From time to time, in our work of transcribing early Anglo Jewish community records, we have come across Hebrew words which translate as “From the Medina“. To our ill-informed minds, this was romantically suggestive of Morocco, or some other exotic North African or Arab city. and made quite a change from the habitual places of origin or residence, such as Amsterdam, Hamburg and The Hague, and the even more mundane English towns of Liverpool, Harwich and Deptford. Luckily, our learned friend and guide “The Professor” was able to put us right.
He advise that, when used in the context of these records, the expression. “From the Medina” denotes that the person lived outside the main Metropolis – in our case, invariably, London.
Thus, when we came across this record in some late 18th century burial records we are currently processing for Synagogue Scribes.
“1791 9 Adar shin, child Joseph Lehrburg from medina”,
We were able to identify both the family, and the place of domicile, from some existing burials on our sister site www.cemeteryscribes.co.uk.
The father of this child was Joseph SAMUEL. And his interesting, but rather less exotic, place of habitation? Not Fez or Marrakesh, but Hoddesdon, a small town in Hertfordshire, some 18 miles to the north of London.