Torquemada, Tomas de


Torquemada, Tomas de
(1420–98)
   Inquisitor.
   Torquemada was a nephew of the Spanish theologian Juan de Torquemada. He joined the Dominican Order and in 1452 he became the Prior of Santa Cruz Convent in Segovia, Spain. He was appointed Confessor to King ferdinand and Queen isabella and in 1483 he became Grand Inquisitor of Spain. Ruthless in his determination to root out heresy, he was the author of the Compilación de las Instrucciones de la Santa Inquisición, in which he described his methods. He did not hesitate to employ torture to extract confessions and about two thousand people were burnt to death for their religious opinions. He was also largely responsible for the expulsion of the Jews from the Spanish realms in 1495. He was an ascetic, devout man, but, judged by the values of today, he seems the personification of cruelty and intolerance.
   T. Hope, Torquemada, Scourge of the Jews (1939);
   R. Sabatini, Torquemada and the Spanish Inquisition (1913).

Who’s Who in Christianity . 2014.

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