|Seal of the Tribunal in Spain.Tribunal of the Holy Office of the Inquisition in Spain|
Tribunal del Santo Oficio de la Inquisición
Saturday, April 11, 2015
Documentary BBC History - The Spanish Inquisition - Inquisición española - documenatario
The Tribunal of the Holy Office of the Inquisition (Spanish: Tribunal del Santo Oficio de la Inquisición,) commonly known as the Spanish Inquisition (Inquisición española), was established in 1478 by Catholic Monarchs Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile. It was intended to maintain Catholic orthodoxy in their kingdoms and to replace the Medieval Inquisition, which was under Papal control. It became the most substantive of the three different manifestations of the wider Christian Inquisition along with the Roman Inquisition and Portuguese Inquisition.
The Inquisition was originally intended in large part to ensure the orthodoxy of those who converted from Judaism and Islam. This regulation of the faith of the newly converted was intensified after the royal decrees issued in 1492 and 1501 ordering Jews and Muslims to convert or leave Spain.
Various motives have been proposed for the monarchs' decision to found the Inquisition such as increasing political authority, weakening opposition, suppressing conversos, profiting from confiscation of the property of convicted heretics, reducing social tensions, and protecting the kingdom from the danger of a fifth column.
The body was under the direct control of the Spanish monarchy. It was not definitively abolished until 1834, during the reign of Isabella II, after a period of declining influence in the previous century.
The Spanish Inquisition is often cited in literature and history as an example of Catholic intolerance and repression. Modern historians have tended to question earlier and possibly exaggerated accounts concerning the severity of the Inquisition. Although records are incomplete, estimates of the number of persons charged with crimes by the Inquisition range up to 150,000 with 2,000 to 5,000 people actually executed.