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By John Y.B. Hood
Hood's learn contends that Aquinas's writings stay proof against or skeptical of anti-Jewish developments in thirteenth-century theology. Aquinas units out just to make clear and systematize obtained theological and canonistic teachings at the Jews.
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Wealthy Jews also provided venture capital for trading voyages and occasionally loaned sizable sums to princes and monasteries. Eminent Jews were sometimes employed as clerks, tax collectors, or salaried officials in the emerging political bureaucracies, though this was more common in Spain than in France, England, or the Empire. But prior to noo, most European Jews were not bureaucrats, physicians, or international merchants. Nor were they farmers, though in Provence, southern Italy, and even northern Europe some Jews worked the land.
3 Jews and Christians alike spoke the vernacular tongue, and they interacted daily in a variety of social and economic settings. But there were portents of change. The slaughter of thousands of Rhineland Jews in 1096 by Christian mobs caught up in the frenzied enthusiasm of the First Crusade gave dramatic testimony that suspicion and hatred often lay just below the surface. However valuable the Jews' economic role, and however cordial day-to-day contacts might be, the potential for conflict was always there.
People of the Promises, People of the Law 39 Like Paul, Aquinas traced the origins of the Jewish people to the patriarch Abraham. They are his descendants secundum carnem—"according to the flesh"—and their increase and their conquest of Canaan fulfilled the divine promises of countless descendants and a chosen land. But for Thomas, the Abrahamic covenant was at once too narrow and too general to constitute the Jews as a fopulus. On the one hand, God promised Abraham a son whose descendants would dwell in the land to which God had led him.
Aquinas and the Jews by John Y.B. Hood