi Jews are thought to have begun settling along the Rhine in Germany in the year 321[Ashkenazi Hebrew pronunciation: [ˌaʃkəˈnazim], singular: [ˌaʃkəˈnazi], Modern Hebrew: [aʃkenaˈzim], [aʃkenaˈzi]; also יְהוּדֵי אַשְׁכֲּנַז Y'hudey Ashkenaz, "The Jews of Germania"), are a Jewish ethnic division who trace their origins to the Israelite tribes of the Middle East,[10][11][12][13][14][15]sharing many common genes with other Jews since Biblical times.[16] Ashkenazi Jews are thought to have begun settling along the Rhine in Germany in the year 321[17] from Alsace in the south to the Rhineland in the north, before the Middle Ages.[18] Today, "Ashkenazi Jews" is a descriptive term for descendants of these immigrants, including those who established communities in Central and Eastern Europe centuries later. With them, they took diversifiedYiddish,[citation needed] a High German language [19] written using the Hebrew alphabet, and heavily influenced by classical Hebrew and Aramaic.The name Ashkenazi derives from the biblical figure of Ashkenaz, the first son of Gomer, and aJaphetic patriarch in the Table of Nations (Genesis 10). Gomer has been identified with theCimmerians, while the biblical term Ashkenaz here may be an error for 'Ashkuz', from AssyrianAškūza (A/Is-k/gu-zu-ai/Asguzi in cuneiform inscriptions)[32] a people who expelled the Cimmerians from the Armenian area of the Upper Euphrates.[33] This ethnonym perhaps denoted the Scythians, though the identification is problematical.[33][34] The theory presupposes a scribal confusion between נ/ו(waw/nun), creating A-shkenaz from a-Shkuz.[35] In Jeremiah 51:27, Ashkenaz figures as one of three kingdoms in the far north, the others being Minni and Ararat, perhaps corresponding to Urartu, called on by God to resist Babylon.[35][36] In the Yoma tractate of the Baylonian Talmud Gomer is glossed as Germania, which originally referred incorrectly to a Germanikia in northwest Syria. Ashkenaz is linked to Scandza/Scanzia, viewed as the cradle of Germanic tribes, as early as a 6th-century gloss to the Historia Ecclesiastica of Eusebius.[37] In the 10th century, History of Armenia of Yovhannes Drasxanakertc'i (1.15) Ashkenaz was associated with Armenia,[32] as it was occasionally in Jewish usage, where its denotation extended at times to Adiabene, Khazaria, Crimea and areas to the eastAshkenazic" refers both to a family ancestry and to a body of customs binding on Jews of that ancestry. Reform Judaism, which does not necessarily follow those minhagim, did nonetheless originate among Ashkenazi Jews (it began in Germany).Ashkenazi Jew is any Jew whose family tradition and ritual follows Ashkenazi practice. Until the Ashkenazi community first began to develop in the Early Middle Ages, the centers of Jewish religious authority were in the Islamic world, at Baghdad and inIslamic Spain. Ashkenaz (Germany) was so distant geographically that it developed a minhag of its own. Ashkenazi Hebrew came to be pronounced in ways distinct from other forms of Hebrew.In this respect, the counterpart of Ashkenazi is Sephardic, since most non-Ashkenazi Orthodox Jews follow Sephardic rabbinical authorities, whether or not they are ethnically Sephardic. By tradition, a Sephardic or Mizrahi woman who marries into an Orthodox or Haredi Ashkenazi Jewish family raises her children to be Ashkenazi Jews; conversely an Ashkenazi woman who marries a Sephardi or Mizrahi man is expected to take on Sephardic practice and the children inherit a Sephardic identity, though in practice many families compromise. A convert generally follows the practice of the beth din that converted him or her.With the integration of Jews from around the world in Israel, North America, and other places, the religious definition of an Ashkenazi Jew is blurring, especially outside Orthodox Judaism. Many Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews have joined liberal movements that originally developed within Ashkenazi Judaism. In recent decades, the congregations which they have joined have often embraced them, and absorbed new traditions into their minhag. Rabbis and cantors in most non-Orthodox movements study Hebrew in Israel, where they learn Sephardic rather than Ashkenazi Hebrew pronunciation. Ashkenazi congregations are adopting Sephardic or modern Israeli melodies for many prayers and traditional songs. Since the middle of the 20th century, there has been a gradual syncretism and fusion of traditions. This is affecting the minhag of all but the most traditional congregations.New developments in Judaism often transcend differences in religious practice between Ashkenazi and Sephardic Jews. In North American cities, social trends such as the chavurah movement, and the emergence of "post-denominational Judaism"[43][44] often bring together younger Jews of diverse ethnic backgrounds. In recent years, there has been increased interest in Kabbalah, which many Ashkenazi Jews study outside of the Yeshiva framework. Another trend is the new popularity of ecstatic worship in the Jewish Renewal movement and the Carlebachstyle minyan, both of which are nominally of Ashkenazi origin.[45]

