Pale of Settlement
The Pale of Settlement (Черта оседлости, cherta osedlosti, דער תּחום-המושבֿ, der tkhum-ha-moyshəv, תְּחוּם הַמּוֹשָב, tḥùm ha-mosháv) was the term given to a region of Imperial Russia in which permanent residency by Jews was allowed and beyond which Jewish permanent residency was generally prohibited.
The Pale was first created by Catherine the Great in 1791, after several failed attempts by her predecessors, notably the Empress Elizabeth, to remove Jews from Russia entirely,unless they converted to Russian Orthodoxy, the state religion. The reasons for its creation were primarily economic and nationalist
Pale ofsettlement extended from the eastern pale, or demarcation line, to the western Russian border with the Kingdom of Prussia (later the German Empire) and with Austria-Hungary.
The English term "pale" is derived from the Latin word "palus", a stake, extended to mean the area enclosed by a fence or boundary.
Jews were, however, excluded from residency at a number of cities within the Pale, while a limited number of categories of Jews were allowed to live outside it.
With its large Catholic and Jewish populations, the Pale was acquired by the Russian Empire (which was majority Russian Orthodox) in a series of military conquests and diplomatic maneuvers between 1791 and 1835, and lasted until the fall of the Russian Empire in 1917.
It comprised about 20% of the territory of European Russia and largely corresponded to historical borders of the former Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth; it included much of present-day Lithuania, Belarus, Poland, Moldova, Latvia, Ukraine, and parts of western Russia.
The concentration of Jews in the Pale made them easy targets for pogroms and anti-Jewish riots by the majority population. These, along with the repressive May Laws, often devastated whole communities. Though pogroms were staged throughout the existence of the Pale, particularly devastating attacks occurred 1881–1883 and 1903–1906, targeting hundreds of communities, killing thousands of Jews, and causing considerable property damage
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