[Side-note: the Karaites are a sect of Judaism which attempts to live only according to the Bible/TaNaKh, and does not recognize the legal/halakhic authority of the Talmud and later Rabbinic thought. In modern times, there were large Karaite communities in Egypt, Iraq, and the Crimea, which now live in Israel or the United States. Non-Karaite Jews are referred to as Rabbanites].
|Prayer at the Karaite synagogue, Ashdod, Israel, 1985.|
Photo by Ira Nowinski.
Unfortunately, there’s not a huge amount of information about Jewish henna traditions in Egypt, and they appear to have largely died out by the early 20th century. In this post I’ll try to collect what we do know about henna in Egypt, why it disappeared, and what we can do to revive it.