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Sephardic Jews Leave Genetic Legacy In Spain - HISTORY


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Author Topic: Sephardic Jews Leave Genetic Legacy In Spain - HISTORY  (Read 6284 times)
Bianca
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« Reply #45 on: December 07, 2008, 04:10:51 pm »









                                                        D I S P E R S I O N






The Conversos, who were threatened and persecuted by the Inquisition, left Spain in bands or as individual refugees. Many of them escaped to Italy, attracted by the climate, which resembled that of the Iberian Peninsula, and by its kindred language. They settled at Ferrara, and Duke Ercole I d'Este granted them privileges, which were confirmed by his son, Alfonso, to twenty-one Spanish Conversos, physicians, merchants, and others (ib. xv. 113 et seq.).

Spanish and Portuguese Conversos settled also at Florence; and New Christians contributed to make Leghorn a leading seaport. They received privileges at Venice, where they were protected from the persecutions of the Inquisition. At Milan they materially advanced the interests of the city by their industry and commerce. At Bologna, Pisa, Naples, Reggio, and many other Italian cities they freely exercised their religion, and were soon so numerous that Fernando de Goes Loureiro, an abbot from Oporto, filled an entire book with the names of the Conversos who had drawn large sums from Portugal and had openly avowed Judaism in Italy.

In Piedmont Duke Emmanuel Philibert of Savoy welcomed Conversos from Coimbra, and granted them commercial and industrial privileges, as well as the free exercise of their religion. Rome was full of Conversos. Pope Paul III received them at Ancona for commercial reasons, and granted complete liberty "to all persons from Portugal and Algarve, even if belonging to the class of New Christians."
Three thousand Portuguese Jews and Conversos were living at Ancona by 1553.

Two years later the fanatical Pope Paul IV issued orders to have all the Conversos thrown into the prisons of the Inquisition which he had instituted. Sixty of them, who acknowledged the Catholic faith as penitents, were transported to the island of Malta; twenty-four, who adhered to Judaism, were publicly burned (May, 1556). Those who escaped the Inquisition were received at Pesaro by Duke Guido Ubaldo of Urbino. Guido had hoped to have the Jews and Conversos of Turkey select Pesaro as a commercial center; when that did not happen, he expelled the New Christians from Pesaro and other districts in 1558 (ib. xvi. 61 et seq.).

Many Conversos also went to Dubrovnik, formerly a considerable seaport. In May, 1544, a ship landed there filled with Portuguese refugees.
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