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New Christians, Jews, And Amsterdam At The Crossroads Of Expansion Systems

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Chapter Summary

This chapter explores the Iberian or 'first' expansion system as it was a shifting to the Northwestern European, or second, expansion system, roughly between 1595 and 1635. Within the context of this system, it discusses two New Christian family networks involved in the slave trade, the Dias Henriques and the Gramaxo. These New Christian families and their networks were representative of the way in which the Iberian expansion system worked. The chapter argues that for Iberian New Christians involved in the Atlantic trade, in general, and slave trading, in particular, there were two separate routes-the Angola/Brazil route and the Cape Verde-Cartagena route-which were not particularly linked or integrated in the early-to-mid-seventeenth century. The Jews in Amsterdam certainly did take advantage of the trade with the Portuguese empire. They traded large quantities of sugar from the colonies, and transported Baltic products to Iberia.

Keywords: Amsterdam; Dias Henriques; Gramaxo; Iberian expansion system; Jews; New Christians; Northwestern European; Portuguese empire



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