By culture

Culturally, an Ashkenazi Jew can be identified by the concept of Yiddishkeit, which means "Jewishness" in the Yiddish language.[46] Yiddishkeit is specifically the Jewishness of Ashkenazi Jews.[47]Before the Haskalah and the emancipation of Jews in Europe, this meant the study of Torah andTalmud for men, and a family and communal life governed by the observance of Jewish Law for men and women. From the Rhineland to Riga to Romania, most Jews prayed in liturgical Ashkenazi Hebrew, and spoke Yiddish in their secular lives.France's blended Jewish community is typical of the cultural recombination that is going on among Jews throughout the world. Although France expelled its original Jewish population in theMiddle Ages, by the time of the French Revolution, there were two distinct Jewish populations. One consisted of Sephardic Jews, originally refugees from the Inquisition and concentrated in the southwest, while the other community was Ashkenazi, concentrated in formerly German Alsace, and speaking mainly Yiddish. The two communities were so separate and different that theNational Assembly emancipated them separately in 1791.But after emancipation, a sense of a unified French Jewry emerged, especially when France was wracked by the Dreyfus affair in the 1890sIn the 1920s and 1930s, Ashkenazi Jews from Europe arrived in large numbers as refugees from antisemitism, the Russian revolution, and the economic turmoil of the Great Depression. By the 1930s, Paris had a vibrant Yiddish culture, and many Jews were involved in diverse political movements. After the Vichy years and theHolocaust, the French Jewish population was augmented once again, first by Ashkenazi refugees from Central Europe, and later by Sephardi immigrants and refugees from North Africa, many of them francophone.Then, in the 1990s, yet another Ashkenazi Jewish wave began to arrive from countries of the former Soviet Union and Central Europe. The result is a pluralistic Jewish community that still has some distinct elements of both Ashkenazi and Sephardic culture. But in France, it is becoming much more difficult to sort out the two, and a distinctly French Jewishness has emerged.[48]In an ethnic sense, an Ashkenazi Jew is one whose ancestry can be traced to the Jews of Central Europe. For roughly a thousand years, the Ashkenazim were a reproductively isolated population in Europe, despite living in many countries, with little inflow or outflow from migration, conversion, or intermarriage with other groups, including other Jews. Human geneticists have argued that genetic variations have been identified which show high frequencies among Ashkenazi Jews, but not in the general European population, be they for patrilineal markers (Y-chromosome haplotypes) and for matrilineal markers (mitotypes).[49] However, a 2013 study of Ashkenazi mitochondrial DNA, from the University of Huddersfield in England, suggests that at least 80 percent of the Ashkenazi maternal lineages derive from the assimilation of mtDNAs indigenous to Europe, probably as a consequence of conversion.[50]Since the middle of the 20th century, many Ashkenazi Jews have intermarried, both with members of other Jewish communities and with people of other nations and faiths, while some Jews have also adopted children from other ethnic groups or from other parts of the world and have raised them as Jews. Conversion to Judaism, rare for nearly 2,000 years, has become more common.[51]A 2006 study found Ashkenazi Jews to be a clear, homogeneous genetic subgroup. Strikingly, regardless of the place of origin, Ashkenazi Jews can be grouped in the same genetic cohort — that is, regardless of whether an Ashkenazi Jew's ancestors came from Poland, Russia, Hungary, Lithuania, or any other place with a historical Jewish population, they belong to the same ethnic group. The research demonstrates the endogamy of the Jewish population in Europe and lends further credence to the idea of Ashkenazi Jews as an ethnic group. Moreover, though intermarriage among Jews of Ashkenazi descent has become increasingly common, many Haredi Jews, particularly members of Hasidic or Hareidi sects, continue to marry exclusively fellow Ashkenazi Jews. This trend keeps Ashkenazi genes prevalent and also helps researchers further study the genes of Ashkenazi Jews with relative ease. It is noteworthy that these Haredi Jews often have extremely large families.[52]

Realignment in Israel

In Israel, the term Ashkenazi is now used in ways that have nothing to do with its original meaning; it is often applied to all Jews of European background living in Israel, including sometimes for those whose ethnic background is actually Sephardic. Jews of any non-Ashkenazi background, including Mizrahi, Yemenite, Kurdish and others who have no connection with the Iberian Peninsula, have similarly come to be lumped together as Sephardic. Jews of mixed background are increasingly common, partly because of intermarriage between Ashkenazi and non-Ashkenazi, and partly because many do not see such historic markers as relevant to their life experiences as Jews.[53]Religious Ashkenazi Jews living in Israel are obliged to follow the authority of the chief Ashkenazi rabbi in halakhic matters. In this respect, a religiously Ashkenazi Jew is an Israeli who is more likely to support certain religious interests in Israel, including certain political parties. These political parties result from the fact that a portion of the Israeli electorate votes for Jewish religious parties; although the electoral map changes from one election to another, there are generally several small parties associated with the interests of religious Ashkenazi Jews. The role of religious parties, including small religious parties which play important roles as coalition members, results in turn from Israel's composition as a complex society in which competing social, economic, and religious interests stand for election to the Knesset, a unicameral legislature with 120 seats.[54]

Note that pilgrimage of Korean Diaspora ranging from Siberian Eskimos-Quebec Artic Inuits-China- Hainan Island- Somalia-territories under American/Russian/British/French/Italian/Turkey must consider the downsizing Manchu-Korea took since 1910! Paying homage to Korean peninsula is one thing- but still oppressed Korea emphasizes the educational literacy of Korean History among Korean Diaspora from overseas; Korean Diaspora need to live prosperiusly in the overseas neighborhoods one grew up while staying educated of Korean-Manchu-Chinese heritage robbed from them since 1910! Korea before 1910; just as Jews( just as jews took over Amsterdam/ Brazil) outcasted for gentile murders for jewish human sacrificial rituals as well as jews taking over its occupied land- it is the 1860s Kobe, Jap occupyg Jews that waged war with Russian Nonjews and leading to destruction of ManchuChina-Korean Three Kingdoms Era to favor Jews' power of Asia-Russia-Middle East using Jap as its scapegoat puppet in the East. + Korean ancestor look alikes;  김제동 and 김구

Even in Ancient Chinese mention giraffe sightings upon Chinese voyage to Somalia.
Somalia as well as Turkey and Uzebekistan-Russian (Siberian eskimo-Innuits crossing over from Russian territory of Alaska of North American continent Canadian Inuits as far as Quebec Arctic Innuits of Polar Bears) have Islamic - Animic Shaman of Innuits roots.
The Manchu-Jurechen Koreans once ruled over Vietnam before French and British took Vietnam and other Manchu territories of southern China for opium/silk hoarding commerce greed typical of 'jews using usury commerce to take over the territory they occupy without ever leaving wronly encroachments'.

Even in modern, 2013,Russian-Italy Catholic-Christianity ranks first and Islam ranks second dominant religion in the world.

The ancient feud of power and territorial dispute between "Russian Orthodox Catholic-Christians influencing much of Caucasian Europe" and "nonjew killing human sacrificial rituals/homosexuality/superiority practice of slavement/incest cult of caucasian jews" led to repeated "shock doctrine" conflicts financially funded by jews.

With each civil war, revolts, ww1-ww2-genocidal 1945-1953 conflicts, military
Combat throughout history; all murdering crimes result in Jew gain of wealth.
1910-1953 destruction and genocide of Manchu-Korea destroyed Chinese and Korean heritage, wealth, its desfendents, and its territories. As a result, jews who have been occupying non-resistant Kobe,Japan became central Asian power that belonged to Manchu-China and its Korean allies.

Jews persecuted for jew-ritual-gentile-killings as well as usury deceptions made them outcasts of Russia as well as European territories. Jews hiding since 1860s in Kobe, Jap took control of Japs.

Jews controlling financially dependent Japs targetted Anti-jew Russia as well as Islam influenced China-Manchu Korean territories.

