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SWORN DECLARATIONS OF PRAGUE JEWISH FAMILIES, 1748-1749 (1751).
EDITION OF A SOURCE ON THE RETURN OF JEWS EXPELLED BY MARIA THERESA


The Jewish Museum in Prague has recently published a unique source on the history of Prague Jews, which supplements the series of Jewish population lists produced by the National Archives in Prague.







The Jews of Prague spent the difficult years of 1745-1748 in the countryside, where they had been exiled on the basis of an unsubstantiated accusation of high treason. Sworn declarations (Fassionen) were made by the heads of Jewish families after returning to Prague following the repeal of their expulsion order. Put together for the registration requirements of the Jewish self-government, these declarations are now kept in the Archives of the Jewish Museum in Prague. In total the museum has 1,473 such declarations dating from the main period of return for the Jewish community. These declarations were, in fact, a substitute for the official comprehensive list of Prague Jews – no comparable document of state provenance has been preserved for the years 1729-1794. The introductory study provides a brief overview of the history of Jewish expulsion and return and details the structure of the declaration form. In addition to a list of family members and servants, the form also contained information about the occupation of the family head and about the ownership and location of each house. The information provided in the declarations is, above all, a key source for private and professional genealogists; in addition, it enables us to study various questions relating to historical demography, social and economic history and topography.

This edition has been put together by Lucie B. Petrusová, a specialist archivist at the museum, and Alexandr Putík, a specialist researcher at the museum’s department of Jewish history and Jewish studies. It also includes an index of personal and place names, as well as a small illustrated supplement.

In Czech with an English résumé, 342 pp., 30 cm
ISBN 978-80-87366-22-6
Price: 300 CZK /13 EUR /16 USD

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