Streets: Callejon de la Inquisicion (Sevilla, España)

The Callejon de la Inquisicion (Alley of the Inquisition) is a little narrow passage, just north of the Puente de Isabel II in Triana (just off Calle Castilla), that leads down to the Guadalquivir River. This photo was taken at night, as the street lamp cast an orange glow along the wall.  In times past, those unfortunate enough to walk down this alley were usually “heretics” en route to be either locked up or burnt at the stake. “Heretics” included those who were not Catholic. As a result, many christians suffered, including Protestants. For example, in the sixteenth century, a prominent protestant priest in Seville by the name Dr. Constantine Ponce de la Fuente was arrested due his failure to conform to Catholicism. He was lead down this very street to a jail where he died, some speculate as a result of suicide. As if this wasn’t enough for those blood-thirsty Catholics, a few days later his bones were burnt at an auto-de-fe, a festive event where heretics confessed before being burnt alive at the stake (think Joan of Arc). The symbolic act of burning Dr. Constantine’s bones stirred up the audience – especially the children – to sing this chilling refrain:

Viva la fe de Cristo (Long live the faith of Christ)
y la Santa Inquisición (and the Holy Inquisition)
y quemen a Constantino (and burn Constantine)
por malo engañador (for being an evil deceiver)

Callejon de la Inquisicion, Sevilla

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