This Day in Jewish History 1618: A Tormented Free-thinker Is Excommunicated in Venice

The converso Uriel da Costa returned to Judaism, but didn’t like what he found there – and he suffered for it.

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On or about August 14, 1618, Uriel da Costa, a free-thinking but tormented Jew of Amsterdam, was put under herem – a ban – by the Sephardi rabbi of Venice.