Cayetano Ripoll

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Cayetano Ripoll (allegedly from Solsona 1778 – Valencia 26 July 1826) was a schoolmaster in Valencia, Spain, who was executed for allegedly teaching deist principles.[1][2] Ripoll was a soldier in the Spanish army during the Peninsular War (1807–1814). He was captured by French forces and was a prisoner of war. While being held by the French he was taken to France and there he became aware of deism. He soon became a deist.[3]

Upon returning to Spain, he used his position as a school master to teach others about deism. There he was soon accused by the Spanish Inquisition of being a deist and of teaching his students about deism. He was later arrested for heresy and held in jail for close to two years. The clergymen of the Spanish Inquisition demanded Ripoll be burned at the stake for his heresy, however, the civil authorities chose to hang him instead.

Allegedly, the Church authorities, upset that Ripoll had not been burned at the stake, placed his body into a barrel, painted flames on the barrel and buried it in unconsecrated ground. Other reports state that the Church authorities placed his body into a barrel and burned the barrel, throwing the ashes into a river.[3] Ripoll is recorded as being the last known person to have been executed under sentence from a Church authority for having committed the act of heresy.

Ripoll's famous last words were, "I die reconciled to God and to man."[4][5]


  1. ^ Anderson, James Maxwell (2002). Daily life during the Spanish Inquisition (illustrated ed.). Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 83. ISBN 0-313-31667-8. Retrieved 2009-03-03. 
  2. ^ "Reflections". 2010. Retrieved 2010-04-28.  English translation of an account of Ripoll's trial and execution.
  3. ^ a b Johnson, Bob. "Martyr For Deism: Cayetano Ripoll". Retrieved 2012-11-23. 
  4. ^ Schaff, Philip; Schaff, David Schley (1910). "History of the Christian Church". C. Scribner's sons. p. 552. Retrieved 2009-03-03. 
  5. ^ MacNevin, Suzanne (2010). "The Spanish Inquisition: Killing Non-Christians for the Mother Church". Retrieved 2010-04-28.  Discussion of the Spanish Inquisition.