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Seeking The Messiah: Converso Messianism In Post-1453 Valencia

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Chapter Summary

A thorough study of the case file is nonetheless a worthwhile endeavor for historians concerned with Valencia's large and complex Converso community or, more generally, with the religious, economic, and social life of Iberian Conversos during the fifteenth century. This chapter intends to use the material in the case file to explore the lives and motivations of the defendants, and to shed a bit more light on the nature and extent of Converso messianism in Valencia after the fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Turks in 1453. Although the evidence contained in this trial record does indicate the existence of a messianic movement among Valencian Conversos during the decade or so following 1453, what is perhaps just as striking about this one case from 1464 is the spectrum of Converso religious belief and practice it indicates and the religious and social fluidity among Conversos, Old Christians, and Jews it reflects.

Keywords: Converso messianism; Valencian Conversos



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