In the shadow of the Inquisition - Arts & Features

In the shadow of the Inquisition

MARCIA FINE | Special to Jewish News | Posted: Wednesday, March 23, 2016 10:00 am

My research for historical accuracy in my novels has led me around the world, including to Israel, France, Poland, Spain and the Czech Republic. After the success of “The Blind Eye – A Sephardic Journey,” and its award of ONEBOOKAZ in 2015, I began to examine other locations besides Spain and Portugal where the long arm of the Inquisition had an impact on Jewish lives. 

My search was close to home. When the Inquisition expanded to South America to look for Judaizers – people who kept their rituals and traditions in secret after forced conversions, also known as conversos – most were from the Iberian Coast – Spain and Portugal – as well as North Africa and the Middle East, and known as Sephardim. In 1570, an Inquisition office was opened with the purpose of persecution in Lima, Peru. In 1571, the Grand Palace of the Inquisition launched its tribunal in Mexico City. In 1610 Cartegena, Colombia initiated an office of the Inquisition to look for others who were not faithful to the Church.

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