After the publication in French, English and Arabic, “Jerusalem 1900. The Holy City at the Age of Possibilities” by Open Jerusalem director Vincent Lemire has been just released in Hebrew by Magnes Press.
Open Jerusalem core team member Falestin Naili will give a lecture on Tuesday, 27 February, at the Institut français de Jordanie (IFJ) in Amman. The conference is entitled “The First World War in Jerusalem: The End of an Era?” and will be based on the analysis of the Jerusalem Municipal Council minutes and memoirs and diaries from that period.
READ MORE on the archival discovery, transcription and English translation of the Jerusalem Municipal Council minutes carried out in the framework of the Open Jerusalem project.
Les années de la Première Guerre mondiale constituent un tournant majeur dans l’histoire de Jérusalem, que les registres lacunaires du conseil municipal ne permettent d’élucider que croisés avec des mémoires et des journaux privés. Entre les fléaux naturels, les épidémies et le changement politique survenu en 1915, avec l’arrivée au pouvoir de gouverneur ottoman Çemal Pacha, la vie des habitants de la ville changea drastiquement, jusqu’à la reddition de décembre 1917.
Tuesday, 27 February 2018, 6:30pm, Institut français de Jordanie (Amman, Jabal al-Weibdeh)
The conference will be held in French and Arabic
On Tuesday 13 February Vincent Lemire, Open Jerusalem director, and Yann Potin, Open Jerusalem core team member, will give a lecture entitled “Opening the archives of Jerusalem: for a world history of the Holy City” during the workshop “Inside the Cradle of History” jointly organised by the Centre de recherche français à Jérusalem and the Center for Jerusalem studies at Al-Quds University. It will take place at the Old City campus, Damascus Gate, Aqabet Al-Sheikh Rihan.
The workshop is open to the public.
Abdul-Hameed Al-Kayyali, Open Jerusalem core team member, and Hassan Hassan, Open Jerusalem research collaborator, are the authors of the article on the Hebrew press in Late Ottoman Jerusalem entitled “القدس نهاية الفترة العثمانية في عيون الصحافة العبرية: مقاربة نظرية ونقدية”.
READ IT on the IFPO ACADEMIC BLOG
Benjamin Suc (Limonade&Co), Maria Chiara Rioli (UPEM/Open Jerusalem) and Louise Corvasier (UPEM/Open Jerusalem) are among the speakers at the fourth edition of the annual Digital Humanities conference organized by the Maison européenne des sciences de l’homme et de la société (MESHS). This year’s edition is co-organized with the Luxembourg Centre for Contemporary and Digital History (C2DH) of the University of Luxembourg. The theme is: “(De)constructing Digital History“. The conference will take place in November 27-29, 2017 in Lille, France.
The paper presentation will be devoted to “Le passé numérique d’une ville. Enjeux et potentialités de digital history à travers le projet Open Jerusalem“.
Maria Chiara Rioli, Open Jerusalem core team member, and Marion Blocquet, Open Jerusalem research collaborator, will be among the speakers at the conference entitled “In partibus fidelium”. Missions du Levant et connaissance de l’Orient chrétien (XIXe-XXIe siècles), organized by the research program MissMO. Missions chrétiennes et sociétés du Moyen-Orient : organisations, identités, patrimonialisation (XIXe-XXIe siècles).
Their paper presentation on “The characters of Jerusalem. The Franciscan Printing Press and the Terra Santa Review (1921-1940)” is part of the Open Jerusalem research project on the history of the Franciscan Printing Press.
DOWNLOAD the PROGRAM
READ the article «Family libraries and printing presses in Jerusalem (1840-1940): Production, circulation and reception of multilingual documents» (L. Dakhli, V. Lemire and A. Cohen)
Leyla Dakhli, CNRS researcher and Open Jerusalem core team member, will participate today to the panel Gendered Transformations: “New Women” of the Mandate Period with a presentation about Women at Work (Jerusalem, 1920-1936) at MESA Annual Meeting.
READ THE PRESENTATION OF THE PANEL Gendered Transformations: “New Women” of the Mandate Period
The new issue of the Revue des mondes musulmans et de la Méditerranée is out. It includes the article by Falestin Naili, Open Jerusalem core team member, on “Chronique d’une mort annoncée ? La municipalité ottomane de Jérusalem dans la tourmente de la Première Guerre mondiale” (Chronicle of a Death Foretold? Jerusalem’s Ottoman municipality in the torment of the First World War).
