lunes, 30 de noviembre de 2020

Auschwitz, by León Felipe (Tábara, Zamora, 1884 – Mexico City, 1968)

To all Jews in the world,  my friends, my brethren

Those infernal poets,
Dante, Blake, Rimbaud…
keep it quiet…
don’t play so loud…
Shut up!
Any inhabitant of Earth today
knows more about Hell
than those three poets together.
I am sure Dante plays his violin very well
Oh, what a virtuoso!...
But he shouldn’t pretend now,
with his wonderful tercets, 
and his perfect hendecasyllables,
to scare that Jewish boy who has been ripped
from his parents;
he is alone.
waiting for his turn
in the crematories of Auschwitz.
Dante… you descended deep into the Inferno
guided by Virgil’s hand 
(Virgil, “Gran Cicerone”),
your Divine Comedy was a funny adventure
of music and tourism.
This is different… something else.
How should I explain it?  
if you don’t have imagination!
You… don’t have any imagination,
remember, in your Inferno
there is not a single boy
and the one you see there…
is alone.
He is alone! With no Cicerone…
waiting for the gates of Hell to open, 
a hell that you, poor Florentine,
could not have even imagined it.
This is different, let me explain. 
Look! This is a place where nobody
can play a violin;
all the violin strings in the world will break here. 
Do you understand that, Infernal Poets?
Virgil, Dante, Blake, Rimbaud…
keep it quite!
Don’t play so loud... Shh!...
Shut up!
I am also a great violinist
and I have played in Hell many times…
But now, here
I break my violin… and remain silent.  
Listen to the poem read in Spanish by León Felipe (click here)
Translation into English: Jesús Jambrina
Touchstone, Art & Literature Magazine, Vol. 82
Viterbo University, La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA

León Felipe (Zamora, 1884 – Mexico City, 1968) is considered one of the major poets of the Spanish language in the twentieth century. He was also a playwright, and translator of American writers Walt Whitman and Waldo Frank. He graduated from Pharmacy, which brought him a nomadic life by working in different cities and towns. In 1920 León Felipe published his first poetry book in Madrid, titled The Walker’s Verses and Prayers. Soon after, he traveled to Equatorial Guinea to work at a hospital, and in 1922 he went for the first time to Mexico from where he visited the United States, and Panama. 

In 1936, León Felipe returned to Spain to fight in favor of the Spanish Republic against Francisco Franco’s fascist insurrection. In 1939, after a brief visit to France and Cuba, he returned to Mexico where he lived in exile until his death in 1968. 

León Felipe’s literary style was strongly prophetic with Biblical and Whitmanian influences, meaning a strong humanistic orientation. His writings delve deep into historical thinking as a call for a hopeful and socially just world. Since the arrival of democracy to Spain in 1975, León Felipe’s poetry has been valued as a testimony of the exiles during the Spanish Civil War; many of his poems have been musicalized,  and are greatly appreciated in both sides of the Atlantic as part of the Spanish American literary tradition.

 In 2002, the Zamora City Council in Spain acquired León Felipe’s original manuscripts, including many unpublished works, as the foundation for a future center of studies that will have his name. In 2010 the prestigious Spanish press Visor put in circulation the–so far–most complete collection of his poems. “Auschwitz” is included in the book Oh! This Old and Broken Violin(1965). 

jueves, 22 de octubre de 2020

Jewish, and converso last names from Zamora, Spain

Jewish and converso last names from historical archive documents in Zamora, Spain. Most are from the 11th to the 18th centuries, some are from inquisitorial cases in Portugal, mainly Tras Os Montes, but with residency in Zamora.

Spelling from the original source has been maintained, most are easily transcribable to modern orthography. When the last name is not a direct reference to the city of Zamora, location is included in parenthesis, as well as any other data or information to clarify context on the last name.

After the alphabetical list, there is a copy of Jewish and converso last names after 1492, drawn from a recent academic published article. For questions, comments or suggestions, please, email at 

A - Abadías, Abad de Aula, Abelaben, Abemiver, Abenamar, Abenahypón (Benavente)Abenjamil (Toro), Aben Baça (Baz, Vaz, Abençali), Abenbazar (Fuentesaúco), Abenamías, Aben Farax, Abenrrós, Aben Rubí, Abenzón, Abna, Abohaf (o Aboab), Ámbar, Alashkar, Alba (o Alvo), Albino (Bragança), Abolfazcan (Castroverde de Campos), Alfón, Alonso, Alvarez, Alua, Arama, Aven Sento

B - Bellamín (Villapando), Beny, Berroy (Fermoselle), Bida, Bueno

C - Cabeça (Villalpando), Cañizal, Campantón (también Canpanton, Qanpanton, Kanpanton), Cardero, Carvajal (Bermillo de Sayago y Benavente), Catalán, Castro, Colodre (Toro), Cominete, Comineto (Benavente), Conde, Chamorro, Cedillo, Corcos, Cordero, Çaragoça, Çalama, David (Toro),

D - De la Fuente (Fuentesaúco)

E - Estuñiga

F - Fernández

G - Galochero (Villalpando), Gambuayo, Garçia, Gazapo, Gómez (Toro), Gonçalez,

H - Habib, Ha-Leví (Toro)

J - Jambrina (1994 record from the Jewish Cementery in Madrid), toponym of a town 10 miles Southeast of Zamora.

