The Jew and The Pope

  • From the Publisher
May 13, 2013

It is 1542 in Rome and Pope Paul III has decid­ed to re-insti­tute the Inqui­si­tion under the lead­er­ship and influ­ence of Car­di­nal Carafa. The Jew­ish com­mu­ni­ty, most­ly Sephardic, has the his­to­ry of expul­sions from Spain and Por­tu­gal embed­ded in their mem­o­ries. The rab­bini­cal leader of a syn­a­gogue, who is also doc­tor and friend to the Pope, tries to under­stand actu­al inci­dents that presage dan­ger to the com­mu­ni­ty. Should a Pas­sion Play that incites peo­ple to vio­lence, the sud­den rant­i­ngs of Domini­can Fri­ars in his syn­a­gogue, and the unjust jail­ing and poten­tial exe­cu­tion of his son be enough rea­son for he and his wife to con­sid­er leav­ing their beloved city? The Coun­cil of Trent and the actions of Mar­tin Luther also under­score the sto­ry, along with artists, Tit­ian and Michelan­ge­lo and their works. The author per­sua­sive­ly nar­rates a sto­ry that helps us under­stand how polit­i­cal events bedev­il indi­vid­u­als who strug­gle to see their significance.

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