The Jewish people have been living in Israel for thousands of years. They’ve had a long tradition of creating beautiful works of art that reflect their faith and heritage.
The Birth of Judaism.
The first Jews were followers of the God Yahweh (YHWH) who lived in Canaan during the Bronze Age. Their religion was called “Judaism” because it began with the Hebrew word “Judah,” meaning “praise.” It’s believed that the earliest written records of the Torah were written by Moses and his brother Aaron.
The Rise of Rabbinic Culture.
Judaism spread throughout the Roman Empire after the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE. In the Middle Ages, Jews were expelled from Spain and Portugal and forced to live in ghettos. They were also persecuted in Germany and Eastern Europe. During the Renaissance, Jews were welcomed back into Western society.
The Golden Age of Hebrew Poetry.
The golden age of Hebrew poetry was between the 11th and 13th centuries. It was during this period that the first major works of Hebrew literature were written. These included the Book of Psalms, the Book of Job, the Book of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, Ruth, Lamentations, Esther, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, Chronicles, and the book of Jonah.
The High Middle Ages.
During the High Middle Ages (11th–13th century), Jews lived under Christian rule. They were forced to convert to Christianity, pay taxes, and live according to Christian laws. This led to the development of new forms of art and music.
In 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered America. He was looking for a route to India by sailing west across the Atlantic Ocean. Instead he found a new world with people who spoke different languages and had different customs than those in Europe. These differences made it difficult for Europeans to understand each other.
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