During the late Qing Dynasty, translated novels served as a conduit for knowledge from abroad for Chinese readers eager to learn about the world. Differences between original texts and their translations are particularly enlightening, illustrating either the particular intentions of the translator or the tacit influence of the target language and culture’s norms. This paper compares depictions of Rebecca in Walter Scott’s Ivanhoe and Lin Shu’s translation to explore three aspects of early twentieth century Chinese readers’ perceptions of Jewish people. First, conventional descriptions in Chinese literature avoid ethnic stereotypes of facial features. Other stereotypes, however, are emphasized and employed in place of more detailed analysis. For example, the source of Jewish wealth is often attributed to greed rather than to business practices. Second, Judaism receives negligible treatment in translation, from which little can be learned about the religion’s tenets or practices, except perhaps the fervor it inspires in Rebecca. Third, the nation-state concept has a more prominent role in the translation than in the original. The inability of the Jews to either maintain their ancient kingdom or subsequently revive it was a cause of great lament for the translator. This may reveal the preoccupation of the age, which was a time when many feared that China was under existential threat.