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1096 May 27, MAYENCE (Germany)

Count Emicho entered Mayence. Approximately 1200 Jews took refuge in the Episcopal Palace and, seeing no other escape from forced conversion, chose suicide using ritual slaughter knives. Each family head killed his wife and children, with the leaders killing themselves last. The idea of suicide, normally abhorrent, was considered acceptable or even preferable under these circumstances. One Jew by the name of Isaac, his two daughters and a friend called Uriah allowed themselves to be baptized. Within a few weeks Isaac, who was remorseful of his act, killed his daughters and burned his own house. He and Uriah went to the local synagogue, locked themselves in and burned it down. A large part of the city was destroyed.




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