Pernambuco: The First Jewish Community in the New World
ENGLISH CORNER, CON LINDA JIMÉNEZ – This week’s trivia question: Who was Isaac Aboab da Fonseca, and what did he do?
When Pernambuco, in the northeast of Brazil, was occupied in 1630, the Dutch government passed a law guaranteeing economic and religious freedom for all those openly professing the Jewish faith. The Sephardic community in Amsterdam took advantage of this edict to finance Holland’s colonial venture, and Jews from many parts of Europe and the Mediterranean resettled in Brazil, where the community prospered until the area was reconquered by the Portuguese in 1654.
Luis Esteban González Manrique is a journalist and writer who was born in Perú, where he studied Law at the Universidad Católica Santa María in Arequipa. He also studied Journalism at the University of Lima and Political Science at the International University of Andalucía. He spoke with us about the fascinating history of the Jewish community of Pernambuco and its capital Recife.