"There is neither Greek nor Jew," words of Archbishop Damaskenos, in a letter of protest to the Germans after the deportation of Jews
There have been organized Jewish communities in Greece for more than two thousand years. The oldest and the most characteristic Jewish group that has inhabited Greece are the Romaniotes, also called "Greek Jews" by many. However, the term "Greek Jew" is predominantly used for any person of Jewish faith that lives in or originates from Greece.
The majority of the Jews in Greece are Sephardim whose ancestors had left Spain after the 1492 expulsion. Most of them installed in Thessaloniki, the city which was to be named "Mother of Israel" in the years to come. Besides the Sephardim and the Romaniotes, small Ashkenazim communities had existed as well, in Thessaloniki and elsewhere.
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