Skip to main content

Brandão, Ambrósio Fernandes


BRANDÃO, AMBRÓSIO FERNANDES (c. 1560–c. 1630), Portuguese author and soldier. Brandão distinguished himself as an officer in the Portuguese campaigns against the French and Indians in northern Brazil. In 1583 he lived in Pernambuco (Recife) where, like many other New Christians of the region, he practiced Judaism in secret. For attending services at a clandestine synagogue Brandão was denounced to the Inquisition in Bahia in October 1591. His name was again mentioned during the trial of another Judaizer, Bento *Teixeira Pinto, in January 1594 and he was once more denounced to the Holy Office in Lisbon in 1606. Brandão nevertheless managed to retain his freedom and eventually settled in Paraíba, where he owned sugar mills during the years 1613 to 1627. There he died prior to the Dutch invasion. Brandão is the reputed author of the Diálogos das Grandezas do Brasil (1618), one of the two outstanding works on the history of Brazil composed in the 17th century. In the Diálogos, which reflect local conditions in about 1618, conversations are conducted between Brandosio (i.e., Brandão himself) and Alviano (Nuño Alvares, a colleague who was also a New Christian and was similarly denounced to the Holy Office). Brandão claimed that the Brazilian Indians are descended from children of Israel who reached the Americas during the reign of Solomon, but Alviano disagreed with this view. The work contains a number of other references to the Jews.


A. Wiznitzer, Jews in Colonial Brazil (1960), 19, 26–8, 32.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Brandão, Ambrósio Fernandes." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . 19 Aug. 2019 <>.

"Brandão, Ambrósio Fernandes." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . (August 19, 2019).

"Brandão, Ambrósio Fernandes." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Retrieved August 19, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.