With the facade of Russia-Soviet labelling responsible for all evilness; Jew evilness carried out without public spotlight. For example, Shanghai Chinese fighting the Russian Jews in China responsible for increasing prostitution crimes as well as French-American-British-European exploitations of Chinese and Koreans led to formation of Chinese Communism to overthrow foreigners. Such communism differs from Soviet-Ashkenazi-Hitler-nazism that zionist jews initiated to overthrow jew oppressors in Russia and Europe. Yet, jews labelled and blindly controlled the media with generic 'fight communism' that was actually created by jews!

Same jews coined "paganism" to generalize even the peaceful Eskimo-Innuits practicing Shamanism to ward off the very devastating-parasitic-jew-cults that encroach and enslave the natives of the territory unlawfully taken by jews! Killers-cults-jews should be coined pagans instead!

Since judaism hides thru its diaspora across the globe nondistinguishable by race or appearance; fighting a hiding oppressor deceitfully masked by armies of bribed scapegoats are the ways of the criminal jews.

Ottoman Empire collapsed by WW1; giving opportunity for jews to establish ISRAEL by controlling China-Korea-Russia-Jap-India's commerce.Segmenting the Ottoman Empire weakened its territories. Increased civil disputes among segmented Ottoman Empire too distracted them from combatting foreign invasion of jews; Author Naomi Klein's theory of 'Shock Doctrine' best describes the jew tactics.

Sikilar to the Ottoman Empire; jews gained control over America by assasinating Abe Lincoln who sought to unite the North and South. Even among freemason jews display good jew struggling to correct sins of evil jews.

The devastating fate of segmented African Continent as well as segregated Chinese territories since the fall of Manchu-Korea in 1910 are examples " assasinated Abraham
Lincoln" prevented by uniting Northern and Southern America by abolishing slavery! Seizing supriority inequality jew cult; practicing religious freedom that jews used as a front to gain American independence from Britain was short lived because jews persecuted nonjews in America more than media-literature spotlight of jews being oppressed ( Austrian Hitler Nazis killed jews that did not side with zionist jews as well as nonjews and those aged-disabled whom jews listed as unfit! Jews had disregarded the consequential dna defects resulting from jew practice of incest-homosexual prostitution increasing std' hiv' aids!)

American constitution mirrors Ten Commandments that jews use as mere 'front' that jews themselves (woody allen,hollywood moguls, Rotschild world bank descendent zionist jews)
do not follow.

Every neighborhood has segregated rich vs poverty-stricken areas. Jews take the rich neighborhood residence and enslave the poor. Such is a deceitful practice of modern day slavery of jews. Donations of jews backfire by purchasing reciepients to remain loyal to the jews making donations.

Throughout history, the Catholic-Christians recruited the poor to resist bribery of the jews.
Throughout history; Jews maintained wealth and slaved the purchasable poor.
Throughout history, the Russian nonjews feud with Jews are repeated.

Islams, Buddhists, Shamans of Eskimo-Innuits, and variius religious beliefs diagreeing Jew cult ( Gypsies-Boheminians who descended from ancestors that once persecuted Jews cannot find establishments due to jew influences in social structure; Initially, Gypsies and Bohemians had good cause in their wandering escapes; however, generations of its descendents lost track of initial root reasons and evolved into ruined lifestyles of poverty and crime).


