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COEN:

Physician-in-ordinary at the court of Prince Vassile Lupu, hospodar of Moldavia from 1634 to 1654. The dates of his birth and death, and his given name, are unknown. E. Schwarzfeld is of the opinion that Coen was a descendant of Eliezer Cohen of Safed, who had settled in Poland, and one of whose sons, Moses, a rabbi and physician, escaped during the Cossack uprising in 1648 (Carmoly, "Hist. des Médecins Juifs," i. 245, Brussels, 1884). He stood high in favor with the Sultan of Turkey, and when Prince Lupu was in danger of being dethroned, through the intrigues of his enemies, Coen protected him. The sultan entrusted to Coen for transmission to Prince Lupu important documents concerning a secret alliance between Sweden and Russia, the object of which was a joint attack upon Turkey. The government of Venice sought his advice in matters of diplomacy, as appears from two letters of Giovanni Battista Ballarius to the Doge of Venice, dated at Constantinople Feb. 28, 1656, and Jan. 3, 1660. It was probably owing to Coen's influence that enactments in favor of the Jews of Moldavia were issued by Lupu.

Bibliography:
  • E. Schwarzfeld, Le Rôle des Médecins Juifs dans les Principautés Roumaines, Hebr. transl. in Ha-Yeḳeb, p. 68, St. Petersburg, 1894.
S. H. R.
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