Whether one is a republican, a royalist, or somewhere in-between, those who are interested in history will no doubt be interested in the upcoming Coronation. Coronations were important events for Jewish communities; they raised funds to be offered as gifts to the new monarch, in hope that he, in turn, would renew their privileges to settle and to work, and protects their lives and goods. But any big public gathering could also lead to violence, and so it did in 1189 at the Coronation of King Richard I: community representatives bearing gifts - alongside other well wishers - were abused, removed, and the violence spilled over into the streets of London. It is good to note the inclusive tone of the 2023 coronation with representatives and voices from across the the UK, and from its faith communities, Since the event falls on the Sabbath, arrangements have been made to accommodate the Chief Rabbi overnight, and to exclude recording of his address. God Save the Queen was translated into Hebrew:
History beckons in other ways too. On 4 June 2023 we open our anniversary year with a series of events across the country over the following months. These will be events online, visits to branches, public discussions, and more. As ever, in marking this felicitous event, the anniversary of the longest lived Jewish historical society, we are joined by members and organisations who are delighted to celebrate with us. This is a good occasion to consider offering a membership as a gift to a friend or family member, and so to continue the Society's work.
Some interesting events will start the year even before the June date. I am delighted to invite you to my own Queen Mary University of London, for the launch on 19 May 2023, to hear Professor John Tolan speak about his new book, a history of Jews in medieval England, with a reception to follow, all free of charge. Here is the link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-mark-of-cain-jews-in-english-society-in-the-thirteenth-century-tickets-569287633637
A visit to Queen Mary's campus will also allow you a glimpse of the Novo cemetery, opened by the Sephardic and Portuguese Community in 1733. I passed it yesterday in its spring glory.
Our branches are en essential part of JHSE, and their flourishing depends on the hard work and dedication of those who help organise activities, manage, funds, and communicate with JHSE Trustees. Hence I wish to welcome Roy Morron as the new secretary of the Liverpool Branch; Roy will join the Advisory Board of JHSE.