Korean-Manchu diaspora

Located near the entrance to Japan's Inland Sea and at the cross-roads of East and West Japan, Kobe has been a key anchorage since the 8th century and a port of significance since the late 1200's. It was known as the Port of Hyogo, and was one of the first ports open to foreign trade in the late 19th century. Kobe has since grown into one of the largest container ports in the world. Although Japan has only a small foreign population, close to 50,000 Koreans, Chinese, Indians, Americans, British, Norwegians and others live in this cosmopolitan city of 1.5 million, running important businesses, foreign restaurants, and shops that line the streets. Among these cultures, it is not surprising then to find that Jews make up a part of the multiethnic community in Kobe.The first Jews who came to Japan were mostly traders. As such, they were naturally attracted to port areas. They arrived soon after 1862 when Japan was opened to Western commerce. By the late 1860's, around fifty Jewish families from various countries lived in Yokohama. During the 1880's, Jews also settled in Nagasaki, a port area important in Russian trade. At the turn of the century, Nagasaki was the biggest Jewish community. Kobe by that time had a functioning Jewish community with religious institutions and a Zionist organization. In 1923, Yokohama suffered a great earthquake, and later in the century, trade in Nagasaki with Russia declined, causing Jews in those communities to move to Kobe. Kobe now hosts the oldest surviving Jewish Community of Japan.Even though Japan was far from most other Jewish communities when it first opened its gates to foreigners, it is not hard to understand why Jews ended up in Japan as merchants. Since the Diaspora, Jews have been living as a minority in diverse lands. Often, they have been denied the rights to own land, serve in the military, and take part in government. As a result, Jews made trade their main occupation. By trading, many found that they could prosper without necessarily having to settle down in one place. Constant travel trained the Jews in different cultures and languages, and left relatives scattered throughout many towns and countries, giving the Jews an edge in international trade. Thus, their long history of trading expertise made the Jews assets to countries such as Japan which hoped to advance their own economies.Well before World War II, there was a comparatively large Jewish presence in Kobe. Trade brought both Sephardic Jews from Baghdad, Iraq and Aleppo, Syria, and Ashkenazic Jews from Poland and Russia. In addition, Russian Jews who may have been escaping pogroms also landed in Kobe. One well-known member of the community was Sam Evans (born Ewanoffsky in Odessa). He settled in Kobe in circa 1919. For many years he was a leader of the Jewish community, businessman and philanthropist. He was, in fact, the very first Jew to become a naturalized Japanese citizen. The first synagogue in Kobe was established in a rented Japanese house in Kobe. It served as the gathering place for prayer for the Sephardic Jews. Rahmo Sassoon, born in Aleppo, Syria in 1912, was responsible for the synagogue. It was named Ohel Shelomoh after Rahmo's father, Shelomoh Sassoon.With the outbreak of World War II, Rahmo and other Jews were stuck in Kobe, unable to travel or conduct business. However, the Jews received comparatively good treatment at the hands of the Japanese authorities. For example, during the war, German officers began to appear on the streets of Kobe, causing concern mong Jews there, who had helped smuggle European Jews to safety in Japan. Under pressure from the community, Rahmo Sassoon painted over the gold letters of the Ohel Shelomoh synagogue so that the location of the synagogue would be less conspicuous. Shortly thereafter, Mr. Sassoon received in invitation to meet with the Chief of Police of Kobe. At the meeting, the Chief asked why the letters were painted over, and Mr. Sassoon explained it was because of the anxiety the community felt over the presence of German officers and Japan�s alliance with Germany. The Chief told Mr. Sassoon the community had nothing to fear in Japan and ordered him to restore the lettering above the doorway to the synagogue.The Japanese accepted a large influx of Jews into Kobe during World War II. Even though Japan was allied with Nazi Germany, the community of Kobe helped save Holocaust refugees from 1940 to 1941. Japan's policy toward the Jews was much different than that of their allies. Japanese in charge of Jewish refugees knew little about Jewish customs and practices; they took action based on the belief that Jews are very influential in the world. In particular, they modeled their view of Jews after Jacob Schiff, a Jewish financier who raised huge funds for Japan during the Russo-Japanese War in 1904. Schiff helped the Japanese tremendously and demonstrated to them that Jews are good in business and possess strong worldwide contacts. Yasue Norihiro (a.k.a. Yasue Senkoo) and Inuzuka Koreshige, leaders of the military and civilian political clique known as the Manchurian faction, hoped to attract Jews to assist in their efforts to control Manchuria. The group's goal was to develop Manchuria and its vast resources. They believed that if they treated well the Russian and Sephardic Jews, and the German refugees who came under Japanese rule, that the Jews in East Asia in turn would convince their rich and influential fellow Jews in the United States to help with war loans. Also, they hoped that Americans would look at their good treatment of the Jews and thus change its negative policy towards Japan. Finally, these Japanese also looked specifically towards the refugees from Germany as possessing crucial scientific knowledge to help Manchurian development.Individual Japanese too helped to save the Jewish refugees for purely benevolent humanitarian reasons. Dr. Kotsuji Setsuzo, who earned a doctorate in Semitic studies from the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California, was influential in allowing the Jewish refugees to settle in Kobe. Kotsuji had been a former employee of the Japanese Foreign Minister Matsuoka Yoosuke. At the end of 1940, he visited Matsuoka and asked him to permit refugees to stay in Japan. Matsuoka, after long contemplation, finally agreed to let the Jews stay as long as the Kobe local police acquiesced to their presence in the city. Kotsuji borrowed money from a rich uncle and bribed the Kobe police, who thus agreed to permit the refugees to remain in the city until they could emigrate, provided they renewed their visas on a weekly basis. The refugees naturally agreed and were thus saved from expulsion to the Soviet Union.Perhaps the most famous person who helped save Jewish lives from the Holocaust is Sugihara Sempo, the Japanese consul to Kaunas, Lithuania, during 1940. That summer, ignoring Foreign Ministry cables ordering him to desist, Sugihara issued transit visas to about six thousand Jewish refugees from both Poland and Lithuania. The visas allowed the fleeing Jews to take the Trans-Siberian railway to Vladivostok, and to sail from there to the Japan. These refugees were supposedly on their way to Curacao, a Dutch colony in the Caribbean that did not require entry visas, but they were permitted to stay as transit passengers in Kobe for as long as they needed. Those who could find no other third country to accept them were allowed to settle in Hongkew, the Japanese-controlled section of Shanghai, where they spent the duration of the war. In 1985, Sugihara, at age 85, was honored in Israel at the Path of the Righteous Gentile at Yad Vashem, and a grove was planted in his name near Jerusalem.In Kobe, the refugees were helped by various organizations. Members of Nakada's Holiness Church came to pray for their survival. American relief organizations sent needed funds to accommodate the refugees with food and housing. Dr. Kotsuji came to interpret for them. Jews in Kobe itself numbered about fifty families when they established the Kobe Jewish Community in July 1940, and with the help of the Joint Distribution Committee in New York City, assisted the refugees to find housing, get visas, and depart for their ultimate destinations. During the years between 1939 to 1941, several thousand Jewish refugees passed through Kobe. The most famous of them were probably the three hundred teachers and students from the Mir Yeshiva in Poland. With Japan's help, it became the only yeshiva to fully survived the Holocaust. By December of 1941, when the war broke out with the United States, only a few Jews actually remained in Kobe. The rest had moved on to third countries, which mainly meant settling in the Japanese controlled Shanghai.Shanghai already had a relatively large Jewish population of 6,000 before the war. These Jews included the affluent Sassoon's and the Kadoori's of Baghdadi origin, and later the Russian Jews who fled the pogroms. During World War II, then, refugees