AẒANCOT, Moroccan family. SADIA BEN LEVI AẒANCOT (early 17th century) of Marrakesh taught in Holland and published a paraphrase of the Book of Esther in rhymed prose (Iggeret ha-Purim, Amsterdam, 1647). He transcribed *Maimonides' Guide of the Perplexed into Arabic characters for the Orientalist Jacob Golius. From 1600 to 1770, several members of this family were leaders of the Marrakesh community. Deprived of their possessions by the sultan, they eventually settled in Tangier and played a diplomatic role during the bombardments of Tangier (1844) and the war with Spain (1859–60). MOSES AẒANCOT (19th century) was kidnapped by the Franciscan mission at the age of nine and was converted in Madrid, his godfather being Fernando VII. Moses became a tutor to the future Alfonso XII, and his daughter was lady of honor to Isabella II. His brother DAVID (19th century) was a diplomat and an antiquarian. In Tangier he received Delacroix who painted many portraits of his family, and in 1846 he was host to Alexandre Dumas who wrote at length about him in his Impressions de Voyage.
Benjacob, Oẓar, 13; Neubauer, Cat, nos. 1240, 1438; J.M. Toledano, Ner ha-Ma'arav (1911), 137; I. Larédo, Memorias de un viejo Tangerino (1935), 97–108.
Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.