Safed: From the Musta’arabim to Modern Times, with Ami Barr
ENGLISH CORNER, CON LINDA JIMÉNEZ – This week’s trivia question: What is a “batea” and what is it used for?
Safed is the oldest and largest town in Israel’s Upper Galilee. The Jerusalem Talmud mentions it as one of five elevated spots where fires lit to announce the New Moon and festivals during the Second Temple period, from the 4th century BCE until 70 CE. In the 12th century CE Safed was a fortified city in the Crusaders’ Kingdom of Jerusalem.
There are numerous tombs of sages from the Talmudic period (before the 7th century) in the surrounding area and it has become a place of annual pilgrimage for Israelis.
Ami Barr lives on a kibbutz in the Upper Galilee. He is a historian and archaeologist with a special interest in the Talmudic period (from the 1st to the 6th centuries CE) and after the arrival of Jews from Spain beginning in the 14th century. This week, Ami is speaking with us about the importance Safed has had in Jewish history since medieval times.