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Raphael Patai states that later Roman writers remarked that they differed little in either customs, manner of writing, or names from the people among whom they dwelt; and it was especially difficult to differentiate Jews from the Syrians.No evidence has yet been found of a Jewish presence in antiquity in Germany beyond its Roman border, nor in Eastern Europe.Jews in former Roman territories faced new challenges as harsher anti-Jewish Church rulings were enforced.Charlemagne's expansion of the Frankish empire around 800, including northern Italy and Rome, brought on a brief period of stability and unity in Francia.The Greek historian Herodotus knew of the Jews, whom he called "Palestinian Syrians", and listed them among the levied naval forces in service of the invading Persians.While Jewish monotheism was not deeply affected by Greek Polytheism, the Greek way of living was attractive for many wealthier Jews.
The Stobi Synagogue in Macedonia, was built on the ruins of a more ancient synagogue in the 4th century, while later in the 5th century, the synagogue was transformed into Christian basilica.In Gaul and Germany itself, with the possible exception of Trier and Cologne, the archeological evidence suggests at most a fleeting presence of very few Jews, primarily itinerant traders or artisans.King Dagobert I of the Franks expelled the Jews from his Merovingian kingdom in 629.Conforming to the custom of designating areas of Jewish settlement with biblical names, Spain was denominated Sefarad (Obadiah 20), France was called Tsarefat (1 Kings 17:9), and Bohemia was called the Land of Canaan.Many Jews were denied full Roman citizenship until Emperor Caracalla granted all free peoples this privilege in 212.
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epigraphic evidence in grave site excavations, particularly in Brigetio (Szőny), Aquincum (Óbuda), Intercisa (Dunaújváros), Triccinae (Sárvár), Savaria (Szombathely), Sopianae (Pécs) in Hungary, and Mursa (Osijek) in Croatia, attest to the presence of Jews after the 2nd and 3rd centuries where Roman garrisons were established, There was a sufficient number of Jews in Pannonia to form communities and build a synagogue.