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    Luis de Carvajal

    Jew Score:



    1537(?) – 13 February 1591

    To kvell or not to kvell, that is the question.

    On one hand, Luis de Carvajal y Cueva was pretty darn awesome. How many other Jewish conquistadors can you name? Yet that's what Carvajal was — alright, he wasn't too Jewish himself, as his parents were forced to convert to Christianity. Still, once you get past that, a Jew who roamed the Atlantic in charge of a fleet, a Jew who explored new lands (he was the first Spanish subject to set foot in what is now Texas), a Jew who governed the Mexican state of Nuevo Leon, a Jew who helped bring other Jews to North America... That's some kvell. That's a lot of kvell.

    On the other hand, Carvajal started out as a slave trader. And he massacred many, many Native Americans. Yep... not much kvell there.

    Carvajal didn't exactly end well. He was living in Mexico, supposedly as a good Christian, when the Inquisition (no one ever expects the Spanish Inquisition!) decided to intervene. Carvajal and his entire family were charged with "Judizing", jailed and tortured. He died in prison; his relatives were burned at the stake.

    Somehow, that gives us a little more reason to kvell...

    Verdict: Borderline Jew.

    March 14, 2013

    See Also

    Gaspar Castano de Sosa

    Christopher Columbus

    Diego de Montemayor

    Diego de Ordaz

    Tomas de Torquemada
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