Jewish Naturalization Act 1753

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The Jewish Naturalization Act 1753 was an Act of Parliament (26 Geo. 2, c. 26) of the Parliament of Great Britain, which received Royal Assent on 7 July 1753 but was repealed in 1754 (27 Geo 2, c. 1) due to widespread opposition to its provisions.[1]

During the Jacobite rising of 1745, the Jews had shown particular loyalty to the government. Their chief financier, Sampson Gideon, had strengthened the stock market, and several of the younger members had volunteered in the corps raised to defend London. Possibly as a reward, Henry Pelham in 1753 brought in the Jew Bill of 1753, which allowed Jews to become naturalized by application to Parliament. It passed the Lords without much opposition, but on being brought down to the House of Commons, the Tories made a great outcry against this "abandonment of Christianity", as they called it. The Whigs, however, persisted in carrying out at least one part of their general policy of religious toleration, and the bill was passed and received the royal assent (26 Geo. II., cap. 26).

German Jews[edit]

While the Sephardim chiefly congregated in London as the centre of international commerce, Jews immigrating from Germany and Poland settled for the most part in the seaports of the south and west, such as Falmouth, Plymouth, Liverpool, Bristol, etc., as pawnbrokers and small dealers. From these centres it became their custom to send out hawkers every Monday with packs to the neighbouring villages; and in this way connections were made with some of the inland towns, in which they began to settle, as Canterbury, Chatham, and Cambridge, not to mention Manchester and Birmingham. Traders of this type, while not of such prominence as the larger merchants of the capital, came in closer touch with English life; and may have helped to allay some of the prejudice which had been manifested so strongly during 1753.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Williams, Hywel (2005). Cassell's Chronology of World History. Weidenfeld & Nicolson. p. 316. ISBN 0-304-35730-8. 

Further reading[edit]

  • David S. Katz, Philo-Semitism and the Readmission of the Jews to England, 1603-1655 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1982)
  • David S. Katz, The Jews in the History of England, 1485-1850 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1994)

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