A state of the German empire, bounded on the north by Bavaria and Hesse; on the east by Bavaria, Württemberg, and Hohenzollern; on the south by Switzerland, and on the west by Alsace-Lorraine and Rhenish Bavaria. Owing to the absence of any large or ancient cities in Baden, few Jews lived there in olden times. Among the places where persecutions took place may be mentioned especially Lauda on the Tauber (1235, 1298, 1337, 1349), Tauberbischofsheim (1235, 1298, 1337, 1349), Pforzheim (1267, 1349), Freiburg (1349), Bretten (1337, 1349), Ueberlingen (1322, 1349), Constance (1326, 1349), Heidelberg (1349), Ettlingen (1349), Durlach (1349). In consequence of the edict of King Wenzel, who canceled the debts owed to the Jews, the latter in many cities of Baden suffered greatly. In 1390 they were banished by Ruprecht II. from Heidelberg; in 1430 they were burned at Lindau, Ravensburg, and Ueberlingen; and in the following year they barely escaped a similar fate at Constance. In 1422 the emperor, for the purpose of exterminating heretics in Bohemia, sought to extort from the Jews the so-called "third penny." After 1524 many Jews found refuge in the margravate of Baden, but they were banished thence by the margrave Philipp in 1584, to return, however, in 1593. In 1550 there were resident in the electoral palatinate about 155 Jews; and in 1605 there were about 13 Jewish families in the margravate. In 1608 a general edict of banishment was issued against the Jews; but by the proclamation of 1809 they were finally recognized as forming an independent sect.

The administration of each congregation is conductedby the "Synagogenrath," which consists of from three to seven members. Several local synagogues constitute a synagogal district with its rabbi and elders. The district synagogues again are responsible to a so-called "Israelitischen Oberrath" (Jewish council); and this is directly responsible to the ministry of the interior, its expenses being defrayed out of the national treasury. Since 1860 the Jews of Baden have enjoyed equal rights with the other inhabitants. In 1901 they numbered 25,903 souls, distributed among fifteen rabbinical districts ("Rabbinatsbezirke").

  • Breslau, in Hebr. Bibl. 1870, p. 130;
  • Stern, Urkundliche Nachrichten aus Ueberlingen, p. 12;
  • Weech, Badische Gesch.;
  • Zehnter, in Zeitschrift für die Gesch. des Oberrheins, vols. xi., xv.;
  • Löwenstein, Gesch. der Juden in der Kurpfalz, passim.
G. A. F.
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