Autobiographical elements in the writings of kabbalists from the generation of the expulsion

Michal Oron*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter finds the references to ‘developments carried out in ghetto houses’, and these were clearly extensive. Michiel’s declaration provides the first scraps of interesting information on building work commissioned by the owners, documented in greater detail by others later on. As is explained in Marco Ferro’s eighteenth-century legal dictionary, the Jews were not allowed to actually own property in Venice according to early medieval laws, but they could enjoy special contracts regarding ‘the houses where they lived’. Thus the first documentary evidence that an intensive building programme was in progress, one which led to the ‘purchase’ by Levantine Jews of land for building purposes in the Ghetto Vecchio, dates to 1560. This development meant that in the mid-seventeenth century the Jews and the income obtained from their property were regarded with less suspicion and doubt from both a political and social point of view.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationJews, Christians, and Muslims in the Mediterranean World After 1492
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781135299743
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2014


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