6 Little-Known Historical Facts That Can Surprise Even ’A’ Students

4. The Spanish Inqusition issued a death sentence to all of the residents of the Netherlands.

6 Little-Known Historical Facts That Can Surprise Even ’A’ Students

On February 16, 1568, the Spanish Inquisition issued a death sentence to all of the residents of the Netherlands by the decree of Philip II. The Spanish Inquisition was established in this country in 1522 by Charles V. The majority of the population of the Netherlands professed Protestantism, against which the Inquisition was fighting. Moreover, the politics of Philip II poured added fuel to the fire as he was trying to limit the rights of the local aristocracy and insisted on introducing a Spanish tax for selling any goods.

In response to all of the complaints and the requests of the population of the Netherlands, the king only toughened the pressure of the Inquisition. Taxes, persecutions of Protestants, and the tyrannical policy of Philip II resulted in a rebellion that was started by the aristocracy in 1567. The King of Spain sent his best warlord, Fernando Álvarez de Toledo, to suppress the rebellion and his methods resulted in the execution of 1,800 aristocrats. All these events became the reason for issuing an edict about executing all the inhabitants of the Netherlands for heresy.

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