L - Lopes (Trancoso), Luna

M- Manrique, Marcos (Villalpando), Maldonado, Medina, Méndez (Coimbra), Meir, Milano, Monzón (Alcañices), Musa

N - Naci, Melamed, Nuño de Fito

O- Oeb, Orabuena (Fermoselle), Ortuño (Bragança)

P- Paz, Peres, Pordomingo (Sayago), Portuguesa

R - Rico (Fuentesaúco), Rodríguez, Romi

S - Saba, Salón, San Román, Santa Ana

V - Valçina, Valencia, Valensí, Venialuo, Vida, Villalobos (Villalpando)

T- Tornero, Torralvo,


Z - Zamora (besides the city, also present in Villalpando)

The following last names along with their Christian ones after 1492 were copied from: Martialay,Teresa,  “Conversos y atribución de identidades conversas en tiempos de la expulsión de los judíos de la diócesis de Zamora” en Amrán, Rica & Antonio Cortijo Ocaña, Eds, Minorías en la España medieval y moderna, siglos XVI - XVII, eHumanista, 2017, 33-46

Abraham de Valencia (Fernando de Valencia)
Abraham aben Rubí (Maestre Fadrique)
Jaco de Medina (Fernand Pérez)
Mosé Obadías (Fernando de Miranda)
Rabí Salomón (Tomás)
Ysaque aben Farax (Pedro Osorio)
Yuçe Melamed (Luis Núñez Coronel)
Reyna Corcos (Isabel Osorio)

Abraham aben Baça (Juan de la Peña)

According to Martialay, the following names appear on the documents only as conversos without their Jewish names or last names

Clara (wife of Tomás)
Isabel Fernández (widow of Simuel of Ámbar) and her daughters
Martín Alonso (two persons with the same name)
Fernand Gómez, his wife and children
Manuel Pérez
Isabel Fernández (widow of  Simuel Gambuayo) y her children
Alonso de Zamora
Juan de Zamora
Juan de Valencia
Maese Pedro

sábado, 22 de agosto de 2020

Why supporting Centro Isaac Campanton?

1- We are a group of community Scholars studying Jewish legacy in the region of Zamora, Spain, where Jews lived for more than a millennium
2- Lines of research include:
· Documented Jewish presence from the 10th to the 15th centuries
· Jews from Zamora in the diaspora
· Crypto Jewish communities from 1492 to the present
· B´nei Anusim memories and stories
· Homage to twenty-two antifascist fighters from Zamora incarcerated in Mauthausen
· Help families building their Jewish genealogies
3- Centro Campanton has organized eight international congresses (2013-2020) along with annual cultural events & activities related to Jewish life
4- Collaboration with local organizations, government and academic institutions to recuperate Jewish historic landmarks in the city and in the region
5- Centro Campanton have sponsored books publications, peer reviewed papers, and presentations at conference and events.
6- Current projects we are trying to advance:
· A Jewish Museum in Zamora, to also house the Center
· Publication of congresses proceedings
7- This website chronicles our major programs and if you need more information you can reach us via email at

sábado, 22 de febrero de 2020

Zamographies, July 2-3, 2020 (postponed)


City of Zamora, Spain

Call for Participation
                                                                           Our 2020 annual meeting wants to explore different Jewish branches of the Zamora last name, transliteration included, for example, Zamiro, Zamory, Zamir, Zmiro, Zamero, Zamorano*, in Spain and abroad. 

Genealogy, and the stories around it, allow us to explore itineraries across time and space; our goal is to present live connections among people researching their Jewish ancestry.   

Zamora had an important Jewish population in the Middle Ages, specially between the 11th and the 15th centuries. The first Zamora last name is registered for philosopher, and Kabbalist Abraham ben Solomon of Zamora (13th century), well known to his peers during his time.
Before and after 1492, this toponymic last name was used by judeocoversos, including Gabriel of Zamora, trialled by the inquisition in Seville 1481 (First seizure of marranos), and Alfonso of Zamora, founder of the Hebrew Language Studies at University of Salamanca (16th century), and later professor at Alcala de Henares. At the end of his life, he called himself “the last sage of Sefarad” (reference in Spanish).           
We invite you to share this Call for Participation with all persons interested in this topic. Enrollment is open to the public and, like every year, it covers several related events and activities like visit to historic Jewish Quarters, book presentations, Sephardic culinary demonstration, concerts and more.

For updates in the coming months you should visit this page or if you have questions, you can email us at or send a WhatsApp to +34 609 740 116

*Transliterations are changes in the word with the same linguistic root (Zam), for example: Zambrano, Zamatto, Zamero, Zamerro, Zamie, Zamlug, Zamra, Zamor, Zamorani, etc. In Portuguese language, Z usually changes to S. Here reference for Zamora last name at The Museum of the Jewish People (click here)

To know more about our previous events, see the pages with summaries: I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII