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Resh Galuta, or Prince of the Captivity. Title held by the head of the Babylonian Jewish community until the 11th century C.E. Jews of Babylonia had the right to govern themselves according to Jewish law, and the exilarch therefore appointed judges and was the court of final appeal. The exilarch collected and allocated taxes and represented the Jewish community at the Babylonian court. Since, in addition, the exilarch claimed direct descent from the House of David and for a thousand years the office was transmitted from father to son, they were personages of great authority. (See Babylonia.)

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