Download A Man of Three Worlds: Samuel Pallache, a Moroccan Jew in by Mercedes García-Arenal PDF

By Mercedes García-Arenal

Within the past due 15th century, some of the Jews expelled from Spain made their strategy to Morocco and demonstrated a dynamic group in Fez. a few Jewish households turned well-known in trade and public lifestyles there. one of the Jews of Fez of Hispanic beginning was once Samuel Pallache, who served the Moroccan sultan as a advertisement and diplomatic agent in Holland until eventually Pallache's demise in 1616. sooner than that, he had attempted to come along with his kin to Spain, and to this finish he attempted to transform to Catholicism and labored as an informer, middleman, and undercover agent in Moroccan affairs for the Spanish courtroom. Later he grew to become a privateer opposed to Spanish ships and used to be attempted in London as a result. His spiritual identification proved to be as mutable as his political allegiances: whilst in Amsterdam, he used to be devoutly Jewish; whilst in Spain, a devoted converso (a baptized Jew).In a guy of 3 Worlds, Mercedes García-Arenal and Gerard Wiegers view Samuel Pallache's global as a microcosm of early sleek society, one way more interconnected, cosmopolitan, and fluid than is frequently portrayed. Pallache's missions and misadventures took him from Islamic Fez and Catholic Spain to Protestant England and Holland. via those travels, the authors discover the workings of the Moroccan sultanate and the Spanish court docket, the Jewish groups of Fez and Amsterdam, and information of the Atlantic-Mediterranean exchange. instantly a sweeping view of 2 continents, 3 faiths, and 5 geographical regions and an intimate tale of 1 man's awesome lifestyles, a guy of 3 Worlds is background at its so much compelling.

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Extra info for A Man of Three Worlds: Samuel Pallache, a Moroccan Jew in Catholic and Protestant Europe

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The persecutions endured by Jews in the 22 a m an of three worlds Iberian Peninsula, especially after 1391, had fueled them with messianic and apocalyptic hopes of wreaking some sort of historical revenge on Christians. For many Jews, Islam came to assume a providential role in a common struggle that appeared to swing decisively in their favor when Constantinople fell to the Ottomans in 1453. )4 Jewish identification with the Islamic cause was still to be seen in Morocco as late as 1578, after the defeat by Moroccan forces of the Portuguese army led by King Sebastian at the famous battle of Al-Qasr al-Kabir (“Alcázarquivir” to the Spaniards and “Alcaçer Quibir” to the Portuguese themselves).

After being baptized in Seville, “he sold cloth in the streets” until he had gathered together enough money to go to the Italian port of Livorno, where he married a Jewish Portuguese woman. 60 A number of preliminary conclusions can be drawn from the information contained in these records. From the sheer number of Moroccan Jewish prisoners and witnesses involved in the trials, to say nothing of references to other Jews known to have attended religious meetings, it can be seen that Madrid was home to several Jews from Fez who had converted to Christianity and were now serving noblemen or courtiers there.

When the Inquisitors asked him why in that case he had converted to Islam when living in Fez, he first replied that it was because he had had an argument with his parents and then said that it was “because Jews are not respected by the Moors and cannot do anything,” and that he wanted to be respected and to live and eat well. But, he clarified, he had only converted in speech and not in his heart. In Spain, it had seemed to him at first that Christianity was not very different from the law of Moses, but he soon saw that he had been mistaken and found himself deeply disturbed by the images Christians used and by the fact that they believed they ate the body of Christ.

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