The Origins of the Inquisition in Fifteenth Century Spain

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New York Review of Books, 2001 - History - 1384 pages
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The Spanish Inquisition remains a fearful symbol of state terror. Its principal target was theconversos, descendants of Spanish Jews who had been forced to convert to Christianity some three generations earlier. Since thousands of them confessed to charges of practicing Judaism in secret, historians have long understood the Inquisition as an attempt to suppress the Jews of Spain. In this magisterial reexamination of the origins of the Inquisition, Netanyahu argues for a different view: that the conversos were in fact almost all genuine Christians who were persecuted for political ends. The Inquisition's attacks not only on the conversos' religious beliefs but also on their "impure blood" gave birth to an anti-Semitism based on race that would have terrible consequences for centuries to come.

This book has become essential reading and an indispensable reference book for both the interested layman and the scholar of history and religion.
  

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The origins of the Inquistion in fifteenth century Spain

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Modest in title but monumental in scope, this book is easily the finest study of the Inquisition to appear in this, or arguably any, century. Netanyahu (A Place Among the Nations: Israel and the World ... Read full review

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An excellent and wise perspective from Netanyahu. The role played by the Catholic Church did not ceased at the witch hunt, it continued right into Hitlerism in Germany. The fact that Hitler had never been excommunicated by the Vatican does give some supporting evidence to what Netanyahu wrote. Having read several versions with almost similar explanation this one presented the case convincingly that the inquisition did not end with witch hunt but continued into modern time in the form of "impure blood" that gave birth to an anti-Semitism based on race that reached its pinnacle in Hitler' Germany. The impact of this bloody and inhumane practice devised by the Vatican is long lasting.  

Contents

The Jewish Question
3
The Spanish Scene
28
The Struggle for Monarchic Superiority
217
The Great Debate
351
The SentenciaEstatuto
367
Converso CounterAttack
385
Juan de Torquemada
421
Second Attack on the Conversos
486
The Alboraique
848
Alonso de Oropesa
855
The Chroniclers of Enrique IV
897
The Early Period
915
The Major Causes
925
The SocialEconomic Reasons
950
Sidelights and Afterthoughts
1048
The Insidious Pretext
1074

The Privilege
512
Diego de Valera
578
The Political Views of the Toledan Rebels
584
Old Christian Apologies for the Conversos
606
Alonso D1az de Montalvo
619
The Cronicas
628
Reverses and Triumphs
662
End of Alvaro de Luna
681
Closing the Circle
709
His Aims and Tactics
715
The Delusive Peace
724
Later Old Christian Controversy
814
Expulsion
1087
A The Number of the Marranos in Spain
1095
B Diego de Anaya and His Advocacy of Limpieza
1103
Juan de Torquemada
1110
On the Reliability of Torquemadas Testimony
1117
F The Death of Enrique IV
1127
When Did It Begin?
1133
J Racism in Germany and Spain
1141
K The Converso Conspiracies Against the Inquisition
1147
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
1349
Copyright

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