from all over migrated to Shanghai, and the Jewish population grew to 18,000. Compared to their fellow Jews in Europe, the Jews in the Far East were treated very well. A refugee camp for Jews, know as "Hongkew Ghetto," was established in Shanghai in 1943 and most of the Jewish refugees moved there, but these Jews were allowed to leave the ghetto during the day to work, and they were not prosecuted. The city literally saved thousands of Jews from death.Memorial to Jews of ShanghaiOld Jewish Neighborhood in Hongkew District of ShanghaiMore Housing in HongkewBuilding Used as Hospital by RefugeesDuring the actual war, the synagogue in Kobe was burned down in an air raid by the United States. The Sephardic congregation was forced to share space with the Ashkenazi minyan, which welcomed them. To take shelter from the air raids, most of the Jews in Kobe moved to Arima in pril of 1945. They rented a dozen bungalows that had been built by professors from the University of Kyoto, who went there during the summers. The men were able to keep a minyan uninterrupted by the Japanese authorities. After the war, many Jews left for places such as America and Israel. Some who stayed did so because they felt they could maintain good business. Others bought property after the war at extremely cheap prices, and stayed to develop their real estate.Although the war destroyed the building where the old synagogues were situated, the cemetery on the other side of the mountain still preserves the memory of people who lived through the war. The cemetery is a true historical site. It is within an international graveyard, situated on the back side of the hill behind the synagogue. The Jewish cemetery is staggered in two areas, with the older section being lower on the hill than the newer. Inside, there are tombstones of people who came to Kobe from places from Amsterdam to Russia, from Syria to the United States, dating back to the turn of the century.Tombstone in the Newer Section of Kobe's Jewish CemetaryTombstone of person originally from Aleppo, SyriaAfter the war, the congregation of Ohel Shelomoh found a second home. Rahmo Sassoon had bought a small lot of land and constructed a warehouse for a furniture showroom. The furniture venture did not succeed, and the warehouse was converted into a synagogue. The post-war period also brought American occupation, and Rahmo Sassoon supplied the army with many goods. David Sassoon, a cousin of Rahmo Sassoon, helped with this business. Later David Sassoon became president of David Sassoon & Co., and served during the postwar period as the biggest supplier to occupation forces. He had a Syrian passport, and Syria was officially neutral. As such he served as an important go-between for business between the Japanese and the American military. He offered them services as a third party to help with an otherwise difficult relationship. Despite the shared name, neither Rahmo nor David Sassoon were related to the well known Sassoon family that resided in Shanghai.The present community center was built in 1970. The community raised funds to build a proper synagogue, and Rahmo Sassoon sold the land below full value to contribute to the congregation. The current synagogue is located in Kitano-cho. The Kitano Area is where most of Kobe's foreign architecture can be found. Kitano is located on a hill overlooking the city about ten minutes walking distance from Sannomiya Station, the hub of commercial activity. The area holds not only a synagogue, but a Russian Orthodox church, a Moslem mosque, and a Catholic church. At the time the present synagogue was established, the community was large and generally affluent. Quite a few Jews had once again come for trading purposes and to help participate in the modernization of Japan. Regular Hebrew school classes took place, and many social functions were held. Both Zim and Gold Star shipping companies had branch offices there. Residents included a large number of Israelis, as well as a number of Jewish businessmen, mainly in the pearl business.Memorial with date Synagogue was EstablishedCurrent Synagogue's EntranceThe Jews who prospered during those times did so because Japan needed help to develop into the modern economy that it has become. The Japanese found value in the Jews, who helped them establish many businesses, connections, and technology. It wasn't long, however, before the Japanese had advanced in technology, gained their own connections, and opened their own companies and investments in foreign countries, thus having less need for the foreigners whom they at first depended upon. The "endaka", meaning the sudden appreciation of the yen in the late 80's, caused serious difficulties for foreigners trying to do business in Japan. Both Zim and Gold Star, for example, closed their Kobe offices. Many others, too, closed their businesses, and about 30 families went back to their home countries to retire.The earthquake of January 1995 also caused a lot of hardships for the Jewish Community of Kobe. Many members lost their homes and their possessions. They were forced to move from Kobe, and to rent homes in other places such as Nara and Osaka giving Kobe time to be cleaned up and rebuilt. One member owned an apartment complex near the synagogue, but because of severe earthquake damage, it had to be torn down. He moved to Israel. Also, those members who lived further away found it difficult to get to the synagogue every Saturday. The synagogue itself suffered damage during the earthquake, and the front wall needed repair. The nearby Jewish cemetery too suffered damage, as certain tombstones were cracked. The community has received donations from various people, including a third grade group of B'nai Brith members who held a read-a-thon to raise funds, and a New Yorker who is a nephew of a man buried in the cemetery. However, the cost of repairs is high, and the community is still striving to raise funds to help in restoring the synagogue to its original strength.View of Side Wall of SynagogueEarthquake Rubble Visible in FrontIn spite of the drastic decline in population, the present members of the Kobe community are a diverse, active group of people. The permanent residents who number 70 from all over Kansai including Osaka, Kyoto, and Nara, come originally from New Zealand, the UK, the USA, Canada, France, Israel, Syria, Iran, Morocco, Iraq, the Dominican Republic, and elsewhere. The synagogue is an orthodox one, allowing Jews of all orientations to participate in services and holidays. Every Shabbat all participants are invited to a full sit down kiddush complete with cholent, salads, challah, wine, and beer. Anyone who joins the kiddush might hear Japanese, Hebrew, English, French, German, and Persian all within the time span of one meal.The Jewish community in 1995 was also active in adding to the overall atmosphere of Kobe. Members each seem to have their own claim to fame. Several were in the pearl business, with their head offices in Kobe, which is known is a world leader in the fresh pearl trading business. Others have also added to the variety of restaurants to be found in Kobe. One member for ten years ran a Mediterranean style restaurant before switching over to the pearl business. Another named Simon Elmaleh actually was the president of the Jewish community in 1995 and ran a Moroccan style restaurant called Marrakech. The community included some of the few people selling Persian carpets in Japan, Jay and Sumi Gluck, and students and teachers from Israel and the United States. It even included the Japan representative competing in Judo for the Maccabi Games of 1985 and 1989.Visitors to the community of Kobe are diverse. Hasidim with their black coats and payes come to Kobe every once in a while to help run services. This Passover, for example, two young rabbis came from New York to run the seder, and they brought matza shmuura to add to the meal. Families on vacation from other parts of the world often stop in to visit the synagogue. Also, there are quite a few young Israelis who sell jewelry and other goods in street markets, and utilize the synagogue on main holidays. On December 13, 1994, Itzhak Rabin, Israel's Prime Minister, visited the synagogue of Kobe. He came to Japan to speak of the Peace Talks between the Arab nations and Israel, and to help gain Japanese support for Israel. Recently, entertainers have come to add to the Jewish Community in Kobe, as The Hyogo Performing Arts company put on in June and July of 1995 a play called "Ghetto," at the Shin-Kobe Oriental Theater. The play features the music written by the Inhabitants of the Vilna Ghetto during 1943.The Jewish Community of Kansai is probably one of the most diverse congregations in the world. Although it is small, the history that it holds is strong and unique. The community has survived through many hardships, and hopefully it will thrive for a long time to come. May you too soon have the chance to be one of the many visitors to the community.


