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Updated: Apr 6

"the fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom..." Dan 7:23


Prophecy follows the repeat & enlarge principle. The prophecy of Daniel 2 is repeated and enlarged upon in Daniel 7, 8 & 11. In Daniel 7 the fourth beast is said to be the fourth kingdom - Daniel 7:23.  Allowing Scripture to interpret itself, the mention of kingdoms here in Daniel 7 can only be referring to their first mention in Daniel chapter 2.


  • The prophetic part of the Book of Daniel commences in chapter 7

  • Daniel 2 is a dream given King Nebuchadnezzar - 4 great kingdoms.

  • Daniel 7,8 & 11 adds details to the Daniel 2 image & complete it.

  • Daniel 2 and 7 are complete prophecies commencing with Babylon.

  • Daniel 8 is the last chapter with symbols - Ram, He-Goat, Little Horn.

  • Daniel 2 starts with Babylon & ends with Papal Rome (Babylon).

  • Daniel 7 commences with Babylon and ends with Papal Rome.

  • Daniel 8 commences with Medo-Persia and ends with Papal Rome.

  • Daniel 11 commences with Medo-Persia & ends with Papal Rome.


"Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image. This great image, whose brightness [was] excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof [was] terrible. This image's head [was] of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay. .... Thou [art] this head of gold. And after thee shall arise another kingdom inferior to thee, and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth. And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all [things]: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise. And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters' clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay."

"Thou [art] this head of gold." Daniel 2:38 - BABYLON is the head of GOLD

"King"and "Kingdom" used interchangeably in prophecy.

Note in Daniel 7:17 "These great beasts, which are four, are four kings, which shall arise out of the earth."

And then note in the following, the beast is said to be a kingdom as well.

Daniel 7:23 "Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces."

  • The four beasts are called four kings in Daniel 7:17

  • The four beasts arise out of the earth - Dan 7:17

  • The fourth beast is said to be the fourth Kingdom in Daniel 7:23

  • The fourth beast is upon the earth - Daniel 7:23

  • A beast is called a "king"

  • A beast is also called a "kingdom"

  • Allowing scripture to interpret the symbolism, "King" is used interchangeably with "Kingdom"

  • Hence, while Daniel refers to King Nebuchanezzar as the head of Gold, it is really referring to the Kingdom of Babylon as the head of Gold.

However, another kingdom was to arise after Babylon


Just as the interpretation predicted, Babylon fell to the Medes & Persians - the second kingdom of Bible Prophecy. The event is outlined in Daniel chapter 5.

Then was the part of the hand sent from him; and this writing was written. And this [is] the writing that was written, MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. This [is] the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it. TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting. PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians. "In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain. And Darius the Median took the kingdom, [being] about threescore and two years old." Daniel 5:24-31


This is described in Daniel Chapter 8:3-7 in the symbolism of the Ram and He-Goat


"Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had [two] horns: and the [two] horns [were] high; but one [was] higher than the other, and the higher came up last. I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither [was there any] that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great. And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat [had] a notable horn between his eyes. And he came to the ram that had [two] horns, which I had seen standing before the river, and ran unto him in the fury of his power. And I saw him come close unto the ram, and he was moved with choler against him, and smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him: and there was none that could deliver the ram out of his hand." Daniel 8:3-7

"Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians." Daniel 5:28


The He-Goat "...smote the ram, and brake his two horns: and there was no power in the ram to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground, and stamped upon him:" "The ram which thou sawest having [two] horns [are] the kings of Media and Persia. And the rough goat [is] the king of Grecia:" Daniel 8:7,20

"The ram which thou sawest having [two] horns [are] the kings of Media and Persia. And the rough goat [is] the king of Grecia: and the great horn that [is] between his eyes [is] the first king. Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power." Dan 8:20-22

Alexander the Great's kingdom was finally divided and scattered toward the four winds of heaven (4 directions of the compass) Dan 8:8, 11:4. The four divisions of Alexander's kingdom are symbolised by the four horns which arose on the he-goat after the great horn was broken.


This is described in Daniel Chapter 8:9 and onwards in the symbolism of the Little horn.


