War and Inquisition: Repression in Early Modern Spain
AbstractThe Spanish Inquisition (1478-1834) lasted for more than three centuries and conducted more than 100,000 trials. Why would the Spanish Crown adopt this type of repressive institution? What were the actual motives of its activity? This paper explores the role of the Spanish Inquisition as a repressive tool of the Spanish Crown. When the Crown had to move military resources abroad to fight a war, the likelihood of an internal revolt against the Crown increased. To minimize the threat of rebellion, the Crown would use the Inquisition to increase repression (trials) in Spain. In a theoretical framework, I show that while the Inquisition would conduct more trials the higher the intensity of the wars fought abroad, it would however decrease its level of repression (trials) if the likelihood of an internal revolt were large enough. This behavior indicates an inverse-U relationship between inquisitorial and war intensity. To test this prediction, I assemble time series data for seven Spanish inquisitorial districts on annual trials of the Inquisition and wars conducted by the Spanish Crown between 1478 and 1808. I show that there is an inverse-U relationship between wars and inquisitorial activity. My results are robust to the inclusion of data on the severity of the weather (droughts) and to adjustments for spillover e.ects from districts other than the main district under analysis. Moreover, using a new database of 35,000 trials of the Inquisition, I show that religious persecution was especially significant during early stages of the Inquisition, while repressive motives better explain its behavior in later periods.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE) in its series CAGE Online Working Paper Series with number 118.
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: CV4 7AL COVENTRY
Phone: +44 (0) 2476 523202
Fax: +44 (0) 2476 523032
Web page: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/research/centres/cage/
More information through EDIRC
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James Robinson, 2005.
"The Rise of Europe: Atlantic Trade, Institutional Change, and Economic Growth,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 546-579, June.
- Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James Robinson, 2002. "The Rise of Europe: Atlantic Trade, Institutional Change and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 9378, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon H. & Robinson, James A., 2003. "The Rise of Europe: Atlantic Trade, Institutioanl Change and Economic Growth," Working papers 4269-02, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
- Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A, 2003. "The Rise of Europe: Atlantic Trade, Institutional Change and Economic Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 3712, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Emily Oster, 2004. "Witchcraft, Weather and Economic Growth in Renaissance Europe," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(1), pages 215-228, Winter.
- De Long, J Bradford & Shleifer, Andrei, 1993.
"Princes and Merchants: European City Growth before the Industrial Revolution,"
Journal of Law and Economics,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(2), pages 671-702, October.
- De Long, J. Bradford & Shleifer, Andrei, 1993. "Princes and Merchants: European City Growth before the Industrial Revolution," Scholarly Articles 3451302, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer, 1993. "Princes and Merchants: European City Growth before the Industrial Revolution," NBER Working Papers 4274, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Carlos Álvarez Nogal [canogal] & Christophe Chamley, 2011. "Debt policy under constraints between Philip II, the Cortes and Genoese bankers," Working Papers in Economic History wp11-06, Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Historia Económica e Instituciones.
- Mauricio Drelichman, 2004.
"All that Glitters: Precious Metals, Rent Seeking and the Decline of Spain,"
- Drelichman, Mauricio, 2005. "All that glitters: Precious metals, rent seeking and the decline of Spain," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 9(03), pages 313-336, December.
- Berger, Helge & Spoerer, Mark, 2001. "Economic Crises And The European Revolutions Of 1848," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 61(02), pages 293-326, June.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jane Snape).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.