Walter Hilliger
Homme de lettres

Triumphs of Poverty (Los Triunfos de la Pobreza) by David Nieto

Three centuries ago, David Nieto (1654 – 1728) entrusted to the Sephardic community in London some of the secrets behind the Merkabah, a divine Chariot seen by the Hebrew Biblical prophets.
In the oldest synagogue of the United Kingdom, Bevis Marks, Nieto addressed the congregation in Judeo-Spanish and revealed in a poetic sermon the meaning behind Ezekiel’s vision of the chariot and its mystical ascent into heaven. His glorification of poverty, according to Kabbalah, sparked great controversy with the materialistic mainstream thought of 18th-century England. Triumphs of Poverty was buried in time and the publication was never translated into English.
This first unabridged bilingual edition has been expanded to include various sources omitted in the original transcript.

Much has been written on David Nieto, q.v. Moritz Steinschneider, Jewish Literature, (1967) p. 263; Israel Zinberg, Toledot Safrut Yisrael, vol. 3, pp. 243-44; especially Cecil Roth, Essays and Portraits in Anglo Jewish History, 113-29, later translated into Hebrew in the Mossad Rav Kook 1968 edition Mateh Dan; Raphael Loewe, “The Spanish Supplement to Nieto’s Esh Dath,” Proceedings of the American Academy for Jewish Research 48 (1981): 267-296; and David B. Ruderman, “Jewish Thought in Newtonian England: The Career and Writings of David Nieto (In Memory of Jacob J. Petuchowski),” Proceedings of the American Academy for Jewish Research 58 (1992): 193-219, later expanded in his work,Jewish Thought and Scientific Discovery in Early Modern Europe, 310-31; an article by Matt Goldish, “The Spirit of the Eighteenth Century in the Anti-Sabbatean Polemics of Hakham David Nieto,” in Jeremy D. Popkin, ed., The Legacies of Richard Popkin(=International Archives of the History of Ideas – Archives internationales d’ histoire des idées,no. 198 [2008]), 229-243.

About the Author
Walter Hilliger is a French Caribbean writer, translator, and publisher of manuscript writings and facsimiles of Sephardic authors of the Grand Siècle, notably Isaac Orobio (1617 - 1787), R. David Nieto (1654 - 1728), Menasseh Ben Israel (1604-1657), R. Moses Raphael d'Aguilar (1615 - 1679) and others. He transcribed, restored, and digitized millions of words generating thousands of translated pages into current Spanish and English.
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