The 1914-1921 PeriodJewish Men from Rohatyn, Poland Imprisoned in Siberia, 1916 (PDF 703 KB):  A 1916 list of those from the Galician town of Rohatyn, Poland imprisoned in Siberia. The entire male population, aged 12 to 70, was imprisoned by Russian troops, leaving a community of starving women and children, to whom the JDC endeavors to distribute proper aid.   Aid to Rabbis in the Russian Empire and Palestine, 1916 (PDF 2.43 MB): Lists from 1916 detailing financial aid for prominent rabbis.Jews from the Russian Empire Requesting Contact with Relatives, 1917 (PDF 2.25 MB): JDC representatives assisted Jews from the former Russian Empire in attempts to contact and locate their relatives in the West. JDC representatives acted as intermediaries between relatives in this 1917 list and provided aid. Lists of Polish Jews, Grouped by Town, Requesting Assistance from U.S. Relatives, 1921 (Part I 5.93 MB;Part II 6.36 MB; Part III 11.27 MB): JDC representatives in Poland transmitted requests for affidavits, transportation funds, and other assistance from Jews overseas to their stateside relatives. JDC field representatives sent to the JDC NY Headquarters lists of Jews from a specific town in Poland, which included information on their individual needs and the details regarding their U.S. relatives. The NY office then followed up with stateside relatives. Genealogically rich materials such as Polish and American names and addresses appear on these 1921 postwar lists.Prisoners of War Released from Siberia, 1921 (PDF 1.57 MB): This 1921 list details former Hungarian, German and Austrian Prisoners of War who received aid from JDC and the American Red Cross upon arrival in San Francisco, en route to Trieste, Italy. This list was published for the information of relatives, who could expect the arrival of their relatives in Trieste by the end of June, 1921. Lists from the Nazi Period and its AftermathRefugees in Zbaszyn, Poland, 1938-1939 (Part I 16.86 MB; Part II 15.68 MB; Part III 16.73 MB; Part IV 16.23 MB; Part V 6.97 MB): A list of Polish Jews expelled by the Nazi government into this Polish border town, receiving assistance from the JDC in 1938-1939.Polish Jewish Emigrants in Hungary, 1939 (PDF 2.18 MB): A list of emigrants from Poland receiving welfare aid from the JDC in Budapest in 1939. Refugees on the SS. St Louis who Received JDC Aid, 1939 (PDF 2.07 MB): In May 1939, the SS St Louis ferried 907 passengers fleeing Nazi Germany to Cuba. They were denied entry into Havana, and JDC came to their aid. When negotiations between JDC and the Cuban government failed, the ship was forced to return to Hamburg. While the ship was still on the high seas, JDC won the consent of Holland, Belgium, England and France to accept the refugees, posting a $500,000 guarantee to cover support costs.Escaped Polish Jewish Officers in Komarom, Hungary, 1939 (PDF 2.18 MB) : This 1939 list includes names of the escaped Polish Jewish officers in the camp at Komarom, Hungary. Detailed information about the officer’s city of origin and relatives relative is listed. Vilna Refugees, 1940 (Part I 5.98 MB; Part II 5.45 MB; Part III 5.94 MB): Polish Jewish refugees receiving JDC aid, after they had moved eastward to Vilna, Lithuania in 1940 to escape the Nazi regime.List of Refugees Receiving JDC Aid in Tangier, 1941 (Part I 3.04 MB; Part II 1.97 MB) European refugees had been fleeing to Tangier, an international city, since 1938. Under Spanish occupation from June 1940, this became more difficult. After World War II, Tangier returned to international status. Jewish refugees came from different countries including Austria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland and Turkey. Many were rendered stateless. This list details monthly assistance provided to refugees by JDC.Jewish Refugees Leaving Japan for Other Safe Havens, 1941 (PDF 8.86 MB): These lists detail refugees who, after finding refuge in Japan from Nazism, are leaving Japan for Australia, Canada, USA, Burma, South Africa, Palestine, and South America. Included are names, nationalities, dates, Japanese ports of departure and destinations. A Refugee Aid Committee was formed in Japan in 1939, with JDC migration offices opening in 1940.German Refugees Receiving JDC Aid in Japan, 1941 (PDF 1.45 MB): This is a 1941 list of German and Austrian refugees stranded in Japan. Funds for their support are drawn from the JDC Germany budget. Included are names, cities of origin in Germany, and ages.European Refugees Receiving JDC Aid in Japan, Including Information on Overseas Relatives, 1941 (Part I 7.98 MB; Part II 6.18 MB) The Jewish community in Kobe, Japan compiled this list of European refugees and their relatives overseas, so that JDC can solicit aid from family members. Included are names, ages, birth information, profession, citizenship of refugees, as well as the names and addresses of relatives abroad. In the 1940-1941 period, JDC allocated more than $158, 284 to refugees in Japan.Yeshiva Students Receiving JDC Aid in Wartime Japan, 1941 (PDF 3.00 MB): Lists of students, organized by yeshiva, receiving JDC aid in wartime Japan. Included are the Mirer, Kamieniecer, Slonimer, Ostrów Mazowiecka, Klecker, Radiner, Telser, Nowogrodker, Lucker, Warschauer, Reverends and Lubavitcher Yeshivas.  Names, ages, birth data, profession and citizenship, as well as names and addresses of relatives abroad, are listed. From 1940-1941 JDC allocated more than $158,284 to refugees in Japan.List of Refugees Arriving in Japan and Receiving JDC Aid, 1941 (PDF 8.61 MB): These 1941 lists detail Polish and German Jewish refugee subjects, as well as refugees from other locales, arriving in Kobe, Japan in 1940-1941. Included are names, ages, birthplace, profession, date of arrival in Japan, destination and date of departure. With the heavy refugee influx, community groups turned to JDC for aid. A Refugee Aid Committee was formed in Japan in 1939, with JDC migration offices opening in 1940.http://archives.jdc.org/researchers/searchable-lists.html

