A Hebrew Elegy on the York Martyrs of 1190

It is generally known that the Hebrew sources for the history of the Jews in medieval England are extremely sparse. The chronicler Ephraim of Bonn gives a poignant, but not in every respect accurate, account of the massacres of 1189-90 1 : and historians of a later generation reproduce a legendary story of the Expulsion of the Jews by Edward I, partly deriving as it seems from a lost work of the polemist and grammarian Profiat Duran and partly from the Fortalitium Fidei of the Franciscan Alfonso de Espana.2 Except for one or two oblique allusions, this is almost all. Any new material that comes to light is therefore all the more valuable.

century ago, Zunz called attention to two Hebrew elegies on the English massacres at the beginning of the reign of Richard I. One of them, by R. Menachem ben Jacob, was presented (as far as the portion

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