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18:15 - 19:45 31 October 2011

Goa Inquisition and the Repression of the 'New Jews' of Jewish Origin in the 16th-18th centuries


Chadwick Lecture Theatre | Chadwick Building (link Map)
Gower St | London | WC1E 6BT | United Kingdom

Open to: Academic | Alumni | Public | Student
Ticketing: Open

Speaker information

Paolo Aranha, Fellow, Warburg Institute, Paolo Aranha is a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellow of the Warburg Institute, School of Advanced Studies, University of London. He is the author of the book Il Cristianesimo Latino in India nel XVI secolo (2006) and has published articles in Italian and English on the history of the Catholic missions in India during the 16th – 18th centuries.

The Goa Inquisition is probably the least known among all the early modern Catholic "Tribunals of the Faith". Established in 1560 with jurisdiction over all the territories of the Portuguese "Estado da Índia", from East Africa to Japan, this institution was abolished only in 1812. The essential reason for its creation was the perceived need of fighting the "New Christians" of Jewish Sephardic origin that had settled in the Portuguese East, often achieving important positions in the spice trade. The tribunal persecuted them on the charge of "living according to the Mosaic Law", as the Jesuit missionary Francis Xavier complained in a letter of 1546 in which he invited the king of Portugal John III to establish the Inquisition in India. Eventually the tribunal proved to be so effected that the very presence of the "New Christians" in India came to an end


Sara BenIsaac
+44 (0)20 7679 3520 | s.benisaac@ucl.ac.uk

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