The Ottoman Empire and Judaism

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The reason the Jews went to the Ottoman Empire was because the Christians persecuted them because of their different beliefs. The Jews were so scared of what the Christians might do they wanted to settle in a safer place which the Ottomans offered them. The Ottomans offering them land was the best thing the Jews could have asked for. The Ottomans offered the Jews protection, offered them communal autonomy and tolerated their religious practices. The Ottomans at the time had a rule about non-Muslims having to pay a tax, which is called the Jitza. The Muslims considered Jews and Christians dhimmi or the people of the pact. The dhimmi we issued to pay the jitza, and where forced to follow these rules; prohibition against carrying fire arms, against riding horses, against building new houses or worship or even repairing old ones, against proselytism, against building homes higher than Muslim ones, and they must wear distinctive clothing. Even after all of these rules the Jewish community still thrived in the Ottoman Empire. The population of Jews in the Ottoman Empire was very distinct and was coming from different places. The most noticeable and most studied among the Jews in the Ottoman Empire were the Sephardim. The Sephardim had great political and cultural influence on the Ottoman Empire. The Jews became very valuable to the Ottomans because of the ties they had with Europe. Europeans brought new languages and technologies including the newest forms in medicine,

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