Research Log # 1 The Spanish Inquisition by: Helen Rawlings

Research Log Questions

What did you find?

According to this book, the Inquisition was not as blood thirsty as most people believe. The book contains a table entitled "Categories of crime and numbers of accused dealt with by the Spanish Inquisition, 1540 - 1700". (pg.13) The years of the Inquisition can be separated into four different sets of years, the first of which being the most violent. Also according to this book the Inquisition in Spain was first started in order to deal with the population of Conversos.

Why does it matter?

All three of these points are very important. The idea that the Spanish Inquisition is so violent is one that seems to be a common thought about this time period. The separating of the years of the Inquisition is important because the first few years of the Inquisition is the time period that all of the primary sources that I read took place. This period is also the most violent according to the book, which could account for the tortures that I read about in my primary sources. The fact that the Inquisition was originally started in order to deal with the Conversos and the Jewish practices that they may have continued to do is important because it shows why these people would have been targeted so often in the beginning of the Inquisition and not as much in the later years of the Inquisition.

How did you get there?

I used the UMW Library's online catalog to find this book. I did a general search for "Inquisition" and "Spanish Inquisition".

Did it lead you anywhere? If so, where?

Seeing the chart with all of the numbers of the different types of heresy that people where accused of, makes me want to go look through the other books that I have and see if they have any sort of charts that I can directly compare to this one. I also want to look into the start of the Inquisition more, especially with who was in power of the Inquisition, as it was its own entity. The changes of power within the organization itself can tell me more about the goals that they were trying to accomplish.