Travels In Morocco - Volume 2 of 2 - By James Richardson


It is to be hoped that a better day is dawning for North African Jews.
The Governments of France and - Page 7
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It Is To Be Hoped That A Better Day Is Dawning For North African Jews. The Governments Of France And England Can Do Much For Them In Morocco.

The Jews of the Atlas formed the subject of some of Mr. Davidson's literary labours; I have made further inquiries and shall give the reader some account of them, adding that portion of Mr. Davidson's information which was borne out by further investigation.

The Atlas Jews are physically, if not morally, superior to their brethren who reside among the Moors. They are dispersed over the Atlas ranges, and have all the characteristics of mountaineers. They enjoy, like their neighbours, the Berbers and Shelouhs, a species of quasi-independence of the Imperial authority, but they usually attach themselves to certain Berber chieftains who protect them, and whose standards they follow.

These are the only Jews in Mahometan countries of whom I have heard as bearing arms. They have, however, their own Sheiks, to whose jurisdiction all domestic matters are referred. They wear the same attire as the mountaineers, and are not distinguishable from them, they do not address the Moors by the term of respect and title "Sidi," but in the same way as the Moors and Arabs when they accost each other. They speak the Shelouh language.

Mr. Davidson mentions some curious circumstances about these Jews, and of their having a city beyond the Atlas, where three or four thousand are living in perfect freedom, and cultivating the soil, which they have possessed since the time of Solomon.

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