Thursday, August 14, 2008

Q and A - Can Ricardo Get Married?

Rehearsals for Dog in a Manger have begun and I've decided to use the blog as a spot for answering actor questions, like this one that came up in the workshop.

QUESTION – If you make Diana's suitor, Ricardo, an Inquisitor, is he still allowed to marry?

ANSWER – Yes. The Spanish Inquisition accepted laymen as well as clergy into their ranks. Ricardo need not be a priest to reach the rank of inquisitor.

Historian Henry Kamen writes:

"Contrary to the image – still widely current – of inquisitors as small-minded clerics and theologians fanatically dedicated to the extirpation of heresy, it must be stressed that, in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries at least, the inquisitors were an elite bureaucracy. Because the Inquisition was a court, its administrators had to be trained lawyers…. By the same token, inquisitors did not have to be clergy and could be laymen. All this shows that the inquisitors were in principle a bureaucracy not of the Church but of the State: they received their training in the same institutions that contributed personnel to the councils of state, corregidorships and high courts…. [For many] service in the Inquisition was merely a stepping stone to a further career."

(Inquisition and society in Spain in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, Bloomington, Indiana University Press, 1985)

Paul G. Miller
Season Dramaturge

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