Ancient/Medieval Jewish History

How the Crusades Affected Medieval Jews in Europe and Palestine

Jews got entangled in the Christian quest to recapture the Holy Land from Muslims.

From Golden to Grim: Jewish Life in Muslim Spain

The complex political situation in Muslim Spain impacted Jewish social and cultural life there.

Inquisition in Spain

How Jews went from protected minority to persona non grata in just a few years.

Creating the Jewish Canon

The 24 books that make up with the Jewish Bible evolved over time in a process that reveals what the ancient rabbis considered authoritative -- and what they didn't.

The Geonic Period

During this time Babylonia was the spiritual and political center of Diaspora Jewry, and Jewish communities looked to the Geonim for authoritative teachings on halachic matters.

What Eastern European Jews Did on Christmas

A day to play games and avoid Torah study.

Exodus: History or Mythic Tale?

A biblical scholar reviews the historical claims of the biblical book of Exodus.

Medieval Jewish-Christian Relations

Daily relations between Christians and Jews in the Middle Ages.

Early Medieval Halachic Texts

In the early Middle Ages, leading scholars across Europe and North Africa produced different genres of legal writings.

Rabbi Isaac Alfasi: Rif

A legal code for the Jews of medieval North Africa and Spain.

Moshe (Moses) Isserles: Rema

Rema's glosses emended and enhanced the Shulchan Aruch.