To Come to the Land

To Come to the Land : Immigration and Settlement in 16th-Century Eretz-Israel

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To Come to the Land makes available in English a vast body of research,
previously available only in Hebrew, on the early history of the land now
known as Israel.

Abraham David here focuses on the Spanish and Portuguese Jews who fled
the Iberian Peninsula during the 16th century, tracing the beginnings of
Sephardic influence in the land of Israel.

After the Ottoman Turks conquered Syria, Palestine, and Egypt in 1516,
the Ottoman regime, unlike their Mamluk predecessors, encouraged economic
development and settlement throughout the region. This openness to immigration
offered a solution to the crisis Iberian Jews were undergoing as a result
of their expulsion from Spain and the forced conversions in Portugal. Within
a few years of the Ottoman conquest, Jews of Spanish extraction, many of
them clustered in urban areas, dominated the Jewish communities of Eretz-Israel.

In this carefully researched study, David examines the lasting impression
made by these enterprising Jewish settlers on the commercial, social, and
intellectual life of the area under early Ottoman rule. Of particular interest
is his examination of the cities of Jerusalem and Safed and David's succinct
biographies of leading Jewish personalities throughout the region.

This first English translation of a ground-breaking Hebrew work provides
a comprehensive overview of a significant chapter in the history of Israel
and explores some of the factors that brought to it the best minds of the
age. Essential for scholars of late Medieval Jewish history, To Come to
the Land will also be an important resource for scholars of intellectual
history, as it provides background crucial to an understanding of the intellectual
flourishing of the period.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 324 pages
  • 154.94 x 233.68 x 22.86mm | 544.31g
  • Alabama, United States
  • English
  • 7 illustrations, 3 maps, 4 tables
  • 0817356436
  • 9780817356439

Review quote

"To Come to the Land spans the realms of economic history, demography, and intellectual life. It is an outstanding work of scholarship on a subject of both historical importance and contemporary significance. With this edition, the author has performed a vital service by acquainting the non-Hebrew reader and nonspecialist with materials normally known to scholars alone."--Jay Berkovitz, University of Massachusetts at Amherst "This is a book of the highest order of scholarship, synthesizing an enormous body of research, most of it available only in Hebrew, about the Jewish community in the Land of Israel during the century following the Expulsion from Spain. Especially valuable is the way the author shows the interconnections among Ottoman policy, economic realities, demographic upheavals, and cultural creativity."--Marc Saperstein, Washington University
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About Abraham David

Abraham David is Senior Researcher at the Jewish National and
University Library in Jerusalem and author of many books, including A Hebrew
Chronicle from Prague, c. 1615, also published by this press. Dena Ordan
is a free-lance translator in Jerusalem.
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