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Christians and Jews in Angevin England: The York Massacre of 1190, Narratives and Contexts

Posted on 24 April 2013

New publication from Sarah Rees-Jones and Sethina Watson

The mass suicide and murder of the men, women and children of the Jewish community in York on 16 March 1190 is one of the most scarring events in the history of Anglo-Judaism, and an aspect of England's medieval past which is widely remembered around the world. However, the York massacre was in fact only one of a series of attacks on communities of Jews across England in 1189-90; they were violent expressions of wider new constructs of the nature of Christian and Jewish communities, and the targeted outcries of local townspeople, whose emerging urban politics were enmeshed within the swiftly developing structures of royal government.
This new collection considers the massacre as central to the narrative of English and Jewish history around 1200. Its chapters broaden the contexts within which the narrative is usually considered and explore how a narrative of events in 1190 was built up, both at the time and in following years. They also focus on two main strands: the role of narrative in shaping events and their subsequent perception; and the degree of convivencia between Jews and Christians and consideration of the circumstances and processes through which neighbours became enemies and victims.
About the Editors
Sarah Rees Jones is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of History. She works on medieval urban history, with special interests in the history of citizenship and town planning. 
Sethina Watson is a Lecturer in the Department of History. She works on the religious and social history of the High Middle Ages in England.
The book is available to buy through all good bookshops, or direct from Boydell and Brewer.