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Elul 12

In 1263, King James I of Aragon ordered a Church-sponsored censorship of Hebrew writings. This was an unfortunate theme throughout the Middle Ages: Twenty years earlier, Pope Gregory IX initiated the burning of Hebrew books, and persuaded French King Louis IX to burn some 10,000 copies of the Talmud (24 wagon loads) in Paris. In 1592, Pope Clement VIII condemned the Talmud and other Hebrew writings as "obscene," "blasphemous" and "abominable" -- and ordered them all to be seized and burned. Despite attempts to burn our books, however, the light of Jewish tradition shines brightly till today.

Article 339 of 356 in the series Day in Jewish History

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