Distribution of Jews in Iberia


Several maps were found on http://www.equintanilla.com/documentos/sefarad4/t3_maphisto.html. They give a good impression on the historic changes in Iberia.

The early period

In the early period after the arrival of the Islamic rulers, the population of the Jews was near the location of the Islamic rulers in the cities.

The massacres in 1391

The position between the Jews and the Christians became harder and harder in the 14th century. The map shows the location of the massacres in 1391. The massacres were mainly in the large cities. The result was that this was the first period of Jews changing religion and moving away. Moving away was probably the case both to abroad and to smaller villages.

Distribution of Synagogues before 1492

This maps shows the distribution of the Synagogues in Iberia before 1492 [Francisco Cantera Burgos "Sinagogas Españolas" con especial estudio de la de Cordoba y la Toledana de el transito 1955]. One can see that the synagogues locations are more in the north. This is the index of the book of Francisco Cantera Burgos, in which he describes the Synagogues of 117 villages and cities, which are also indicated on his map. The book gives interesting architectural aspects of the Synagogues, as well as maps of the Synagogues.

Notice that the popular version of the map misses several villages.

All Synagogues are described in the book. It is likely that there were several more, which were not found or reported by Francisco Cantera Burgos.

The reproduction of locations of Synagogues in Spain until 1492.

Change of power in Iberia

The cities of Cordoba, Sevilla and Valencia were the important cities during the Islamic period of Iberia. This area was taken over in the 13th century. As one can see, the change of power took about 5 centuries.

From "Historical Atlas" by William R. Shepherd, New York, Henry Holt and Company, 1923.