Caceres (Casseres), Francisco (Joseph) de

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CACERES (Casseres), FRANCISCO (Joseph) DE

CACERES (Casseres), FRANCISCO (Joseph) DE (b. c. 1580), *Marrano litterateur. After leaving Spain, he first lived apparently in France where, styling himself "F. de Cazeres, a gentleman of Castile" (Gentilhombre castellano), he published Nuevos fieros españoles (Paris, 1607). As a Jew in Amsterdam, he continued his literary activity. He published Los siete dias de la semana (Amsterdam, 1613), translated from Guillaume de Salluste's French epic on the Creation, La Divine Semaine. This bore the author's Hebrew name Joseph and the Jewish date and was dedicated to Jacob *Tirado, parnas of the Amsterdam community, thus making clear the translator's religious allegiance. This was followed by Dialogos satýricos (Frankfurt, i.e., Amsterdam, 1616: 2nd ed. Amsterdam, 1617), consisting of four dialogues composed in a very Italianate, Lucianesque vein, and later Visión deleytable y sumario de todas las sciencias (Amsterdam, 1623; 2nd ed. 1663), both published under the name "Francisco." The last-mentioned volume was a translation from the Italian version (Venice, 1556) of a once-popular Spanish work by Alfonso de la Torre (1421–1461) of Salamanca, first published by the Jewish printer Abraham Usque (Ferrara, 1554). It is probable that Caceres was not aware of the language of the original, nor of the fact that the author was Spanish and was probably a *Converso. Francisco de Caceres is reputed to have been father of the "licenciado" Daniel de Caceres, who gave official approval to the first part of Manasseh Ben Israel's Conciliador (1632) and De la fragilidad humana (1642); of R. Samuel de Caceres (d. 1660), who edited the Spanish translation of the Bible published a year after his death, and who married a sister of Spinoza; and of Simon de *Caceres, one of the founders of the London Jewish community. The formerly accepted view that there were two writers named Francisco de Caceres is due to a confusion of M. Kayserling, who did not know of the 1623 edition of the Visión deleytable and concluded that the same person could not have been active in 1616 and 1663.


Kayserling, Bibl, 32; esn, 1 (1949), 136–8; S. Seeligmann, Bibliographie en historie (1927), 44f., 49f.; A. Morel-Fatio, Ambrosio de Salazar (1900).

[Kenneth R. Scholberg]