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"Citizenship Certificate" for a Jewish Resident of Berlin (1841)

This “citizenship certificate” was issued by the City of Berlin in 1841. Prior to the formal emancipation of the Jews by the North German Confederation in 1869 (extended to the entire Reich in 1871), Jewish residents had to file a special application and receive permission from individual communities in order to be granted municipal citizenship. Recipients had to pledge loyalty to the Prussian king, promise to obey the authorities, and serve the public good. Noteworthy in this document is that Jews were allowed to swear the oath by the “God of Israel,” whose name appears in Hebrew characters.

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© Bildarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz