By: Joseph Jacobs
City, borough, and capital of the county of Somersetshire, England. Though as old as Roman times—in which it was known as "Aquaeæ, Solis," from its hot springs—Jews do not appear to have resided there until quite recently. It is not mentioned in the twelfth century; and the French Jew who recommends a lad to go to England warns him against Bath as "clearly at the very gates of Hell" (Richard of Devizes, "Chronicon," ed. Howlett, p. 436). In the thirteenth century there was no archa at Bath, and therefore no Jews could live there (see Archa). The present congregation was founded about 150 years ago, but has always been overshadowed by the more flourishing congregations of the neighboring city of Bristol. The synagogue is in Corn street.
- Jewish Year Book, 1901, p. 104.