1590 - 1640 URIEL ACOSTO (Amsterdam, Holland)
A descendant of a Marrano family, he was raised as a Christian and became chief treasurer of an abbey. Acosto decided to return to Judaism after studying the Old Testament. He fled to Amsterdam, where he grew disillusioned and attacked Jewish tradition. He was excommunicated, reinstated and excommunicated again. He found the disciplinary penance offered him in the presence of the congregation too difficult and committed suicide.