Jewish Inscriptions of Western Europe: Volume 2, The City of Rome
Although there was a substantial Jewish population in Western Europe from at least the first century BC, literary evidence for it before the end of the sixth century AD is very sparse, amounting to a few mainly hostile references by Roman writers and some material of doubtful historical value in rabbinic and hagiographic sources. Knowledge of the Jewish communities of the West is therefore almost entirely dependent on inscriptions, which contain information on community organisation, the use of biblical texts and religious symbols, linguistic habits, naming practices and social status, and burial customs and beliefs about life after death. While Volume One provides ready access to the Jewish inscriptions from Italy and the islands, Spain and Gaul this second of two volumes concentrates on the inscriptions of the City of Rome. Hitherto it has been necessary to consult specialist publications to gain a complete picture of the inscriptions: this book fills a notable gap in the market.