Karaites in Ramla
In the middle ages existed in Ramla a large community of Karaites.
The first information regarding them in from the 10th century, and
the Karaite SAHAL MATZLIACH tells about them and their fine relationship
with their neighboring Jews who they called Rabbis:"Our brothers, deciples
of the rabbis in the holy mountain ( Jerusalem ) and in Ramla".
In later years the Karaite community increased and conflicts aroused
between them and the Jews.
In the 11th century around the year 1030 the rabbinical authorities in
Jerusalem decided to declare a ban on them and planned to carry this out
on Jerusalems Mount Of Olives were many would gather for the HOSHANA RABA
festival - the last day of the Jewish holiday SUCOT. The governing
authorities opposed to this act wanting to keep conflicts between
residents as far away as possible.
The Karaites in Ramla had special synagogues. One was named KNISA-ALUSTA
in Arabic meaning "The middle synagogue". According to one informa there
was also a Karaite synagogue named after the Jewish prophet SHMUEL.
Ramlas conquering by Hesleg & Kims forces in the year 1071 and later
by the crusaders in 1099, led to the termination of the Karaite community
in Ramla and no record was left.
When the state of Israel was founded, Karaites from Egypt began imigration.
These came mainly from Cairo were they lived in close neighboring with
the Jews. These Karaite imigrants settled in Ramla and the near area.
Today living in Ramla are about 8 Karaite families who make a living from
craftsmanship and storekeeping.