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C. 350 JEWISH COMMUNITY IN BUKHARA (Central Asia)

The first definite evidence of Jewish presence in Bukhara is related in the Babylonian Talmud (Av. Zar. 31b) regarding an amora (Samuel bar Bisna) who lived in the town of Margwan, i.e., Margiana, the medieval Merv (now the region of Mari, the Soviet Turkmen republic). There are some archeological remains which suggest a Jewish presence as early as the first century. The Jews from the area of Tajikistan were later referred to as Bukharim, named for the Emir of Bukhara.


351 June, A SERIES OF PERSECUTIONS (Eretz Israel)

And local violence erupted under the corrupt rule of Gallus, brother-in-law of Constantius II. Beginning in Sepphoris under Patricius, it spread to Tiberias, and Lod. Many towns including the above were destroyed, and with them the talmudic academies. This blow resulted in the further weakening of the centers of Jewish learning in Eretz Israel.


352 - 427 RAV ASHI (Babylon)

First to compile the Babylonian Talmud. He did this orally since it was still considered unlawful to write it down. He renovated the academy at Sura, whose prestige had declined since the death of Rava in 352. Rav Ashi re-established its authority, and served as its head for nearly fifty-two years.


353 July 3, EMPEROR CONSTANTIUS II

Issued a decree confiscating the property of anyone who converts from Christianity to Judaism.


354 - 430 ST. AUGUSTINE

Bishop of Hippo (North Africa), called Jewry a corruption and proclaimed eternal Jewish guilt for the death of Jesus.


359 HILLEL II (Eretz Israel)

Issued the Jewish calendar based on the lunar year. Previously, only the Sanhedrin could announce the new month and oncoming festivals. Due to the dispersion, every individual had to be able to determine the exact days for himself.




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