Anusim

maranos. Spanish or Portuguese crypto-Jews outwardly professing Christianity through expediency, compulsion, or fear. The subterfuge began with a frightful anti-Semitic pogrom in Seville in 1391, when 4,000 Jews were massacred. Others simulated faith and accepted baptism to save their lives. Some were cynical apostates who lacked Jewish faith, but the majority conformed secretly. The persecution continued when, with imaginary atrocities charged against them, the Maranos were hounded by the Spanish Inquisition.* Many outstanding men were among the refugees who from that time were scattered all over the globe. The excommunicated Jew, Baruch Spinoza,* was of Marano stock. The bloodcurdling record stresses the brutality of bigoted persecution, the impervious disregard of human liberty, and the final impossibility of proselytizing by force.