14 Facts About Krymchaks


Krymchaks are Jewish ethno-religious communities of Crimea derived from Turkic-speaking adherents of Rabbinic Judaism.

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Krymchaks speak a modified form of the Crimean Tatar language, called the Krymchak language.

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The Krymchaks adhered to their Turkic patois up to World War II, but later began to lose their linguistic identity.

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Krymchaks are likely a result of diverse origins whose ancestors probably included Sephardic and Ashkenazi Jews, and Jews from the Byzantine empire, Genoa, Georgia, and other places.

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Krymchaks was the author of a monumental Hebrew historical chronicle, Devar sefataim, on the history of the Crimean Khanate.

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The Krymchaks were thereafter subjected to the same religious persecution imposed on other Jews in Russia.

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Unlike their Karaite neighbors, the Krymchaks suffered the full brunt of anti-Jewish restrictions.

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Many Krymchaks were killed in the fighting between the Red Army and the White Movement.

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Under Joseph Stalin, the Krymchaks were forbidden to write in Hebrew and were ordered to employ the Cyrillic alphabet to write their own language.

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Krymchaks were compelled to work in factories and collective farms.

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Unlike the Crimean Karaites, the Krymchaks were targeted for annihilation by the Nazis following the Axis capture of Crimea in 1941.

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Dress and customs of the Krymchaks resembled that of the nearby Karaites and Crimean Tatars.

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Krymchaks considered themselves a distinct group and rarely intermarried with Karaites or the Crimean Tatars.

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The Krymchaks used to practice polygamy but then adopted monogamy by the late 19th century.

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