[Flower logo of the Medieval History Course]Inquisition

Born in Castile in 1170, Dominic founded the order of Preaching Friars, also called the Dominican order, which was confirmed in 1216. He was instrumental in the Inquisition's heresy trial, which generally culminated in the ceremony and public execution known as atto-da-fe' ("act of faith").

Dominic is shown enthroned and holding lilies, symbols of the Virgin Mary. At the bottom right, two members of the Albigensian sect, a dualist heresy in the south of France, wear conial caps and tunics that identify them as the accused (a customary pre-trial ignominy). They are led by a rope around the neck, held by a surprisingly indifferent jailer. Two others, who have already been condemned, are being burned at the stake.

Padro Berrugete.Saint Dominic Presiding over an Atto-da-fe'. c.1475. Oil on wood. 60 5/8 X 36 1/4"(154 X 92cm). Prad Museum, Madrid.