L’atelier d’automne du projet ERC “Open Jerusalem” aura lieu les 25-26 septembre 2017 à l’Ecole française de Rome. L’équipe-coeur travaillera sur l’avancée de la base de donnée AtoM, sur la configuration du futur portail web et sur la préparation du colloque final prévu à l’été 2018. Elle présentera également les premiers résultats du projet aux membres de l’Ecole intéressés. L’atelier n’est pas ouvert au public.
The Fall workshop of the ERC project “Open Jerusalem” will be held at the French School of Rome on 25-26 September 2017. The core team will work on the development of the AtoM database, the conception of the future web platform and the preparation of the final conference scheduled for Summer 2018. The team will also present the first outputs of the project to the members of the French School of Rome. The workshop is not open to the public.
During the ‘Labex-Week 2017 Futurs Urbains’ (11-15 September 2017, Cité Descartes, Champs-sur-Marne), on Thursday 14 September Vincent Lemire (ACP, ERC OpenJerusalem director) will speak during the panel on ‘Usages de l’histoire et devenirs urbains’ [‘Uses of urban history and developments’] about ‘Décrire ou numériser les archives de la citadinité? Réflexions épistémologiques sur le projet ERC Open-Jerusalem’ [Describing or digitizing ‘citadinité’ archives? Epistemological Reflections on the ERC project Open Jerusalem]
In the very early centuries of the Christian era, the Syriac orthodox Christians – also called Jacobites – settled in Jerusalem, in the so-called house of Virgin Mary in the Armenian quarter: this monastery dedicated to St Mark the Evangelist became the headquarter of the Archbishopric which had never been one of the most important centers of the Jacobite church; its original location was indeed in the Tur ‘Abdin, in the Ottoman province of Diyarbakir (East Anatolia). But during the XIXth and XXth centuries, the small community had changed significantly moving from a handful of believers with a few pilgrims arrived from time to time in the Old City, to a refugees center welcoming the survivors of the Seyfo, the genocide committed in the Tur ‘Abdin during World War I. Besides, their dependency to Armenian authorities from which they failed to release, turned gradually into their marginalisation in Arab Palestine.
Thanks to Open Jerusalem team and Father Shimon, the librarian of Saint-Mark monastery, I have studied the baptismal register of the community, from 1831 to 1948. In fact, this document is a compilation of several census produced between the Tanzîmât period and the beginning of the British Mandate on Palestine: as it is explained in the opening text of the register, a Syriac orthodox of the community named Sulayman Jalma, began to collect all the papers related to baptized children in Jerusalem and Bethlehem in 1931 and ended his work in 1932. Then, the following monks continued to record the new baptized believers until today.
The register gathers hundreds of middle format pages, in which columns and headings are printed. The garshuni language used to complete the columns, is the transcription of the Arabic in Syriac letters; between 1831 and 1948 few filled lines are written in Arabic. The reverse of that trend is observed after World War II. The information completed in the register deal with the date of the registration, these of birth and baptism, the names and places of origin of the baptized children, of their parents and godfathers/mothers and of the priest who celebrated the baptism.
Because of the lack of others available archives, I have focused on this register and on the studies published by Andrew Palmer about the Syriac inscriptions of Saint-Mark monastery. Thanks to Flavia Ruani’s translation of the register from garshuni to English, I have first studied statistically the demography of the community at that period. I have also identified the social networks organized around godparenthood and kinship, which were indeed very efficient integration mechanisms. My field survey cargried out in Jerusalem with the cooperation of the community and with that of the CRFJ enabled me to overcome difficulties I encountered, like the unmentioned citizenship or the political involvement of the Syriac believers during the interwar period. Paying attention to the importance of spiritual identity and ritual behaviours, I have tried to better understand how these Christians succeeded in being a real community fitted in well in Jerusalem, despite the impact of political and social changes they went through.
Read Antoinette Ferrand’s full dissertation (Ecole Normale Supérieure, Lyon): “La diaspora syriaque-orthodoxe de Jérusalem (1831-1948). Pèlerins, réfugiés et fabrique communautaire à l’époque ottomane et mandataire”
by Orlin Sabev
After two prospections missions conducted at the National Library of Bulgaria (Sofia) by Louise Corvasier, Vincent Lemire and Yann Potin (December 2016; June 2017) and with the help and support of Milena Koleva-Zvancharova, Head of the Oriental Collections Department of the NLB, Open Jerusalem research collaborators Orlin Sabev and Stoyanka Kenderova completed the archival description of the two important fonds (283 and 283A) for the history of Ottoman Jerusalem.
