chapter  10
16 Pages

MarinadeSaavedra:ADevoutLaywomanona Confessional Frontier (Zamora, 1558–1559)

ByDoris Moreno Martínez

Much has been written about the so-called Lutheran group of sixteenth-century Valladolid. In the nineteenth century, writing from very diverse ideological positions, Juan Antonio Llorente, Adolfo de Castro, Benjamin W. Wiffen, Luis Usoz y Río, Marcelino Menéndez Pelayo, and Ernst H.J. Schaeffer assembled the essential documentation regarding the men and women who were tried by the Spanish Inquisition between 1558 and 1561. None questioned their Protestant identity.1 In the twentieth century, in his extraordinary study of the reception of Erasmus in sixteenth-century Spain, Marcel Bataillon called this identification into question: Protestantism came late to Spain, he claimed, and failed to take root because Erasmism had previously fulfilled the desires for spiritual renovation in broad sectors of Spanish society. According to the French Hispanist, the practices of the so-called Lutheran groups of Castile were better explained in the context of the autochthonous alumbrado movement than as an authentic reformist cult. At any rate, it was a question of diluted, low-intensity “protestantism,” not capitalized and suitably enclosed in quotation marks.2