The remains of more than four thousand human beings were discovered last week ( 7 July) in the walled-up tower of a church in southwest Spain.
The remains of more than four thousand human beings were discovered last week ( 7 July) in the walled-up tower of a church in southwest Spain. The church is in the town of llerena near Badojoz, which was a major tribunal in Spain during the infamous Inquisition.
SYNOPSIS: The our Lady of Granada church was built in the sixteenth century, but the tower could have predated it. The remains were found as the wall of an old staircase leading to the tower,caved in during repair works. Among the skeletons were mummified bodies.
The stairway to the tower had been walled-up about a century after the church was built.
Speculation suggests that the bodies could have been victims of one of the great purges of the Spanish Inquisition. the way in which the bodies were twisted and deformed indicates that they may have died in some medieval form of torture.
Anthropologists of Madrid and Barcelona Universities said that they cannot yet be sure about how the bodies came to be closed in the tower. But the fact that the town was a major tribunal for the Inquisitors gives strong credibility to the theory that they might be victims of its purges.
Mr. Josep Pons Rosell, an anthropologist of the University of Barcelona said however that the bodies could have been buried over a period of four or five centuries. The present Palace of Justice is built on the site of the old headquarters of the Inquisition. The bodies are going to the University of Barcelona for study.