A PLACE CALLED “THE LITTLE HELL”

The Holy Office granted determined licenses to some people to read forbidden books, academies or convents that required it. The solicitants must have proved previously that such reading was necessary for a good performance of its functions. The license was only to have access to forbidden titles since they had been considered forbidden even for those who had license to read those books and whose reading was completely prohibited.

The convents kept the forbidden books in a separate place, which they called “The Little Hell”. If someone was caught taking books out of the little hell, they would declare him guilty and they would be sent to the authorities of the Inquisition. Invariably, the poor persons had the excommunication waiting for them and a fine of two hundred ducats.

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