IMC 2018: Sessions

Session 146: The Medieval Jewish Craftsmen: Fact or Fiction?

Monday 2 July 2018, 11.15-12.45

Organiser:Maria Stürzebecher, Kulturdirektion, Landeshauptstadt Erfurt
Moderator/Chair:Maria Stürzebecher, Kulturdirektion, Landeshauptstadt Erfurt
Paper 146-aStones, Masons, Marks: 'Mason's Marks' and Other Signs on Medieval Jewish Gravestones Revisited
(Language: English)
Stefanie Fuchs, Institut für Europäische Kunstgeschichte, Universität Heidelberg
Index terms: Archaeology - Artefacts, Hebrew and Jewish Studies
Paper 146-bWhat Do We Know about Jewish Goldsmiths and Jewish Seal Engravers in the Middle Ages?
(Language: English)
Andreas Lehnertz, Arye Maimon-Institut für Geschichte der Juden, Universität Trier
Index terms: Daily Life, Hebrew and Jewish Studies

The significant participation of Jewish people in medieval Europe’s everyday culture is common knowledge in modern Jewish Studies. We know that Jews used the same objects as Christians did – in general it is assumed that most of these objects were made by Christian craftsmen. However, written sources as well as recent archaeological findings suggest that Jewish craftsmen should be taken into consideration, too. In multidisciplinary approaches, this session focuses on new material on Jewish handicrafts. It will point out the difference between crafts essentially needed for an efficient Jewish community (such as butchers for kosher meat), and professions usually identified with – but contrary to older research not limited to – medieval guilds, for instance those of masons, goldsmiths and seal engravers.