Records of The Spanish Inquisitionby Andrew Dickson White
The province of Catalonia, of which Barcelona is the capital, was one of the most
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THE manner in which the originals of the following work came into the hands of the translator may be described in a few words. These papers are a part of the Records of the Inquisition of Barcelona, and were obtained during the revolution which broke out at Cadiz in 1819.
The province of Catalonia, of which Barcelona is the capital, was one of the most forward and zealous to embrace the cause of freedom. Its inhabitants have, in all times, been distinguished for their daring and determined spirit, and their ardent love of liberty. The revolution moved with rapid strides from the Isle of Leon to the Ebro. On the twentyeighth of February, 1820, the governor of Tarragona received a summons to repair immediately to Madrid, and in a few days the insurrection burst out in the former place. On the fourteenth of March, two days after this, it exploded at Barcelona.
The first movement of the revolutionary party was to depose the Captain General of the province. This office was then held by Castañas, a royalist. His predecessor was General Villacampa, an officer of some distinction, who had been deprived of the captain-generalship, and banished to Mataró, a small town on the coast, for his attachment to liberal principles. Castañas was forced to resign, and Villacampa was conducted in triumph from his place of banishment to Barcelona, and reinstated in his dignity by the populace.
The government of the city being revolutionized, their next thoughts were directed to the Inquisition, the great engine of priestly oppression, and the object of dread and detestation to the friends of liberty, both political and religious. The vast and gloomy piles of this tribunal, which covered a spot of more than ten times the extent of the Massachusetts State Prison, had been too long the terror of the oppressed and restless Catalonians to escape distinguished notice on this occasion. The populace demanded, with loud cries, of the Captain General, that the Inquisitorial Palace should be thrown open. What answer was given by Villacampa to this demand, does not appear. A body of twenty thousand persons rushed to the Inquisition, stormed at the gates, and demanded admittance. Those within told them to wait a few minutes and the gates should be opened. This interval they improved to make their escape, and in a short time the populace, growing impatient, burst the gates and rushed in.
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