Marranos: A Lost People


Some people might call them New Jews, some New Christians, and others
call them Marranos. The majority of the world population has no idea who the
Marranos are. To begin to explain these secret people, one must first receive a
lesson in World History. We will begin in the 1492.
In school, we are brainwashed to connect the year 1492 with the year
that Columbus discovered the New World. Yet, if we look at the year 1492, there
are other occurrences which are noteworthy. For instance, in the year 1492,
Spain, the country which sent Columbus to America, decided to officially expel
the Jews from Spain. The Jews were forced to either leave Spain, convert to
Catholicism, or be put to death. This ...

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. Unfortunately, Portugal, in 1497, expelled the Jews from its borders
as well. Anti-semitism was growing in Western Europe and the Jews needed to
escape. The prime choice seemed to be so obvious. The Jews went to the New World.

The immigration of the Marranos to the new world might have begun with
none other than Christopher Columbus. This, of course, is not definite, but
there has been research which has shown that Columbus was indeed a Marrano.
Apparently his parents were Marranos.2 Even though there are some disagreements
about this fact, there is strong evidence to support the claim that Columbus was
Jewish.
As the Marranos arrived in the New World, they were not able to reveal
their secret identities and practice as Jews. This was because the Spanish
government established inquisition offices in the New World. These office's sole
responsibility was to hunt down Marranos and bring them to justice. The
inquisitors had to visit every town once a year and ...

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of course, lead to a decline in religious knowledge
through each generation. Another obstacle was that the Marranos had to profess
their loyalty to the Catholic church. They often became involved in the church,
as to help conceal their true identities. There is a story of a Rabbi who
converted to Catholicism and he eventually became a bishop in the church. This
is just an example of the extremes that the conversos would go to in order to
conceal their religion.
Holidays took new forms during the Spanish Inquisition. The holiest
holiday of the Jews is Yom Kippur. During this holiday, Jews beg G-d for
forgiveness and they fast for 24 hours. Instead of praying all day, the ...

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Added: 6/4/2006 07:02:20 AM
Category: Book Reports
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 2428
Pages: 9

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