Article published in:New Insights in the History of Interpreting
Edited by Kayoko Takeda and Jesús Baigorri-Jalón
[Benjamins Translation Library 122] 2016
► pp. 47–74
Interpreting for the Inquisition
One of the singularities of the Spanish Inquisition was its multilingualism. This chapter looks at mediation in this institution, which carried out its activities throughout practically the whole of the Spanish Empire over three and a half centuries (1478–1834). After the initial delimitation of the historical, geographical and social areas in which it was active, the most common situations in which interpreters were needed are presented, together with the most relevant aspects of their work, including references to the regulations that governed their interventions. Although this is a first approach to this area of the history of linguistic mediation, we can conclude that the Inquisition involved a considerable amount of interpreting, most of which was of a legal nature.
Keywords: Spanish Inquisition, multilingualism, appointment of interpreters, court interpreting
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Published online: 10 March 2016