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    (14th century)

    Bulgaria is not exactly known for its Jews. Sure, there was Nobel laureate Elias Canetti, but he emigrated at the age of six. After him, it's rather barren.

    There is one rather notable exception. Sarah-Theodora, empress consort to Bulgarian czar Ivan Alexander during the 14th century. Yep, a Jewish Bulgarian queen.

    The story is as old as time: the czar got bored with his first wife, who was forced to become a nun. In his place, he plucked a young starlet. A young Jewish starlet, but what the hell. She converted to Eastern Orthodoxy.

    So did this new queen usher in a golden age of Bulgarian Jews? Quite the opposite. Sarah-Theodora was actually quite active in persecuting her landsmen. So much for a Jewish Bulgarian queen.

    Maybe that's why Bulgaria is not known for its Jews...

    Verdict: Barely a Jew.

    November 13, 2013

    See Also

    Alice Heine

    Elena Lupescu

    Queen Marau

    Elsa von Gutmann

    Seble Wongel
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