Wednesday, June 10, 2015

How Muslim Rulers Had Brought About the Yellow Star Badge for Jews

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                       
Expelled Jews from Arab Lands, notice pointed hats on women
Rabbi in Palestine, probably from 1880 to early 1900s. Hat is a shtreimal, fur hat worn by Hasidic Jews.  Yellow belt may be the distincive badge here.   

Shortly after Mohammad had died in 632, Moslem rulers from the 7th century ordered that Jews and Christians had to wear special clothing to distinguish them from the "believers."  This was followed judiciously in Egypt in the 10th century.  At this time, Jews and Christians were given 2nd class citizen status as dhimmis with all sorts of rules besides clothing.   
Jew of Ottoman Empire Days

The type of clothing varied from country to country, but always it seemed to be designed to make Jews and Christians appear inferior and foolish.  In many countries the Jews were even required to go barefoot. Today we often hear Muslims in the Middle East charging Israel with unfairness and discrimination in regard to the administration of Israel’s Muslim populations.   How can they say this when Palestinians who remained in the state number 1.7 million as 1st class citizens today?  They should be apprised of how their ancestors treated Jews caught living in Moslem countries long ago.   Jews are not repeating the agonies they had to endear back then.          
Jewish captives in Arab land
"There were, for some long but uncertain period, a significant number of Jews in Arabia. Historians claim that very large numbers of Jews – as high as 80,000 – arrived after the destruction of the First Temple in 586 BCE , to join others already long established in places from the Assyrian attack on Israel in 721 BCE.  They lived in such as the oasis of Khaybar as well as the trading colonies in Medina and Mecca (where they even had their own cemetery). Another theory posits that these Jews were refugees from Byzantine persecutions. Regardless, Arab historians mention some 20 Jewish tribes, including two tribes of Kohanim."                 
German Jews in 13th century
The concept was introduced into Christian Europe by 1215 at the 4th Lateran Council.  They ordered that Jews and other infidels (Moslems?) should be distinguished from Christians by their clothing.  This became the law throughout Europe-and was strictly followed, especially in Italy after 1555 which was the Counter-Reformation.
Found on calendar,  the Jewish hat forced to wear-getting ready for Sukkot with Lulav and Etrog
Jewish pointed hat, 14th century
The color of the badge was normally yellow.  In England, and one must remember that Jews were expulsed from England in 1290 and were not allowed to return until 1655, so wearing a badge took place after 1655 and possibly from 1215 to 1290 as anti-Semitism grew worse.  This badge in Europe often took the form of the 2 Tablets of the Law.
Jewish woman, yellow citcle
 In France, Spain and elsewhere, it was a large circular patch known as the ruota, Italian for "wheel."  In Germany down to the 18th century, it was a large yellow circle.  In Italy, where the badge was not considered sufficiently prominent, a hat of distinctive color was enforced.  They wore red hats in Venice, yellow in Rome.
The wearing of the badge or hat, even in countries highly anti-Semitic, stopped being used by the 18th century but was re-enacted in Rome in 1797.  It had been abolished in the Napoleonic era.
Then the badge was revived by the Nazis and made compulsory in Germany and throughout the occupied areas of Europe in the form of the yellow Star of David. with the letter J or the word "Jude" or its equivalent inside the star.  The Nazis resurrected this practice as part of their persecutions during the Holocaust. Reinhard Heydrich, chief of the Reich Main Security Office, first recommended that Jews should wear identifying badges following the Kristallnacht pogrom of November 9 and 10, 1938. 
Blue star on white background in Poland as armband

Shortly after the invasion of Poland in September 1939, local German authorities began introducing mandatory wearing of badges. By the end of 1939, all Jews in the newly-acquired Polish territories were required to wear badges.

Resource: The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia,+pictures&source=bl&ots=d1wdF_UVB-&sig=i7z7Jk0pKdYSpqkfbLqK6Lw-dag&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CFAQ6AEwB2oVChMIm-2BjMaFxgIVzqKICh2B9QCP#v=onepage&q=clothing%20of%20Jews%20in%20Muslim%20countries%2C%20pictures&f=false  .....many more badges shown in pictures

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