Monday, October 25

How 23 Jews Expelled from Brazil Helped Found New York

  • Luis Barrucho
  • BBC News Brazil in London

Map of Brazil showing flagships in 1630.

Image source, Library of Congress of the USA.


Map of Brazil showing flagships in 1630.

On board the Valk ship, some 600 Jews left Recife, in Pernambuco, Brazil, expelled by the Portuguese. It was the end of the Dutch occupation in Brazil and also of the freedom to practice their religion.

They wanted to return to their homeland, the Netherlands, where the cult of Judaism was allowed thanks to Calvinism.

They had arrived there more than two decades earlier, when the Dutch conquered part of northeastern Brazil, with their sights set on the production and trade of sugar.

But a storm pushed them out of the way and their ship was looted by pirates.

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