Queen Isabella (1451-1505) daughter of King John II of Castile and Queen Isabella of Portugal has been accredited for some of the most famous accomplishments of medieval Spain. Through her succession to the Castilian throne in 1479 Isabella created a secular government, which enabled her to restore the monarch's power and wealth, and gave her a wide reaching authority over her kingdom. The Queen, being a pious Catholic, reestablished Catholicism as the official religion of Castile and brought forward a tribunal to help her reinforce her desires for sincere Christian piousness and to bring retribution to those who were heretical and insincere in their new conversions to the Catholic faith. This Spanish tribunal was established in 1478, blessed by Pope Sixtus IV, and would eventually become infamously known as the Black Legend or the Spanish Inquisition. Through the disguise of a religious tribunal the Queen's Inquisition performed a duel purpose; acting as a secret police with long reaching tentacles that created as much fear and terror to the kingdom as its tribunal Auto de Fe's. The social-religious context of Castilian life changed drastically underneath Isabella's Inquisition, whose direct influence caused the Jewish population to faltered and be ultimately expelled in 1492. Queen Isabella's ambitions, both secular and religious, brought the abrupt ending of seven hundred years of religious blending known as the Convivencia throughout her kingdom and created a large newly converted Catholic community named the Conversos that would ultimately challenge the old Christian communities and the Spanish Inquisition for the next three centuries to maintain their rightful place in Castilian society.
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Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Arts and Humanities -- Dissertations, Academic; Dissertations, Academic -- Arts and Humanities
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Nykanen, Lori, "Queen Isabella and the Spanish Inquisition: 1478-1505" (2014). HIM 1990-2015. 1680.