Ciudad Rodrigo

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CIUDAD RODRIGO , city in Castile, western Spain, near the Portuguese border. The Jews living there already enjoyed certain rights in the 13th century. These are specified in the fuero (municipal charter), which regulated matters such as protection from assault, exaction of debts, legal testimony, etc. In 1285 the community of Ciudad Rodrigo was an aljama. After the death of Alfonso ix of León in 1230 the Jewish community of Ciudad Rodrigo was one of the Leonese communities that were attacked and sacked. Nothing is known of how the Jews in Ciudad Rodrigo fared during the anti-Jewish riots in Spain of 1391. The community flourished, however, during the 15th century. In 1439 it paid an annual tax of 1,000 silver maravedis. In 1481 R. Judah of Ciudad Rodrigo was appointed one of the tax farmers of the kingdom; in 1489 Lunbroso Abenaso was granted the considerable sum of 100,000 maravedis on the marriage of his daughter, in recognition of his services to the crown. The Jews of Ciudad Rodrigo formed one of the six aljamas that existed in León on the eve of the Expulsion. Ciudad Rodrigo became a transit station for exiles on their way to Portugal, after the decree of expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492. They were joined by those leaving the city itself. The synagogue had been sequestered in May and given to the municipality for conversion into a church. The Catholic monarchs donated the synagogue to the confraternity of the Passion to convert it into a church and establish a hospital there. The hospital building still exists. Within the convent-hospital there is an ancient church which could have been originally the synagogue. The Jewish quarter was nearby, in the streets of Velayos, Colegios, Campo de Carniceros, and Zurradores.


Baer, Urkunden, 2 (1936), index; A. Millares Carlo, Paleografía española (19362), plate lxxiv; Cantera, in: Sefarad, 2 (1942), 339; Suárez Fernández, Documentos, index. add. bibliography: Á. Bernal Estévez, in: Hispania, 172 (1989), 697–712; F. Sierro Malmierca, Judíos, moriscos e Inquisición en Ciudad Rodrigo (1990).

[Haim Beinart /

Yom Tov Assis (2nd ed.)]