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1.0 out of 5 stars
Sheer torture ... and thats's just the book, 11 Aug. 2004
As Henry Kamen revealed in his study,The Spanish Inquisition:An Historical Revision, which Baigent and Leigh appear not to have read, the Spanish Inquisition was soon reduced to toothless impotence. Most scholars now agree that its fearsome reputation post-1500 is a Protestant myth.
Are the authors unaware of such research (their thin bibliography includes not one Spanish source)or does it simply not accord with the story they wish to tell ?
My guess is that the subtext of The Inquisition has to do with Baigent and Leigh's imagined persecution at the hands of orthodox scholars. Their effort is littered with schoolboy howlers: Galileo was not thrown in prision for the last eight years of his life, the anti-contraception encyclical Humane Vitae was not an infallible statement, Catholics pray to Mary but do not worship her.
What offended me most about this book was not its contents but its seductively smart presentation by Viking: it makes my blood run cold to think that someone might mistake it for the work of scholarship.