Llorente, secretary of the Inquisition in Madrid about 1790, says that during Torquemada’s eighteen years some 8,800 persons in Spain alone were burned.

The Catholic Answers

Llorente is discredited as an historian even by Protestant scholars. He was secretary to the Inquisition, some three hundred years after the death of Torque-mada. But he was false to the Church and was expelled from Spain. After that he wrote his so-called and very biased history, pretending to make use of documents to which he said he had had access. When challenged even in his own day, he said that he had burned all the official papers upon which he had placed reliance. We cannot trust an historian who declares that he destroyed the original documents deliberately. Research has shown that about four thousand deaths occurred at the hands of the Spanish Inquisition during almost three centuries. But even did we accept 8,800 in a period of 18 years, that would work out at an average of some 500 a year. Sir James Stephens, in his History of English Criminal Law, shows that there were about 800 executions a year during the early post-Reformation period in England. Such severity was not due to Catholicism as such, but must be attributed to the general character of the times, which we are all glad have passed. If they have passed—the barbarity of the Great War leaves grave doubts!

Radio Replies Volume 1 by Rev. Dr. Leslie Rumble MSC and Rev. Charles Mortimer Carty

Kindly support The Catholic Answers via PayPal donation.

Select a Donation Option (USD)

Enter Donation Amount (USD)