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The grant stipulated that henceforth all Jews in Ireland would be responsible to de Rivall as their “keeper in all things touching the king”.

While no direct evidence is known to exist, historians believe that when the Jews were expelled from England in 1290, they probably had to leave Ireland as well.

“When the clan came to Ireland, they would not let the Jews stay in cities overnight, so the clan became mobile, living in horse-drawn caravans, going from town to town, selling livestock, mostly horses.

They were not considered religious Christians, but Christians nevertheless.

Yet their idiosyncratic traditions included elaborate family meals on Friday nights, with the lighting of candles and a prayer.

Nearly 100 years later, English accounts mention a certain “Josce Jew of Gloucester” as having financed an expedition from England to Ireland in defiance of a prohibition by King Henry II who forbade the expedition and later fined “Josce” 100 shillings for bankrolling it.

A genuine community appears to have been up and running by 1232 when King Henry III granted Peter de Rivall the office of Treasurer and Chancellor of the Irish Exchequer, supervisor of the king’s coasts and ports, as well as custodian of the “King’s Jews” in Ireland.