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GAON:

An influential Jewish family in Vitoria, Spain.

Don Gaon:

Chief farmer of taxes under Henry IV. of Castile, whose suite he accompanied through the Basque territory on the way to S. Juan de Luz on the Spanish-French frontier. During his stay in Fuenterrabia, the king sent Gaon to Guipuzcoa to collect the tribute. The hidalgos of Guipuzcoa regarded this demand as an encroachment on the old statutory rights, and murdered Gaon on his arrival in Tolosa (May 6, 1463). The king at once proceeded with his troop of cavalry to take revenge. In the first outburst of his anger he desired to destroy the city. The house in which the Jew had been murdered was already torn down, when the leading inhabitants of the town appeared before the king, and resigned the old privileges which they had dearly bought with life and blood. This appeased the king, and he desisted from further punishment for Gaon's murder.

Eliezer Gaon:

Merchant in Vitoria; son of the preceding. In 1482, together with Eliezer Tello and Moses Balid, he held the office of tax-collector in Vitoria.

Samuel Benjamin Gaon:

Member of the deputation which, toward the end of June, 1492, in the name of the Jewish community, made an irrevocable present of the Jewish cemetery, with all its appurtenances, to the city of Vitoria.

Bibliography:
  • Kayserling, Gesch. der Juden in Spanien, i. 121 et seq., 128 et seq., 214 et seq.
G. M. K.
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