Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World

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Nasi, Gracia Mendes
(1,130 words)

Gracia Nasi (Gracia Mendes, 1510?-1569) was the mother-in-law and business partner of Joseph Nasi, and a trader, banker, philanthropist, stateswoman and patron of Jewish activities in her own right. She was born Beatrix Luna (Beatrice de la Luna) in Lisbon to a family of wealthy Spanish Jews who had moved to Portugal after the expulsion in 1492, and there converted and lived as New Christians. At the age of eighteen, Gracia married Francisco Mendes, a relative and fellow converso with whom she had a daughter, Reyna.

The Mendeses were a merchant family that traded in spices and m…

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Marianna D. Birnbaum, “Nasi, Gracia Mendes”, in: Encyclopedia of Jews in the Islamic World, Executive Editor Norman A. Stillman. Consulted online on 27 February 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1878-9781_ejiw_SIM_0016520>
First published online: 2010
First print edition: ISBN: 978900417678, 3447

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