A family whose members were descendants of the Spanish exiles, and are found mainly in Amsterdam and Hamburg. The earliest known member appears to have been Reuel Jesurun.

Daniel Jesurun:

Preacher and president of an educational institute at Amsterdam, founded in 1682 and annexed to the charitable institution Maskil el Dal. "He sang verses of the Scripture for an hour on feast-days and half an hour on the Sabbath."

  • De Barrios, Maskil el Dal, p. 142;
  • idem, Arbol de las Vidas, p. 93.
David Jesurun (Jessurun, Jeshurun):

Spanish poet; died at Amsterdam at the beginning of the seventeenth century. He wrote verses in early youth, and hence was called "poeta niño" (= "the little poet"). His poems in manuscript were in the possession of Benjamin Belmonte. Daniel Levi de Barrios published a number of them, among others a eulogy of the city of Amsterdam, in which place Jesurun found a refuge from the Spanish Inquisition; also some verses on his circumcision and a Portuguese sonnet on the death of the martyr Diego de la Asumçaõ.

  • De Barrios, Triumpho del Govierno Popular, pp. 74 et seq.;
  • Kayserling, Sephardim, p. 177;
  • Grätz, Gesch. 3d ed., ix. 484.
Isaac Jesurun:

Victim of a false accusation in Ragusa in the seventeenth century; died in Jerusalem. Jesurun, an old man, was accused by a Christian woman, who had robbed and killed the daughter of a Christian merchant of Ragusa, of having persuaded her to commit the crime in order to provide blood for the celebration of the Jewish holy day. On Sept. 19, 1622, Isaac was taken prisoner and racked six times in the most cruel manner. Though he still insisted that the accusation was false, he was sentenced to twenty years' imprisonment in a cave. He was accordingly chained naked in a very narrow room specially prepared, where he was given as nourishment nothing but bread and water, which were passed him through a hole.

Sir George Jessel.

When several of the judges who had sentenced the innocent man died suddenly, the others regarded this as a punishment from God, and released Jesurun after three years' confinement. Jesurun, who survived all the tortures and hardships, traveled throughout Italy, where those who had heard of his sufferings looked on him with wonder. Several years later he died, as stated above, in Jerusalem.

Isaac Jesurun's brother Joseph was president of the Talmud Torah in Hamburg, and died there Oct. 7, 1660.

  • Aaron ha-Kohen, Ma'aseh Yeshurun (appended to Shemen ha-Ṭob), Venice, 1657;
  • reprinted in Ma'aseh Nissim (1798);
  • Manasseh ben Israel, Vindiciœ Judœorum, p. 10 (German transl. in Mendelssohn, Rettung der Juden [Gesammelte Schriften, iii. 215]);
  • Memorable Relacion de Ishac Jesurun, a Spanish translation of the Ma'aseh Yeshurun, still in MS.;
  • Grunwald, Portugiesen-Gräber, p. 113.
Isaac ben Abraham Ḥayyim Jesurun:

Haham of the Portuguese congregation in Hamburg; died there March 19, 1655. He was the author of "Panim Ḥadashot" (Venice, 1651), a short compilation of ritual ordinances according to the ritual codices, containing also an index to the collection of published decisions after Joseph Caro. The "Sefer ha-Zikronot" of Samuel Aboab was falsely ascribed to Jesurun. He wrote also, in Portuguese, "Liuro da Providencia Divina" (Amsterdam, 1663), wherein he makes philosophical reflections on the nature and results of divine providence. He was succeeded by Isaac Jesurun of Venice as haham of the community on Aug. 16, 1656.

  • Wolf, Bibl. Hebr. i., iii., No. 1211;
  • De Rossi-Hamberger, Hist. Wörterb. p. 147;
  • Fürst, Bibl. Jud. ii. 65;
  • Kayserling, Bibl. Esp.-Port.-Jud. p. 53.
Reuel (Rohel) Jesurun (alias Paul de Pina):

Portuguese poet; born in Lisbon; died in Amsterdam after 1630. He went to Rome in 1599 to become a monk. His cousin Diego Gomez (Abraham Cohen) Lobato, a Marano like himself, gave him a letter to the physician Eliau Montalto, at that time living at Leghorn, which, translated, runs as follows: "Our cousin Paul de Pina is going to Rome to become a monk. I would be much obliged to you, sir, if you would dissuade him therefrom." Montalto succeeded in doing so, and Paul de Pina, who as an avowed believer in Judaism called himself Reuel Jesurun, returned to Portugal. He went with Lobato to Brazil in 1601, and thence to Amsterdam (1604).

Jesurun became a very active member of the first congregation in Amsterdam, and belonged to those who drew up the earliest regulations (1614) for the cemetery which the new congregation had bought. In 1624 he composed songs which were recited by seven youths at the Shabu'ot festival in the first synagogue at Amsterdam. These were published under the title "Wikkuaḥ Shib'ah Harim: Dialogo dos Montes," Amsterdam, 1767. The book was dedicated by Aaron de Chaves, the editor, to the "virtuous" David de Aaron Jesurun, president of the congregation.

In the possession of the Portuguese congregation in Amsterdam is Jesurun's manuscript "Liuro de Beth Ahaim do K. K. de Beth Jahacob."

  • Kayserling, Sephardim, pp. 175 et seq., 340 et seq., followed by Grätz, Gesch. ix. 520 et seq., x. 4;
  • Kayserling, Bibl. Esp.-Port.-Jud. p. 89.
Samuel Jesurun:

Physician at Amsterdam in 1650.

G. M. K.
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