The Spanish Inquisition and the Americas Term Paper by Master Researcher

The Spanish Inquisition and the Americas
An analysis of the Inquisition in Spain and the New World.
# 43955 | 2,400 words | 9 sources | MLA | 2002 | US
Published on Nov 11, 2003 in History (U.S. Before 1865) , Jewish Studies (General)

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This paper examines and analyzes the ways the Inquisition in the Americas differed from its counterpart in the Iberian Peninsula in terms of origins, purpose, success, popular support and severity. The paper explains the prevalent beliefs during the centuries of the Inquisition and provides the definition of a heretic. The paper also notes that there were two Inquisitions, the second one being the more notorious Spanish Inquisition that functioned to identify Jews and Moors who falsely converted to Christianity and secretly practiced their former religion.

From the Paper:

"These historians agree that an apostolic Inquisition existed in parts of Iberia prior to the reign of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, for the most part because of the growing hostility of the people against Jews and Moors. Archdeacon Martinez of Seville and was one of the most virulent enemies of Jews in all of Iberia during the fourteenth century, and incited passionate hatred of the Jews for many years. (Roth 17-18)
"It should be noted that church inquisitors did not conduct any investigations in the kingdoms of Castile and Leon until the request of the Catholic majesties. It is also important to understand that Ferdinand and Isabella, for a number of pressing reasons, sought a unified population which had one religion and culture. In order to achieve this, they felt they had to eradicate Jews and Moors, who were considered heretics and regarded as a discordant element in their kingdoms. They were aware that to pursue such a course would be economically damaging to the kingdom, but King Ferdinand believed "that spiritual ideals were more important than material considerations about the economy." (Kamen 4)"

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