The prevailing number of documents related to the history of Jerusalem in the Ottoman period, preserved at present in the Oriental Department of the National Library of Jerusalem in the Ottoman period, preserved at present in the Oriental Department of the National Library “Sts Cyril and Methodius” (Sofia, Bulgaria) established in 1878, are organized in two archival fonds: no. 283 (comprising 7 archival units) and no. 283A (comprising 469 archival units). The Oriental Department houses about 500,000 archival units (comprising about 1 million folios) dating from the Ottoman period. They are organized in several collections, the biggest of which is the collection of topographic funds organized according to the place with which the documents are related to.
As part of the documents preserved in Sofia are originating from the Bulgarian lands that were under Ottoman rule from the late fourteenth century to 1878, the history of most of the documents dates back to the early 1930s when the authorities of the recently proclaimed Republic of Turkey – known for their rejection of the Sultan’s rule and the Ottoman legacy – sold large amount of Ottoman documents (being charged in several wagons) to a Bulgarian paper mill in order to be recycled for paper production. When the first wagons arrived the factory owners noticed that the cargo is consisted of Ottoman documents and asked expertise by the Oriental Department. After confirming their historical and archival value all the survived documents were transferred to Sofia to be preserved in the Oriental Department. Since the documents were sent from Constantinople and mostly from the depositories of the former Ottoman ministry of finances they deal mainly with financial issues and are related to all the former Ottoman provinces (in the Balkans, Anatolia, the Arabian peninsula, and North Africa). This explains why documents related to Ottoman Jerusalem (mainly dealing with financial issues) are now to be found in Sofia, Bulgaria.
Another point is the process of the organization of these documents into archival funds formed according to the previously existing Ottoman provinces. The organization was executed in two stages: at the first stage over 1,000 topographical funds have been organized in alphabetical order, while at the second stage funds with similar enumeration with attached “A” have been added, respectively. These funds include mainly documents written in Ottoman Turkish, while those in Arabic have been separated in a special collection of Arabic documents. Hence fonds 283 and 283A contain documents related to Ottoman Jerusalem. Since the key word used by the archivists in the distribution of the documents was the place name appearing in them, the fonds include both documents sent from Jerusalem to the Ottoman capital Constantinople, as well as drafts of documents sent from Constantinople to the local authorities in Jerusalem. Although most of the documents deal directly with Jerusalem proper some documents are related to other places located within the province of Jerusalem such as Jaffa, Hebron, Bethlehem, etc. Some documents are mistakenly distributed to the Jerusalem funds because of the similarity between the Arabic/Ottoman name of Jerusalem – Kuds/Kudüs, and the expression “Kuddise Sırruh” (“May God bless him”) used for the famous mystic Jalal ad-din Rumi (1207–1273) whose tomb is in Konya, Central Anatolia. The same is true also for some other documents in which the mosques and waqfs of Rumi are mentioned.
The documents of fonds 283A are distributed in 469 archival units (that is, folders), put in 7 boxes. Most of the folders contain just one document, but some contain two to three, in rare cases even more documents. Some of the documents are torn and therefore they are just fragments simply because the initial purpose of their transportation to Bulgaria was to be recycled in a paper mill as said above. Some other documents are in a poor condition, the edges being rotten and the text partly illegible. Therefore during the exploration of the fonds 283A some damaged documents had been already taken out for chemical restoration and hence I was unable to include them in the inventory.
The documents of fonds 283A are dating from the mid-16th to the early 20th century. The earliest document is dating from 1550 (fragment of a register of zeamets in the district of Doha), while the latest one is from 1908 (related to revenue collection), respectively. The 19th-century documents prevail, however the number of the 17th- and 18th-century documents is also considerable. In terms of content almost all of them deal with financial issues related mostly to incomes from taxes, expenses for the officers who guarded the fortress of Jerusalem, as well as some other minor fortresses in the region, and transfer of waqf posts with the respective salary from one holder (mostly because of his death) to another holder. Having this in mind, the documents of fonds “Jerusalem” preserved in the National Library in Sofia could be useful for studying the socio-economic history of Jerusalem and its province during the Ottoman period.
www.nationallibrary.bg/wp/?page_id=258 (only Bulgarian version is available)
İsmet Binark and Seyit Ali Kahraman, eds., Bulgaristan’daki Osmanlı Evrakı (İstanbul: T.C. Başbakanlık Devlet Arşivleri Genel Müdürlüğü, 1994).