Jewish History

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 207-227

First online:

What Actually Happened to the Jews of Ukraine in 1648?

  • Shaul StampferAffiliated withHebrew University

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The question of how many Jews died and how many survived in 1648 has produced much historical discussion. The problem is always the incompatibility of scholarly estimates and what is found in contemporary chronicles. Using demographic tools and applying them to all the regions of the Ukraine, it appears that no more, and possibly much fewer, than fifty percent of the 40,000 or so Jews in that region perished. The survivors mostly returned to their homes and rebuilt. Though speculative, the commensurability of the results argues their probable accuracy.