The history of Frey Tómas de Torquemada is the history of the establishment of the Modern Inquisition. It is not so much the history of a man as of an abstract genius presiding over a gigantic and cruel engine of its own perfecting. Of this engine we may examine for ourselves to-day the details of the complex machinery. Through the records that survive we may observe its cold, smooth action, and trace in this the awful intelligence of its architect. But of that architect himself we are permitted to catch no more than an occasional and fleeting glimpse. It is only in the rarest and briefest moments that he stands clearly before us, revealed as a man of flesh and blood. We see him, now fervidly urging a reluctant queen to do her duty by her God and unsheathe the sword of persecution, now harshly threatening his sovereigns with the wrath of Heaven when they are in danger of relenting in the wielding of that same sword. But in the main he must be studied, not in his actions, but in his enactments—the emanations of his relentless spirit. In these he is to be seen devoutly compassing evil in the perfervid quest of good.