An Act To Permit Persons Professing The Jewish Religion, To Be Naturalized By Parliament. London. Parliament.
An Act To Permit Persons Professing The Jewish Religion, To Be Naturalized By Parliament

An Act To Permit Persons Professing The Jewish Religion, To Be Naturalized By Parliament

London: Thomas Baskett, 1753. First edition. Hardcover. 29.5 x 17.8 cm. Three leaves. On April 3, 1753, the Jewish Naturalization Bill, popularly referred to as the “Jew Bill” was introduced in the House of Lords. The bill allowed "persons professing the Jewish Religion" who had been born outside of England to" be naturalized by Parliament, without receiving the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper." The purpose of this legislation was not the general acceptance of Jews into Britain; naturalization would still require the passage of a private Act of Parliament which would be in reach of only a few of the wealthiest of England's 8,000 Jews. The bill passed the House of Lords on April 16, and then made it through the House of Commons on May 22. Although it met with little initial dispute inside or outside of Parliament, the Act elicited a tremendous popular furor immediately after its passage: pamphlets and prints, sermons, petitions, and newspaper coverage argued over the significance of the act throughout the summer and fall of 1753. Jewish peddlers were insulted and harassed in the streets and the murder of Jonas Levin in November of 1753 may have resulted from the passions sparked by the bill's passage. In that month, immediately after Parliament reconvened, the Act was repealed, the repeal passing the House of Lords on November 22 and the House of Commons on November 28. All three leaves fresh and clean. Beige cloth portfolio, red leather front cover label lettered in gilt. Fine. Item #22215

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