Forbidden New Testament
[Spanish New Testament. Pérez de Pineda Version].
El testamento nuevo de nuestro señor y salvador Iesu Christo. Nueva y fielmente traduzido del original Griego en romance Castellano.
“Venecia: Juan Philadelpho” [Geneva: Jean Crespin], 1556. (AFR8866)
As in pre-Reformation England, vernacular versions of the Bible were prohibited in sixteenth-century Spain for fear that such translations would give rise to unauthorized interpretations. Although the Inquisition effectively prevented Spanish printers from producing vernacular Bibles, printers in Protestant countries succeeded in making Spanish Bibles available to readers abroad. In addition, some copies were smuggled into Spain.
As the Inquisition could pursue Protestant agitators outside of Spain, the Swiss publisher of this Spanish New Testament concealed his identity by using the pseudonym “Juan Philadelpho” and claiming Venice as the place of publication. The small size of the New Testament allowed copies to be transported secretly by smugglers such as Julianillo Hernández, who carried wine casks filled with copies into Seville. Nevertheless, the Inquisition soon captured and executed Hernández, burned an effigy of the translator Juan Pérez de Pineda (c. 1500–1567), and destroyed all confiscated copies of the book.