is columbus jewish?

Jack Kilmon jkilmon at historian.net
Tue Jul 23 11:43:20 EDT 2002


----- Original Message -----
From: <diegorai at bol.com.br>
To: "Biblical Hebrew" <b-hebrew at franklin.metalab.unc.edu>
Sent: Monday, July 22, 2002 3:42 PM
Subject: is columbus jewish?


> Hi Everybody,
>
> i just entered the mailing list and found it very
> interesting. First of all, i want to beg excuses for my
> english, since i'm brazilian and don't know it a lot.
> With the time, you'll get to know me, by now i can say
> i'm 16 years old, i study the old testament since i was
> a child, in the hebrew language, cause its easier to me
> since i was born in Jerusalem, and hebrew is my tongue
> mother.
> I was reading the messages and i saw some of them where
> you were discussing if Columbus is Jew or not. Well, i
> think it really doesn't matter, since he gave a good
> contribution of ideas to the world, but there is a thing
> that can e viewed at another way.
> He knew the world was spheric, because he is jew.
> Yes, that is. By being Jewish, certainly he read (past)
> the jewish books, such as the Talmud, that is an
> interpretation of Torah (old testment). In Talmud is
> written that the World is like an orange. This is
> written almost 3000 thousand years before Columbus
> birth. So, probabbly he knew that, like many other jews,
> that believed the Torah and read (past) the Talmud.
> Sorry if this message is not on the topic, but i tought
> it is interesting to know.

Columbus landed on San Salvador, not Fantasy Island.  Christopher Columbus
knew the world was a globe because everyone in the 15th century knew that.
Columbus did not "discover" it.  He was a Roman Catholic and. like most
Catholics, was probably anti-Jewish and I doubt he knew what the Talmud was.
Columbus was looking to get rich in the spice and silk trade with a shorter
route to Asia.  He died in 1507 still believing San Salvador was the Indies
and Cuba was Japan.  He subjugated and enslaved the native Americans he
encountered and captured 1500 of them to being back as slaves. He was the
first New World slave trader.  After the Arawaks rescued Columbus and his
crew from the reefed Santa Maria and fed them, Columbus wrote in his
journal,  "They have no iron. Their spears are made of cane .... With fifty
men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want." which is
exactly what Columbus did.  When the indians could not come up with enough
gold, Columbus had their hands chopped off and let them bleed to death.  The
brutality against the Indians in the lust for gold, slaves and profit is
unmeasurable and 3 million Indians were dead within a few years.  Every ship
that Columbus filled with native men, women and children, half died in their
little cages guarded by dogs before reaching Spain.  The Indian population
of the West Indies was wiped out completely by slave labor, torture, rape
and murder.  I am sorry, but the fairy tales about Columbus may be nice on
Columbus day and picnics in the park but he is no one who "gave a good
contribution of ideas to the world" nor anyone to be proud enough to
fantasize as being Jewish.  The Talmud, btw, does not date to 1500 BCE.
Rabbi Judah the Prince began recording the Oral Law around 200 CE and the
Jerusalem Talmud was not completed ubtil 425 CE, the BabTal around 500 CE.
The Rabbis in late antiquity knew the earth was a globe but Yeshaya in the
8th century BCE did not...and to get back to topic, ol chuwg ha'aretz (Isa
40:22) MOST likely does NOT refer to a globe meaning that it was known that
the earth was spherical...not in the 8th century BCE.

Jack




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