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“Nobody Expects the Spanish Inquisition!”

In my experience, most people who joke about the horrors of the Spanish Inquisition and/or even seriously believe it don’t even know why the inquisition existed and what it really did.

Well, the why and the what can be a long discussion and is beside the point in this post. The point is that the purported horrors is basically 450-plus-year-old fake news.

The documentary Timewatch: The Myth of the Spanish Inquisition explores this. It was produced in 1994 by BBC, believe it or not. At approximately 45 minutes running time, it is a conveniently brief treatment of the subject without being too brief.

Given the running time, its only weakness is that the introduction is overly simplistic as it does not discuss in more detail the reason for the founding of the Spanish Inquisition. After all, the historical context is important and has wider implications. Nevertheless, it gets the point across regarding its current image: that the myth of the Spanish Inquisition is the result of anti-Catholic Protestant propaganda with a little help from the printing press.


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