The Catholic Church, he continued, "decries hatred, persecutions, displays of anti-Semitism, directed against Jews at any time and by anyone."
Anti-Semitism has a long history, extending back to the Greco-Roman world and culminating in the Nazi Holocaust.
The term "anti-semitism" derives from the name of Noah's son Shem and his ancestors who are known as Shemites or Semites.
The advent of racial anti-Semitism was linked to the growing sense of nationalism in many countries.
The anti-Semitism of the Greeks though increasingly changed Roman attitudes and policies.
Before the nineteenth century, most anti-Semitism was religiously motivated.
Professor Cohn-Sherbok said, "the Seleucids served as a model for future forms of anti-Semitism.
Religious anti-Semitism (sometimes called anti-Judaism) usually did not affect those of Jewish ancestry who had converted to another religion—the Spanish Inquisition being the notable exception.
Anti-Semitism (alternatively spelled antisemitism) is hostility toward or prejudice against Jews as a religious, ethnic, or racial group, which can range from individual hatred to institutionalized, violent persecution.
According to British historian Paul Johnson, Luther's pamphlet "may be termed the first work of modern anti-Semitism, and a giant step forward on the road to the Holocaust.
Anti-Semitism in many Muslim countries today repeats all the libels and accusations that were made in Christian Europe.
A virulent anti-Semitism was a central part of Hitler's ideology from the beginning, and hatred of Jews provided both a distraction from other problems and fuel for a totalitarian engine that powered Nazi Germany.
In an interview with BBC's Radio Four, Sacks said that anti-Semitism was on the rise in Europe.
Nevertheless, anti-Semitism continued to grow in the Empire especially under Hadrian.
Anti-Semitism was officially adopted by the German Conservative Party at the Tivoli Congress in 1892.
So this improvement in the status of Jews which enabled them to mix freely in society paradoxically led to modern anti-Semitism: quasi-scientific theories about the racial inferiority of the Jews.
Britain's chief rabbi, Sir Jonathan Sacks, has warned that what he called a "tsunami of anti-Semitism" is spreading globally.
Symptomatic of racial anti-Semitism was the Dreyfus affair, a major political scandal which divided France for many years during the late nineteenth century.
The dominant form of anti-Semitism from the nineteenth century until today has been racial anti-Semitism.
The venomous anti-Semitism exposed by the affair led Theodor Herzl to conclude that the only solution was for Jews to have their own country.
Throughout the nineteenth century and into the twentieth centuries, the Catholic Church still incorporated strong anti-Semitic elements, despite increasing attempts to separate anti-Judaism—the opposition to the Jewish religion on religious grounds—and racial anti-Semitism.