¶ 1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 Protection taxes in the early modern period were collected in two different fashions depending on the municipality. Often Jews were responsible individually for paying their family’s tax directly to the tax office (Rentamt). This was the case in Stühlingen; in other jurisdictions, the Jewish community had to pay their taxes collectively. Either the rabbi or the community trustees (Parnas, Barnosse) were charged with collecting the taxes from the community members, often according to their ability to pay.13 A rare mixture of these two fundamental tax collection policies is found in some Bavarian communities, such as Floss and Hürben.14 There, the Jewish community was, from the standpoint of tax collection, divided into two subgroups. The first, called ‘the conditional twelve’ (bedingte Zwölf), were taxed collectively; they constituted essentially the first-born descendants of the first twelve Jewish families in the village. The second group, called ‘the unconditionals’ (unbedingt), were taxed individually. Belonging to the first group seemed to have been socially desirable, for unconditional Jews clamoured to move into the conditional group whenever a slot became vacant, despite a higher average tax burden.
¶ 2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 Why would the wealthier Jews agree to a scheme that taxed them more severely than their less well-off brethren? Sociological research demonstrates a distinct benefit of ethnic concentration.15 Such an advantage of concentration may well have motivated the wealthier community members to take on a higher share of the tax for everyone’s benefit. However, excessive ethnic concentration invites hostility from the host population16 and thus again threatens social stability.
¶ 3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0 Taxing each Jew individually according to a fixed schedule could lead to serious hardships for the poor. Occasionally, the authorities would show some leniency. Yochanan (Hönlin Y1), a poor religion teacher, had his tax set originally at 10 fl. When he could not pay that much, it was reduced to 5 fl., and in 1668 he did not have to pay tax at all, ‘as long as he would not engage in any commercial activity’ [R4186]. The tax was also forgiven occasionally for poor widows and very old men. But conversely, Jews could be evicted if they became unable to pay their tax. This was the fate of Joseph Gugenheimb, Sandel’s son-in-law, who had to leave Stühlingen in 1739 and move in with his son, who lived elsewhere [R1144].
¶ 4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0
13Mordstein, Selbstbewusste Untertänigkeit, 302; Ullmann, Nachbarschaft und Konkurrenz, 107.
14Höpfinger, Die Judengemeinde von Floss, 53; StAA, VÖ, lit. 240, Urbarium der VÖ, Herschaft Hürbi, fol. 108r.
15Driedger and Church, “Residential Segregation,”
16Quillian, “Prejudice as a Response,”
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