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Petro Kibe

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Petro Kibe was a Japanese Jesuit, resident in Ayutthaya (Siam), who aimed to proselytize in Japan, and was eventually martyred in Edo.

In his early 30s, Kibe journeyed to Rome, where he was ordained as a member of the Society of Jesus. He then made his way to Ayutthaya, via Malacca, arriving there in 1627. He met with the head of the local Japanese community, and expressed his desire to return to Japan to proselytize there, but was told it wasn't possible. Anyone who was suspected of being a Christian, and most especially anyone who admitted to it, was barred from entering the country, or risked being killed. Kibe refused to pretend to be non-Christian, and so remained in Ayutthaya for two years, before securing passage on a Spanish ship bound for Manila, and from there to Nagasaki. Kibe arrived in Nagasaki in 1630, and was formally executed by the shogunate, for his religion, in Edo in 1639.

References

  • Cesare Polenghi, Samurai of Ayutthaya: Yamada Nagamasa, Japanese warrior and merchant in early seventeenth-century Siam. Bangkok: White Lotus Press (2009), 51-52.
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