chapter  5
31 Pages

Printing and Reading Popular Religious Texts in Sixteenth-Century Spain

BySara T. Nalle

This chapter begins with fragmentary evidence which describes the activities of distributors: inventories from sixteenth-century printers and booksellers. It provides Blanco Sanchez, A. adventures with the Inquisition or even to explain his ideas in their full form. Sanchez's heterodox reading of his innocent-looking book of hours, however, provides people with a textbook case of the danger posed by any form of scripture reaching the lower classes. The chapter attempts to link a largely devalued literature to its cultural and religious milieu and place it within a certain economic framework. It suggests how scholars may begin to evaluate the market for religious books, and to providing a case study of a lower class reader whose reading of seemingly innocent materials led to quite heretical results. The chapter describes a world of books and readers which was considerably beneath the notice of the likes of Francisco de Osuna and Teresa de Avila: the work-a-day printed works and readers of popular Catholicism.