Excellent piece by the late/great Solange Hertz
on Columbus is seen here: https://www.tumblarhouse.com/blogs/news/discovering-columbus
In it she makes reference to the work of William Thomas Walsh. Below is a an excerpt from her work.
The political situation became so unstable that Isabella reluctantly decided on the expulsion of all Jews who would not be baptized as the only realistic means of keeping the peace and protecting the Jews themselves from massacre. She decreed the death penalty for anyone harming them in person or property, and was known to extend the date of their departure wherever special circumstances warranted. There is little doubt about where Columbus
stood in the matter, for a marginal note in his own hand to a prophecy of Esdras which he believed pertained to America, he wrote that only “reprobate Jews” would not accept the prophecy, whereas “it has been accepted by the innumerable ones who have believed in the Gospels. Israel has thus been split into two branches.” Whatever his racial antecedents, Columbus was unquestionably a Catholic.
In opting for deportation, Spain was actually far behind other Christian nations. Jews had been expelled from England in 1290, a full 200 years before; France had expelled them in 1306, and Germany in 1348. The first Inquisition was not established in Spain, but very much earlier, in 1233 in France, whose example was eventually followed not only by Catholic countries, but Protestant ones as well. Like the others, the Inquisition for which Isabella petitioned Rome had jurisdiction only over Catholics. It was never directed against Jews as such, for unless these declared themselves Catholic, the tribunal had no authority to try them. Professed Mohammedans were equally exempt.
Punishment was meted out only to those found guilty of professing the Faith falsely, and who need never have done so. Even so, actual executions were relatively few. In Isabella of Spain, the Last Crusader
, William Thomas Walsh
remarks in Chapter 19,
In the long run the Spanish Inquisition proved to be a life-saving organism, in the sense that it averted more deaths than it caused. Not only was Spain free from the terrible religious wars that cost hundreds of thousands of lives in countries where Protestantism obtained a foothold, but she escaped almost completely the terrors of witch burning, which claimed 100,000 victims in Germany and 30,000 in Great Britain.
Whatever his background, Columbus the man has yet to be discovered, for after five centuries what is known about him still exceeds anything that is known for certain. Posterity does not even know what he looked like.