City in Castile, Spain. When Tariḳ ibn Zaid conquered the city in 711, he found Jews there, as in Toledo and other places, and gave the conquered city to them to guard. In the "fuero" (charter) which Alfonso VII. gave to the city in 1139, Jews were placed on an equality with the knights: two-thirds of them had to follow the king in battle, while the other third stayed behind for defense. Guadalajara had a considerable Jewish community in the thirteenth century, and in 1290 paid as much in taxes as Ciudad Real. It was very much reduced through the persecution of 1391 and through the enforced baptisms due to it, so that in 1476 it could hardly pay one-third of the former taxes. The number of Maranos in the city was so large that King Juan II. issued a command to the city to treat baptized Jews like persons who were born Christians and to give them official positions.
In 1482 a Jew established a Hebrew printing-press in Guadalajara, at which Solomon ben Moses Levi ibn Alḳabiẓ was engaged as printer and corrector. He brought out in that year an edition of David Ḳimḥi's commentary to the Later Prophets,and (c. 1482) Jacob ben Asher's Ṭur Eben ha-'Ezer. Meïr ben Solomon ben Sahulah, who carried on a correspondence with Solomon Adret and Samuel Motot, lived in Guadalajara, and Moses de Leon and Isaac ben Harun Sulaiman were born there. Many of the Jews who were driven out of Guadalajara in 1492 went to Algiers, where they had their own synagogue with a special ritual.
- Rios, Hist. i. 194, ii. 406, iii. 121;
- Ersch and Gruber, Encyc. section ii., part 28, p. 37;
- Sachs, Die Religiöse Poesie der Juden in Spanien, p. 327;
- Steinschneider, Cat. Bodl., col. 869;
- Habler, lconographie Iberique, p. 49.