9 November - Not a good day for Jews ....

The Romans declared the anniversary of terrible events, such as their defeat at the Battle of Arausio (6 October), their defeat at the Battle of Allia (18 July), etc., to be dies nefasti, or black days.

I had planned to mention that today is the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht - when the Nazi thugs decided that a pogrom was in order, destroyed Jewish property and synagogues (see photo), and sent 30,000 Jewish Germans to concentration camps.

But then I looked at other events that took place on the 9th November, and realised that it was not a particularly good day for Jews, and deserves to be a 'cursed' or 'black' day.

If you go back a few centuries, for example to the 9th November 694, it gets even worse. I thought Spain in 1492 was bad, but on that date the Seventeenth Council of Toledo was held, convened by Ergica king of the Visigoths in Spain. The 12th and 16th Councils had been pretty bad (forced conversion and baptism or expulsion; more taxes for Jews, which might have been difficult for them to pay since their property was also confiscated unless they converted), but at the 17th Council it was decided that they had not been persecuted enough. The eight cannon announced that all Jews were henceforth slaves (except children under the age of seven, who were to be baptised and brought up Christian).

This law seems only to have been applied to Visigoth lands in Spain, not in the area they called Narbonensis - roughly modern Languedoc-Roussillon (the area conspiracy theorists like to call Septimania, which was far smaller than the Roman province of Gallia Norbonensis). The map from Wiki shows Visigoth lands circa. 700.

This capital is in the church of San Pedro de la Nave in Campillo, founded by Ergica circa 680, before he became king. I noticed that Ergica is on a lot of 'white supremacist' web sites thanks to the 17th Council of Toledo. What they forget to add to the 'good' Christian story is that within two decades the Visigothic kingdon was over, and Spain had fallen to the invading Muslims.

More recently Chaim Weizmann, the first President of Israel, passed away on the 9th November 1952.

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