This Week in Sephardic History (Dec. 10-15)

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(Original research by Shelomo Alfassa)

This Week in Sephardic History (Dec. 10-15)

December 12, 1626: Inquisitional authorities arrested Francisco Maldonado de Silva, after his sister (a devout Catholic) turned him in because he told her he believed in Judaism, as their father had. His passion for Judaism came after studying a book written in 1391 by the Bishop of Burgos. The Bishop, a convert Jew, was born as Solomon Halevi. He had written a book to defend the Catholic faith. Halevi's words put doubt into Francisco's mind about Catholicism, and brought him closer to Judaism-the religion Francisco's father had already been following. In the end, Francisco went to his death January 23, 1639 for his faith in Judaism.  

December 13, 1847: The Portuguese congregation of New Orleans held their first annual meeting and elected the following officers: Jacob L. Levy, President; A. C. Labatt, Vice President; Joseph De Pass, senior Trustee; A. T. Ezekiel, Junior Trustee; Isaac Rodriguez, Treasurer, and Jacob Ezekiel, Secretary.  

December 11, 1914: Hahambashi Rabbi Nahum calls upon Ottoman government in Palestine to for protection of the Jews in the face of an anti-foreign movement.  

December 10, 1915: Moise Cohen of Constantinople was appointed professor of finance at Ottoman University.  

December 15, 1916: Jewish community in Sophia, Bulgaria agree to erect and maintain a large military hospital.

December 15, 1916: Greeks call up all Jews 19-30 for military service. The response was so overwhelming, that the authorities ordered police not to arrest any Jews in the streets or delinquents in their houses.

December 11, 1917: British troops under General Allenby make their way into Jerusalem, defeating the Ottoman Turks. The whole city turned out to greet the General, as did the Chief Sephardic and Ashkenazic Rabbis who came to hear him speak.  

December 14, 1917: Reuters telegram to Amsterdam reports the population of Palestine is suffering terribly; and that the population has been reduced to one third because of hunger, sickness and distress. Only 23,000 of the 60,000 Jews are left in Jerusalem.

December 10, 1920: Greek General Zymbrakakis, commander of the forces in Thrace blames the Jews for partly causing anti-Venizelos manifestations. Jewish deputies at Salonica and Adrianople protest this declaration.  

December 10, 1930: The savings bank which many members of the Sephardic Jewish Brotherhood in New York had their money in closed and no funds were made available; this was during the Depression. The collection of dues began to fall off at an alarming rate, and there was a high demand for financial aid from a Secret Relief Fund.

December 14, 1932: Died, Dr. Angel Pulido y Fernandez, Spanish researcher of the Sephardim. He was born in Madrid in 1852, and became a physician in 1873. In addition to medicine, he was active in politics and historical research. In 1904 he wrote 'Espanoles sin Patria' (Spaniards without a home) which sparked the idea of the Sephardim returning to Spain. He became a member of the Spanish Parliament, and later the King made him a Senator. He spent the latter part of his life passionate about Sephardic return, writing, meeting and advocating this idea.

December 14, 1968: The Spanish Minister of Justice annulled the 'Edict of Expulsion' given by Ferdinand and Isabella in 1492. Mr. Samuel Toledano was the first to hear of this annulment when he sought a permit for the opening of the synagogue.



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This page contains a single entry by Shelomo Alfassa published on December 11, 2007 7:41 PM.

Who Was Nahmanides ?? was the previous entry in this blog.

Jerusalem's Moat of Blood is the next entry in this blog.

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