Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition

[Spanish Inquisition]. (Incipit:) "Vista por nos los inquisidores contra la heretica pravedad y apostasia en los obispados de Cuenca e Siguenza [...] acusado Geronimo pintor morisco vezino de Calanda en Aragon y natural de la villa de Arcos [...] como aficionado por la maldita secta de Mahoma [...]".

Cuenca, 28. X. 1575.

Folio (222 x 320 mm). Spanish manuscript, ink on paper. 10 pp. on 3 bifolia. With the convict's autograph signature under the abjuration ("Yo Gereonimo el pyntor" - "I, Geronimo, the painter"). Stored in a modern cloth portfolio with title label.

 9,500.00

Very rare handwritten judgment of the Spanish Inquisition with autograph signature of the accused who - "descending from generations of Moors" - was convicted for secretly belonging to the "damned Muhammadan sect" and for observing related religious rites and ceremonies such as the Ramadan: "Vista por nos los inquisidores contra la heretica pravedad y apostasia en los obispados de Cuenca e Siguenza [...] Un proceso de pleito con causa criminal [...] el acusado Geronimo pintor morisco vezino de Calanda en Aragon y natural de la villa de Arcos [...] como aficionado por la maldita secta de Mahoma y como hombre descendiente de generaciones de moros [...]". The manuscript comprises the complete verdict with the sentence to punishment as a galley slave, as well as to flogging and prison.

The craftsman and painter Geronimo was a so-called Morisco, that is, a baptised Muslim who had converted to Christianity either voluntarily or, more commonly, under duress. His fate was shared by thousands of fellow sufferers who were accused of practising crypto-Islamic rites: in spite of being Christianised, Moriscos lived permanently under the suspicion of heresy, and the Inquisition - in line with Valencia's desire for union in the re-established Catholic kingdom - encouraged denunciations. The years following the Rebellion of the Alpujarras (1568-71) were marked by resettlements of Moriscos from Andalusia to Castile to reduce their influence and to disperse majorities, a fate of which Geronimo - a native of Arcos in Andalusia, but based at Calanda in Aragon during the proceedings and convicted in the Castilian city of Cuenca - is a good example.

Unsewn bifolia, brittle and weakened in the folds, a few leaves entirely separated. With two additional signatures by the reporters or "qualificadores" for the "Santo Oficio", whose task was the categorization of the defendant and his offences, one by the Catholic prelate and inquisitor of Cuenca, Diego Gómez de La Madrid. Original Spanish Inquisition documents are rarely encountered in the trade, and this is the first we have seen with the condemned man's signature, in this case a simple but literate painter.

Stock Code: BN#52325 Tags: , , ,