Spanish Inquisition, the Tribunal of the holy office of the inquisition. History and victims of the Spanish inquisitors in medieval times and in early new age. Story of Tomas De Torquemada.
History of Spanish Inquisition
The Spanish Inquisition which is actually the Tribunal of the holy office of the inquisition was established by Ferdinand II of Aragon, Catholic Monarchs and Isabella I of Castile in the year 1478. The reason for establishing this inquisition was to keep the catholic orthodoxy alive in their kingdoms and replace the medieval inquisition that was controlled by Papal. This inquisition was essence of 3 different manifestations i.e. the Portuguese Inquisition, the Christian Inquisition and the Roman Inquisition.
This inquisition originated to ensure orthodoxy of the people who had converted from Islam and Judaism. This newly converted faith became official when the royal decrees issued a law ordering the Jews and the Muslim to convert to the new faith or leave in the year 1492 and 1501.
The Monarchs had presented a number of different motives to justify their newly inquisition. A few of them included weakening the opposition, increasing the political authority, destroying Conversos, reducing the social tension, confiscating the property of the convicted heretics and getting profit from it and lastly protect the kingdom from the 5th column.
The Spanish Inquisition was under the control of the Spanish Monarchy of course. This system prevailed until the year 1834 when Isabella II came to rule. Initially the target of the Spanish Inquisition was only the Conversos. They were to be converted to Christianity. The body forced a number of Jewish and Muslim families to convert to Christianity. Those who protested were also targeted later. However, the families of the former Jews were the main target. The focus was on converting people to Christianity. This gave birth to the distinction of old and new Christianity. There was no surety that the formers of the families had faith in the family history.
That was a really tragic and miserable time period.
Tomas De Torquemada was the 1st Inquisitor General of the inquisition. The tame endeavors like censorship of the books were not enough. Spain was also engaged in torture practices. The Jews heretics were forced to convert to the Catholic faith if they were to live in the country.
During the reign of Charles IV, a number of such events took place that resulted in the decline of the inquisition. Even today Spain is still a Catholic country but there are other religions that are also recognized in the country. The Spanish Inquisition was called the Black Myth by the Spanish people.
Victims of Spanish inquisition
Spanish inquisitors executed about 5000 convicts in 150 000 processes (10% of total European “witchcraft” executions).