Some New Facts About the Portsmouth Jewish Community

MY attention was drawn to the Portsmouth Circumcision Register (1762-1807) by Mr. Cecil Roth, who, in a lecture on “The Portsmouth Community and its Historical Background,” said, “I have made a full abstract of this curious docu? ment and I trust that the opportunity of publishing it will not be long delayed.”2 I consulted Mr. Roth and he encouraged me to publish it. I have left the text of the manuscript unaltered, as the author, Reb Leib Aleph (1723-1814), left it. However, I have translated it into English and have written an introduction in order to make its contents accessible to those who are unfamiliar with Hebrew, the language in which it was originally written.

This Circumcision Register3 is the oldest historical record, apart from the Congre? gational Seal (1747) and three Ketuboth of 1754, 1758 and 1761, of the Portsmouth Jewish Community. It starts on the 8th Tammuz, 1762,

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