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BONAFOUX, DANIEL ISRAEL:

An active adherent of Shabbethai Ẓebi; lived at Smyrna in the seventeenth century. He was not disappointed when the apostasy of the latter was announced. At Shabbethai's death he pretended to have had visions and to have received the gift of prophecy. He maintained that Shabbethai was not dead, but hidden, and that he would reappear after forty-five years.

People at that time were so excited that every charlatan found followers. Realizing the danger of such a state of things, the rabbinate of Smyrna addressed itself to the cadi and obtained the banishment of Bonafoux. He then settled with his followers at the small town of Kasaba, near Smyrna, where he continued his preaching. At the same epoch, Abraham Michael Cardoso, the founder of cabalistic dualism, who had been banished from Tripoli for misconduct, arrived at Smyrna and found in Bonafoux a warm friend. The agitation begun by Bonafoux lasted for several years, until he, like his master, Shabbethai Ẓebi, embraced Islam.

Bibliography:
  • Emden, Torat ha-Ḳenaot, ed. Lemberg, p. 55;
  • David Kahana, Eben ha-To'im, p. 55;
  • Grätz, Gesch. der Juden, x. 301.
D. I. Br.
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