..............the w a r victims due to Russian Catholic vs Jews

The Nanai language is a language of the southern group of Tungus languages. The most closely related languages are Ulchi and Orok.

Geographical spread of the language

The main part of the Nanais lives in Khabarovsk province: in Nanaiskiy, Amurskiy, Komsomolskiy, Solnechnyi, Ulchskiy, Khabarovskiy rural districts and also in Primorskiy province: in Pozharskiy, Olginskiy districts, besides in Poronajskiy district of the Sakhalin province. In Chinese People's Republic the Nanais are settled in Heilunzjian province (between the Sungaris and Ussuri rivers).

Language contacts

In 19 century, at the beginning of 20 century contacts with the Chinese took place quite often (especially among the Bikin Nanais). In the 20 century Nanai came into contact with Russian.

Photo © Yu.B. Simchenko. IEA RAS Archive
Making of traditional dress
Photo © Yu.B. Simchenko. IEA RAS Archive
listen to dialect;
 Nganasan (нганасаны), derived from the Nganasan word meaning “a man”. Similar to other northern numerically small peoples of the North, when the word meaning “a man” was used as a self-ethnonym, such word was introduced in the 1930s. Such word usage, however, has never been registered among Nganasan; self-ethnonym of the Nganasan is Nya (няа).

Photo © Yu.B. Simchenko. IEA RAS Archive
Such ethnoyms as Tavgi («тавги»), Tavgyitsi (тавгийцы) (originating from Nenets and Enets ethnonyms of Nganasan) were used earlier; correspondingly, the language was called Tavgi(«тавгийский») or Samoyedic Tavgi («тавгийско-самоедский»). Until the mid-XX century Nganasan was considered a Nenets dialect.

Photo © Yu.B. Simchenko. IEA RAS Archive

Аксандаков Владимир Кузьмич (1957-2003), пос. Красноселькуп
Фото © О.А. Казакевич, 2002 г.
Different local groups of the Selkup call themselves differently: šöľqup, śöľqup (the Northern group), čumyľqup (the Central group at the river Tym and at the river Ob by Narym settlement),šöšqum, śüssogum (the Ob group by the tow Kolpashevo and the group residing in the Ket basin), tüjqum (the assimilated by Turkic population group that once lived at the river Chulym). The names šöľqup, śöľqup, šöšqum, śüssogum can be translated as ‘a forest man’, the namesčumyľqup, tüjqum can be translated as ‘an earth man’.


Vowels. 25 vowels, which are opposed in tongue position (front/central/back), height (low/mid/high), labialization (rounded / unrounded), tention (tense / lax), and length (short / long): .
Consonants. There are 16 consonants: plosives p, t, k, q; affricate č; fricatives s, š; nasals m, n, ń, ŋ; laterals l, l'; vibrant r; glides w, j.
Phonetic rules. Positional modification of the phonemes is characteristic of Selkup. Consonant assimilation is quite common: e.g., voiceless plosives, affricates and fricatives become semi-voiced in intervocalic position and when preceded by a sonorant. Consonant clusters as well as diphthongs are avoided in word-/morpheme-initial as well as word-/morpheme-final positions. /ŋ/ does not occur word-initially nor do /w/ and /č/ word-finally. Final nasals (m, n, ń, ŋ) alternate with plosives of the same place of formation (p, t, k), sometimes also with zero, e.g.kanak/kanaŋ/kana ‛dog’, qontamqon­tap ‛I found’. The word stress is dynamic and tone, and it is free. No vowel harmony is observed as a phonological feature, though, in some sub-dialects, reduced vowels in suffixes tend to assimilate to the stressed vowel in the root.
Syllable. Most common syllable types are CV and CVC.

listen to dialect;


Kusamina (Tamelkina), Galina Vladimirovna (born in 1956), Farkovo settlement, 2003

Kukushkin, Gennadiy Polikarpovich (born in 1949), Farkovo settlement, 2003

Names and self-names of the language

Shor (Russian: шорский) is name of the language used by other peoples; Tadar til (тадар тил)Shor (шор тил) are names of the language used by Shors themselves.

Photo © Rashid Salikhov, 2004. Archive of Tomaskaya Pisanitsa Natural preserve and Museum

Generic affiliation

The Shor language belongs to Khakass subgroup of Uighur-Oguz group of Turkic language family.

Geographical Spread of the Language

The Shors live in the south of Kemerovskaya Province (Gornaya Shoria), downstream of Kondoma, Mrassu and Tom Rivers.

Language contacts

In prehistoric period the Shor language had contacts with Ket and Ob Ugric languages; in the early ancient Turkic period, contacts with Iranian languages, in later periods – with Mongolian, and at present – with Russian and Turkic languages of Gorniy Altai and Khakassiya.

Photo © Rashid Salikhov, 2004. Archive of Tomaskaya Pisanitsa Natural preserve and Museum

Амдыг(ы) тöлдиң алында полча,
Earlier, than the present generation it was,
Пурун(гу) тöлдиң соонда полча.
Later, than the past generation it was.
Чер пÿдерде,
When the land was created,
Чер-суг кабыжарда полча.
When the land and the water were struggling, it was.
Калакпа чер пöлÿшкан темнер полтур,
In those times when the land was divided with a stirrer,
Камышпа суг пöлÿшчиткан темнер полтур.
In those times when the water was divided by cane.
Кöгериш келип кöк öлең öс чаттыр,
Turning green, young grass grew, as it turns out.
Алтын пÿрлÿ ак казынның паштарында
At the top of a white birch with golden leaves
Кырык кушка какыш чöрча,
Forty birds are twitting,
Кöк öлең паштарында
On the green grass
Кöк торчуктар кöглеп чиган полтур.
Young nightingales were singing, as it turns out.
Часкы тем полтур.
It was spring time, as it turns out.


Photo © Rashid Salikhov, 2004. Archive of Tomaskaya Pisanitsa Natural preserve and Museum

Photo © Rashid Salikhov, 2004. Archive of Tomaskaya Pisanitsa Natural preserve and Museum

Photo © L.A. Moskalenko, 1991, Bekovo settlement
Shebalinskiy District of Altai Republic, Chumyshskiy District of Altaiskiy Region, downstream Sem River, as well as Novosibirskaya Province and the south of Kemerovskaya Province (Gornaya Shoriya), downstream Bolshoy Bachat and Malyy Bachat Rivers (Bachat Teleut).

Language Contacts

In prehistoric period the Teleut language had contacts with Ket and Ob Ugric languages; in early ancient Turkic period, contacts with Iranian languages, later - with Mongolian, at present – with Russian and Turkic languages of Gorniy Altai and Khakassiya; among the latter the influence of Altai literary language is quite strong.

listen to
Sample dialect;

Sound Sample of the Language

Feeding of somdor (ritual birch trees)
Ulus settlement, Kemerovskaya Province
Photo © D.A. Funk, 1982

The beginning of Myrat-Piy’s song

Recorded by D.A. Funk on 30 August, 1992 in Shanda village from A.K. Alagyzova [mp3 (33 s / 256 Kb) listen]
Mother’s Words:
Кöбöк, Кöбöк, кöл кечет,
Köbök, Köbök, is crossing the lake,
Кöмÿр аласы суу кечет.
Is crossing a charcoal(?) river.
Кöбöктең артык эр туулса,
If a man better than Köbök is born,
Теңис кечире мост салсын.
He will build a bridge across the ocean.
Myrat’s Reply:
Эки ташты колтыктанып,
Holding two stones in my armpit,
Теңисти кечкен, Мырат мен!
I crossed the ocean, Myrat is my name!
Йаңыс ташты колтыктанып,
Holding one stone in my armpit,
Йайыкты кечкен, Мырат мен!
Crossed the Ural (River), Myrat is my name!


Photo © D.A. Funk, 1999, Chelukhoevo village

Photo © E.P. Batianova, 2002, Shanda village


Bakanaev, Nikolay Sergeevich – an adept in Tofalar fairytales

Photo from archive of V.I and I.V. Rassadin
Translated into English by O.A. Povoroznyuk


Udehe is one of the Tungus-Manchu languages that is referred to southern (Amur) group. More precisely, the Udehe language belongs to languages of mixed type combining in itself the features characteristic both for northern and for southern Tungus-Manchu languages.

Geographical spread of the language

The Udehe people live in villages Gvasjugi of the district named after Lazo, Arsenyevo (Rassvet) of Nanaisky district of Khabarovsk territory, Krasny Yar of Pozharsky district and Akzu of Terneysky district of Primorsky Territory.

Language contacts

At the end of XIX, the beginning of XX centuries there took place often contacts with the Chinese language, since 20th century Udege came into contact with Russian that at the present time forced Udehe language out of use.

Number of native speakers

According to the official data there are about 2 thousand the Udehe people in Russia, according to our survey their number does not exceed 800 persons, approximately two thirds of them are descendants of mixed marriages. Native speakers are not more than 40.

Dialects and subdialects

There are two Udege dialects Khorsko-Anyuiski and Bikinsko-Imansky dialects. The difference between theres dialects is not great and concerns mainly phonetic and lexical spheres, it is explained by more tight contacts in the past with the Chinese in the area of spread Bikinsko-Imansky dialect.

The Nivkh (formerly the ethnonym “gilyak” was used). The word “nivkh” originates in the ethnic group self-ethnonym, meaning ‘man’. Until the 1930s the ethnonym “Gilyak” was used, coming from the name given to the Nivkh by the neighbouring Manchus. In Tungus-Manchu languages the word “Gilyak” means ‘people using big boats with sculls’.

Self-Ethnonym of the Ethnic Group

© D.A. Funk, 1999, Nogliki, Sakhalin Island
  • Ньивхгу (Amur dialect)
  • Ньигвнун (East-Sakhalin dialect)

Alternate Language names

  • The Nivkh language
  • The Gilyak language (obsolete)

Name of the Language


Genetic Affiliation

The problem of the genetic affiliation is not solved yet, there are numeral hypothesises on similarities between the Nivkh language and Tungus-Manchu, Turkic, Chukchi, Mongol, Chinese and Native American Indians languages. Today the Nivkh language is considered to be isolate and is conventionally related to палеоазиатским языкам.

The Geographical Spread of the Language

The Nivkhs live on Sakhalin Сахалинской области (villages Nekrasovka, Nogliki (north of Sakhalin Island), the Poronay region (south of Sakhalin Island), in Khabarovsk district (cites of Khabarovsk, Komsomolsk-on-Amur, Nilolaevsk-on-Amur, Aleevka village on the Amur). The Nivkh are settled scattered. At the moment the biggest groups of the Nivkh are gathered in Aleevka village on the Amur, in Val, Nogliki and Nekrasovka villages on Sakhalin, as well as in the Poronay region of the Sakhalin district. The Nivkh living in the Khabarovsk district on Amur almost lost their language, the Nivkh language being talked mostly in the Aleevka village. After the World War II a small number of the Nivkh moved to Japan (Hokkaido Isl.).
1932 the writing system for the Amur dialect on the basis of the Latin script was created. In 1932-1937 a Nivkh primer, elementary school textbooks were printed, 1935 on the basis of this script 11 issues of a newspaper “Nivkhskaya Pravda” were published, but soon this script was considered inconvenient from 1953 Cyrillic script was used. 1979 the writing system for the East Sakhalin dialect was created on the basis of the Cyrillic script.
Photo © D.A. Funk, 1999, Nogliki, Sakhalin island

All Chelkans are bilingual and have a good command of Russian which has already become native for many of them. Chelkan with the narrowing sphere of its functioning is still living only in family communication and in small production teams involved in traditional economic activities.
The main centers of the studies of Chelkan language – the Institute of Altaic Studies named after S.S. Surazakov (Gorno-Altaisk) and the Institute of Philology, Siberian Branch, RAS (Novosibirsk).


Krachnakov, Timofei Pavlovich, a Chelkan shaman, Gorno-Altaysk
© D. Funk, U. Persson, 2002

Photo © D.A. Funk, 2002

Three generations
Photo © D.A. Funk, 1999, Kurmach-Baigol settlement

The Chelkans are an ethnic group best represented in Turachakskiy and Choyskiy districts of Altai Republic, with the most numerous communities living in villages Kurmach-Baygol and Suranash, as well as in villages Turachak, Biyka, Itkuch, Kebezen.
The Chelkan language, along with other northern dialects of Altai language – Kumandin and Tubin/Tubalar – as well as with the Shor and Khakas languages, is related to Khakass subgroup of Uighur and Oguz group of Turkic languages.
During the whole Soviet period starting from 1926 exact number of Chelkans was lacking since they were not counted separately but rather were reckoned among Altaians during population censuses. According the National population census of 2002, the number of Chelkans equals to 855 people (see www.perepis2002.ru).

Linguistic Description

The Chelkan language as well as Altai literary language and all the rest of Turkic languages is characterized by vowel harmony in phonetics, with more stable auslaut guttural phones, i.e., compare: таг with the literary туу “mountain”; суг with literary суу “water”; in an intervocalic position they are often transformed into -й-яг – яйи “his house”; sometimes in literature initial –j- in Chelkan is substituted with нь:jаңмыр – ньаңмыр.
Chelkan is characterized by agglutination in morphology, fixed word order in syntax, the commonality of lexis, as well as by specific features in vocabulary as contrasted to the literary Altaian language.

Photo © A. Vakhrushev, 2001, Uelen

Discussions of the degree of “understudiedness” of the language of Chulym Turkic peoples are available on read-only websites, namely, on LanguageHat in the information from February, 3 2004.


Photo © N.A. Tomilov

N.I. Baidashev, Teguldet village, Tomskaya Province. Photo © N.A. Tomilov

Latikova (Tyganova), Olga Vasilievna (born in 1917), the eldest person among the Ket
Photo © O.A. Kazakevich, 2004, Sulomay settlement


Dorozhkin, Aleksandr Vladimirivich (born in 1958)
Photo © O.A. Kazakevich, 2005, Surgutikha settlement

Tyganova (Baldina), Nina Kharlampievna (born in 1928)
Photo © O.A. Kazakevich, 2005, Kellog settlement

listen to dialect;