FORCALQUIERS, village in the Basses-Alpes department, S.E. France, approximately 50 mi. (about 80 km.) east of Avignon. The medieval Jewish community, which existed at least from 1275, occupied a separate quarter and owned a synagogue. The ledger of a single merchant of Forcalquiers records 20 Jews as his customers between 1330 and 1332. In 1351, possibly still in the aftermath of the *Black Death, anti-Jewish disorders broke out in Forcalquiers in which the population of the surrounding villages also took part. It is reported that in 1424 several inhabitants of Forcalquiers and Manosque formed a plot to kill all the Jews in the town. In 1472, a citizen of Forcalquiers was appointed guardian (conservateur) of all the Jews of Provence. The community in Forcalquiers was among the first to feel the effects of the definitive decrees of expulsion of 1486. Toward the end of the 18th century, some Jewish merchants, originating from the *Comtat Venaissin, attempted to settle in Forcalquiers but were expelled in 1775. In 1940 there were 72 Jews in the labor camp which had beenset up in the district. About 14 Jewish families, mostly assisted by refugees' organization, were registered in Forcalquiers in 1942.
Levi, in: REJ, 37 (1898), 259–65; 41 (1900), 274–5; C. Bernard, Essai historique sur … Forcalquiers (1905), 90–91, 99, 122, 130, 153; Z. Szajkowski, Franco-Judaica (1962), nos. 14, 337; idem, Analytical Franco-Jewish Gazetteer (1966), 154.
Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.