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The Inquisition And Eighteenth-Century Portugal: The Case Of Antônio José Da Silva

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Chapter Summary

This chapter frames Antônio José da Silva inquisitorial trials and plays in a broad imperial context involving Portugal, England, Spain and other Western European nations. It analysis of the discourse of letrados of Jewish origin, especially given that Antônio José da Silva was the last New Christian from Brazil executed by the Portuguese Inquisition. The study of his trial proceedings and plays offers insights into the motives that led the modern Inquisition to persecute New Christians. Antônio José’s success as a playwright comes from an explanation by Francisco Luiz Ameno, a reputable editor who published in 1744 a collection of comic plays that had been performed in Lisbon in previous decades. Antônio José da Silva used his writings to express his feelings regarding the inequities of the sociopolitical system in which he lived.

Keywords: Antônio José da Silva; letrados; Portuguese Inquisition



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