Between the Starost, the Mayor and the Parish Priest. Jewish Innkeepers in Mazovian Towns in Late 18th Century Cover Image
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Między starostą, burmistrzem i plebanem. Żydowscy arendarze w mazowieckich miastach u schyłku XVIII wieku
Between the Starost, the Mayor and the Parish Priest. Jewish Innkeepers in Mazovian Towns in Late 18th Century

Author(s): Paweł Fijałkowski
Subject(s): History
Published by: Żydowski Instytut Historyczny
Keywords: Jewish tenants; alcohol distilling; commerce; agriculture; livestock; Jewish-Christian relations

Summary/Abstract: The Jews were an element of a highly complicated system making up the urban organisms in old Poland. While they lived in the cities, they did not belong to the burgher community but as representatives of a separate estate, subordinated to royal officers. The burghers tolerated them at best, viewing them as dangerous business rivals. Meanwhile the noblemen and the clergy saw an opportunity to boost their incomes in the Jews' presence. This applied in particular to Jewish innkeepers, whose activity was as profitable as it was controversial in view of the divergent interests of the various groups making up the urban organism. This can be examined using the example of several Mazovian towns, in which Jewish innkeepers appeared in the last 18th century as representatives of economic interests of district authorities, monasteries and parish priests, and also of town councils. Quite often, they were the first members of a Jewish community in a town, whose growth was taking place in an air of conflict with the burghers. This adversely affected Jewish-Christian relations at a later time.

  • Issue Year: 252/2014
  • Issue No: 04
  • Page Range: 737-748
  • Page Count: 12
  • Language: Polish