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anusim  (Hebrew, 'compelled ones')

Jews who were forced to convert to another faith. Instances of such forced conversion have occurred throughout Christian and Muslim history. Often the anusim attempted to preserve Jewish customs in secret and teach them to their children. (See also marranos.)


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Reprinted with permission from A Concise Encyclopedia of Judaism,
by Dan Cohn-Sherbok
.© Oneworld Publications.