Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Monday, 12 April 2021

Medieval Oxford Jewry

The Haaretz website has an interesting report about an excavation in Oxford that has revealed for the first time in this country archaeological evidence for specifically Jewish occupation of a house site in the medieval period. Although there are of course surviving properties known from records to have been owned by Jews, both in Oxford and, most famously, in Lincoln, this is evidence drawn from animal bones and cooking pits. The site of the household in St Aldate’s, known to have been home to part of the Oxford Jewish community before 1290, appears to have been clearly kosher from the absence of food residues of swine and other ‘unclean’ species from the diet of the one-time occupants.

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