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There are also a number of published monographs on aspects of Australian Jewish history, for a guide to which (as well as to Australian Jewish literature) Serge Liberman, A Bibliography of Australasian Judaica, 1788-2008 (2011) is a distinguished reference work.

Australian Jews never constituted more than 1% of the total colonial community.

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Most Jews in Sydney were from Western and Central Europe, and were largely secular.

Meanwhile, Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe settled in Melbourne, and were highly Orthodox.

Jewish refugees from Russia and Poland began arriving in the 1890s, fleeing pogroms in their native lands.

This immigration wave led to a divide among urban Jewish communities.

The average age of the Jewish convicts was 25, but ranged as young as 8 to some elderly people.

At first, the Church of England was the established religion in the colony, and during the early years of transportation all convicts were required to attend Anglican services on Sundays. Similarly, education in the new settlement was Anglican church-controlled until the 1840s. William Cowper allotted land for the establishment of a Jewish cemetery in the right-hand corner of the then-Christian cemetery.

Rabbi John Simon Levi, co-author of Australian Genesis: Jewish Convicts and Settlers, 1788-1850 (1974), has authored the magisterial biographical directory These Are The Names: Jewish Lives in Australia, 1788-1860 (2013).

The Australian Jewish Historical Society Journal (started 1939) appears twice a year, published in Sydney and Melbourne respectively.

Initially, they settled in rural areas, but by the end of the 19th century the lack of Jewish communal connections and fear of assimilation led most Australian Jews in rural areas to relocate to the Jewish centres in cities.

As a result, the rapidly growing community in Sydney needed larger facilities, and built the Great Synagogue, located on Elizabeth Street, opposite Hyde Park, which was consecrated in 1878.

The condition of the Jewish community improved to such an extent that in 1844 the first synagogue was formed in York Street, Sydney using rented space, which continued in use for more than thirty years.

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