History, Department of


Date of this Version

Fall 2011


Journal of Palestine Studies Vol. XLI, No. 1 (Autumn 2011), pp. 24–44; doi: jps.2011.XLI.1.24.


Copyright © 2011 by the Institute for Palestine Studies. Published by the University of California Press. Used by permission.


For the Armenians of Palestine, the three decades of the Mandate were probably the most momentous in their fifteen hundred-year presence in the country. The period witnessed the community’s profound transformation under the double impacts of Britain’s Palestine policy and waves of destitute Armenian refugees fleeing the massacres in Anatolia. The article presents, against the background of late Ottoman rule, a comprehensive overview of the community, including the complexities and role of the religious hierarchy, the initially difficult encounter between the indigenous Armenians and the new refugee majority, their politics and associations, and their remarkable economic recovery. By the early 1940s, the Armenian community was at the peak of its success, only to be dealt a mortal blow by the 1948 war, from which it never recovered.

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