New article by Jessica Roitman in ‘Jewish Culture and History’

New article by Jessica Vance Roitman (KITLV) and Cátia Antunes, ‘A war of words; Sephardi merchants, (inter)national incidents, and litigation in the Dutch Republic, 1580–1640’, in the journal Jewish Culture and History (winter 2015), p. 1-21.

Far from being passive victims of prevailing political winds or unfair and exploitative legal systems, the Sephardim of the early seventeenth century Dutch Republic were active and successful in influencing political and legal decision making in their favour. Using two examples, this article illustrates how the Portuguese ‘Nation’ took advantage of the political and legal options available to them to safeguard their business interests. The article argues that the confluence of (inter)national legal structures for the protection of trade combined with the political and economic clout of Sephardi merchants meant they were well-able to defend their rights.

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