Silva, Samuel da

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SILVA, SAMUEL DA (16th–17th century), Marrano physician. He was born in *Oporto, Portugal, and later went to Hamburg, where he returned to Judaism. His translation into Spanish of the section on repentance (Hilkhot Teshuvah) from the Mishneh Torah of *Maimonides appeared in Amsterdam in 1613 under the title Tratado de la Tesuvah o Contrición. Subsequently, having read in manuscript a work by Uriel da *Costa critical of the Jewish tradition, da Silva wrote a polemic in reply entitled Tratado da Immortalidade da Alma ("Treatise on the Immortality of the Soul", Amsterdam, 1623), couched in strong language. Da Costa's Examen das tradicoens Phariseas, published in Amsterdam in 1624, was actually a second version of the manuscript that Da Silva had seen. In it Da Costa replied to the attack and referred to his critic as his "lying slanderer" in the subtitle.


S. da Silva, Tratado da Immortalidade del Alma, ed. by De Jong (1935); Kayserling, Bibl, 40, 102; Brugmans-Frank, 517; M. Dos Remedios, Os Judeus Portugueses em Amsterdam (1911), 128–33; H. Kellenbenz, Sephardim an der unteren Elbe (1958), index; Melkman, in: Studia Rosenthaliana, 1:2 (1967), 24–26 (Eng.).