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AFFONSO °. Name of several kings of Portugal. affonso henriques (1139–1185), the first king of Portugal, continued the relatively tolerant policy to the Jews of his Castilian forebears, giving the Jews autonomy in civil as well as criminal cases. His almoxarife or treasurer was Yaḥia ibn Ya'ish, to whom he granted considerable privileges. His grandson, affonso ii (1211–1223), also had Jews in his employment in responsible offices, though he confirmed the anti-Jewish provisions of the *Lateran Council of 1215 and endorsed the resolutions passed by the Cortes at Coimbra encouraging baptisms. affonso iii (1245/8–1279) on the other hand, almost systematically disregarding many ecclesiastical restrictions against the Jews, employed them widely in the financial administration, and reorganized the internal affairs of the Jews of the kingdom. He was responsible, among other matters, for the organization of the office of chief rabbi (*Arraby moor) of Portugal, with its far-reaching powers. affonso iv (1325–1357) was unfavorably disposed toward the Jews, enforced the wearing of the Jewish *badge, and restricted the right of emigration for any person of property. affonso v (1438–1481) relaxed the enforcement of the anti-Jewish regulations. He is memorable for having in his service Isaac *Abrabanel and Joseph ibn Yaḥia, with whom he is said to have had learned discussions on science and philosophy. He attempted with only qualified success to suppress the anti-Jewish riots of 1449 and punish the ringleaders. In his compilation of laws, collected under the title Ordenações Affonsinas, the regulations concerning the Jews occupy a prominent place (book 2). In an edict of 1468, while renewing the restriction of the Jews to their judíarias, he permitted them to do business at the fairs elsewhere.


Mendes dos Remedios, Judeus em Portugal (1895), passim; M. Kayserling, Geschichte der Juden in Portugal (1867), passim; M.B. Amzalak, Uma carta de lei… de D. Afonso V (1926); Roth, Marranos, index.

[Cecil Roth]