Dona Gracia Nasi: First Lady of the Age of Exploration

29 Pages Posted: 15 Jun 2014 Last revised: 14 Jan 2019

See all articles by Barbara Pfeffer Billauer

Barbara Pfeffer Billauer

Institute of World Politics; International Program in Bioethics, U. of Porto; Foundation for Law and Science Centers, Inc.

Date Written: December 20, 2018

Abstract

Dona Gracia Nasi, born in 1510, and her family were responsible for financing the expeditions of Vasco da Gama and Cabral and for marketing the spices and gems procured through these voyages throughout Europe. A Maranno who financed the kingdoms of Portugal, the Holy Roman Emperor and the French, Dona Gracia was forced to flee each one of these countries to avoid being exposed as a secret Jew. Eventually, she settled in Constantinople, where she persuaded Suleiman the Magnificent to give her the leasehold on the City of Tiberias in Palestine, which was govered by her son-in-law, the Duke of Naxos, under her instructions.

The first three chapters of her life are written here in a manner suitable for young adults -- and their parents.

Keywords: age of exploration, pedro nunes, abraham zacuto, astrolabe, vasco da gama, cabral, spice trade, pepper trade, dona gracia nasi, dona gracia, tiberius,

JEL Classification: N40, N45

Suggested Citation

Billauer, Barbara P., Dona Gracia Nasi: First Lady of the Age of Exploration (December 20, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2446888

Barbara P. Billauer (Contact Author)

Institute of World Politics ( email )

1521 16th St NW,
Washington, DC
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+1 202-462-2101 (Phone)

International Program in Bioethics, U. of Porto ( email )

Rua Dr. Roberto Frias
4200-464 Porto
Portugal

Foundation for Law and Science Centers, Inc. ( email )

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United States
972 54 344 6055 (Phone)

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