By Cecil Roth
Original 12 months of publication: 1932
The list of the "New Christians" is an inseparable a part of the tales of Spain and Portugal, on the interval in their maximum brilliance. It constitutes a basic, even though tragic, bankruptcy of ecclesiastical background. It touches at the lifetime of each kingdom of Western Europe within the seventeenth and 18th centuries, at the most important issues. it's the historical past to the biography of numerous people of the top eminence, either within the Peninsula and overseas. It had very important reactions in politics, literature, technological know-how and trade. all through, it obtained lurid illumination from the flares of the autos-da-fe.
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Extra resources for A History of the Marranos
However dubious their sincerity, it was now out of the question to exclude them from any walk of life on the ground of their creed. The Law, the administration, the army, the universities, the Church itself,4 were all overrun by recent converts of more or less questionable sincerity, or by their immediate descendants. They thronged the financial administration, for which they had a natural aptitude, protest being now impossible. They pushed their way into the municipal councils, into the legislatures, into the judiciary.
By a papal brief of February 11, 1482, seven other Inquisitors were nominated—amongst them Thomás de Torquemada, the Queen’s fanatical confessor. Other appointments followed at intervals. Additional tribunals were speedily organized at Jaen, Ciudad Real, Cordova, and probably also at Segovia. At Cordova, among the victims of the earliest auto-de-fé was the mistress of the Treasurer of the Cathedral, who was himself burned in the following year. The tribunal of Ciudad Real was intended for the province of Toledo.
They were, nevertheless, forced back, the leaders being killed and their bodies hanged head downwards from the public gallows—the execution traditionally reserved for Jews. All attempts to punish the city were in vain, and the citizens refused to admit the troops sent to chastise the malefactors. An emergency court was organized to discuss whether the conversos could hold any public office. In spite of the outspoken clerical opposition, a quasi-judicial pronouncement known as the Sentencia Estatuto was passed.
A History of the Marranos by Cecil Roth