JESURUN, REUEL

JESURUN, REUEL (formerly Paulo de Pina; c. 1575–1634), Portuguese Marrano. Born in Lisbon of a new christian family, Paulo set out for Rome in 1599, intending to join a Christian order there. En route he called on the Marrano physician Elijah Montalto, a friend of his family residing at Leghorn, Italy. After Montalto had persuaded him to return to Judaism, Paulo went back to Lisbon, embarking for Brazil in 1601 in the company of the confirmed Judaizer Diego Gomez (Abraham Cohen) lobato . Moving to amsterdam in 1604, he openly espoused Judaism, taking the biblical name Reuel Jesurun. Devoting himself to the Beth Jacob congregation, he served as administrator of the Talmud Torah rabbinical school during 1616. A man of considerable literary talent, he composed Diálogo dos montes (published in 1767), a dramatic poem in praise of Judaism which was first read in the Beth Jacob synagogue on Shavuot 5384 (1624). The poem was translated from Portuguese to English by Philip Polack and appeared in The American Sephardi, vol. 4, nos. 1–2 (Autumn, 1970), 48–88. The Beth Jacob archive contains Jesurun's initial account of Amsterdam's historic Jewish cemetery, which he helped to establish. There he interred his benefactor Elijah Montalto, who had died in 1616 in France and been embalmed by his royal patrons. Jesurun himself died in Altona. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Roth, Marranos, 313–6; J. Meijer, in: ESN, S.V. Parnassim; W.C. Pieterse, Livro de Bet Haim do Kahal Kados de Bet Yahacob (1970).

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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  • Jesurun, Reuel — (fl. c. 1575 1634)    Portuguese marrano. He was born in Lisbon. In 1599 he travelled to Rome, intending to join a Christian monastic order. On the journey he was persuaded to return to Judaism, and went back to Lisbon. In 1604 he settled in… …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

  • JESURUN — (Jessurun, Yeshurun), descendants of a Marrano family who fled the Spanish Inquisition and settled mainly in Amsterdam and Hamburg. The Hamburg branch is best known for (d. 1655), rabbi of Hamburg s Portuguese community. He was succeeded by ISAAC …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • LOBATO — (Cohen Lobato), Marrano family prominent in Amsterdam, Hamburg, and London. Of especial importance were the following: ABRAHAM COHEN LOBATO, Portuguese Marrano born in Lisbon where he was known as Diego Gomez Lobato. In 1599, when his kinsman,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • CHAVES — CHAVES, Portuguese family, named after its town of origin, Chaves. After the expulsion and forcible conversions of 1496–97, it was one of the wealthiest and most distinguished of the Marrano families. Branches of the family settled in Amsterdam,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • LISBON — LISBON, capital of portugal . The Middle Ages Jews were apparently settled in Lisbon in the 12th century, at the time of the conquest of the territory from the Moors and the establishment of the kingdom of Portugal by Affonso I (1139–85). For a… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

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