While a little cryptic, Rome, both pagan and papal enters the prophecy in the description of the little horn here in Daniel 8. It is consistent with Daniel CHAPTERS 2,7 and 11. Note the following:

1. Daniel 2 - the fourth kingdom of Iron (Rome) transitions to Iron and Clay feet (Papal Rome)

2. Daniel 7 - fourth beast (Rome) transitions to the little horn (Papal Rome) on the 4th beast.

3. Daniel 8 - the little horn represents Rome in both its pagan and papal phases.

4. Daniel 11: Rome, the King of the North, transitions to Papal Rome in vs 30,31 - same symbol for both - the King of the North


1. Came forth a little horn - Rome came forth from one of the winds of the compass

2, It waxed exceeding great. Rome was greater than Medo-Persia or Grecia

3. It conquered South, East & the pleasant land - Rome conquered Palestine.

4. It waxed great, [even] to the Host of heaven - Rome persecuted God's people.

5. It cast the host & stars to the ground. cf He-Goat casting Ram to the ground.

6. It stamped upon them. Rome destroyed God's people.

7. Yea, He magnified [himself] even to the Prince of the Host. Rome crucified Christ.

8. From him, the DAILY was taken away - from Rome the DAILY was exalted.

9. The place of his sanctuary was cast down - Emperor Constantine gave up Rome.

10. And an host was given him against the daily ....... cf Dan 11:31

11. "and it cast down the truth to the ground;" - Papal Rome cast the truth down

12. "and it practised, and prospered." - Papal Rome is a financial superpower

13. the daily & the transgression of desolation, trods underfoot sanctuary & host

14. Paganism, the DAILY (Pagan Rome) & the transgression of desolation (Papal Rome) destroyed God's people (the host) and the Sanctuary - destroyed in 70AD.

15. "And in the latter time of their kingdom," - latter time of four divisions of Grecia

16. "king of fierce countenance, & understanding dark sentences, shall stand up."

17. Rome followed the Grecian Kingdom.

18. Rome spoke a language (Latin) the Jews did not understand - cf Deut 28:49,50

19. His power shall be mighty vs 24 - Rome described as exceeding great.

20. He shall destroy wonderfully vs 24. Rome destroyed God's people

21. He shall prosper and practise vs 24 - Papal Rome practised and prospered.

22. He shall destroy the mighty and holy people - Both Romes killed Christians.

23. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand;

24. and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many:

25. "he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes;" - Rome is antichrist.

26. "he shall be broken without hand" cf Dan 2:34,35 - Papal Rome will be destroyed.


The Roman Empire followed the Grecian Empire.

The Roman Empire became 'exceeding great' compared to Persia & Grecia

The Roman Empire invaded and conquered the pleasant land - Palestine

Jesus (the Prince of the host) was born in the time of the Roman Empire.

The Roman Empire crucified Christ, the Prince of the host.

The Roman Empire killed God's people - Christians were fed to the lions.

The Roman Empire destroyed Jerusalem and its temple ( Sanctuary)

The Roman Empire transitioned to the Papal Roman Empire of the Popes

The Papal Roman Empire killed Bible believing Christians - inquisition etc

Papal Rome 'destroyed' the sanctuary, substituting its own priestly system

The Papal Roman Empire is against Christ or is Antichrist

The Papal Roman Empire will be destroyed.

Hence if the fourth beast is the fourth kingdom, then the third, second and first beasts are symbols of the third, second and first kingdoms of the Daniel 2 image.

The fourth kingdom of Daniel 2 was Pagan ROME, hence the fourth beast of Daniel 7 is symbolic of ROME. However, Rome, the legs of Iron in Daniel 2 transitioned to the feet of Iron & clay which is symbolic of Papal ROME, the state (iron monarchy of Rome) mixed with religion, the latter represented by the CLAY.

We identified the iron & clay as the union of church & state in the form of Papal Rome and its long succession of Popes. Point is if the fourth beast is the fourth kingdom, then somewhere in the fourth beast must lie the clue to the religio-political system of Papal ROME (IRON & CLAY) as found in the Daniel chapter 2 image.

Daniel chapter 7 identifies the "IRON & CLAY" of Daniel 2 in the fourth beast with added details identifying Papal Rome as the little horn of Daniel chapter 7.

Daniel chapter 2 contains four kingdoms.

​Daniel chapter 7 contains four kingdoms.

In Daniel chapter 2 the fourth kingdom is divided.

​In Daniel chapter 7 the fourth kingdom is divided.

In Daniel chapter 2 is the image of a man

​In Daniel chapter 7 the little horn has the eyes of a man.

In Daniel chapter 2 the image is destroyed after the division of the 4th kingdom.

In Daniel chapter 7 the 4th beast is destroyed after the division into the ten horns.

In Daniel chapter 2 the kingdom of God is set up at the end.

In Daniel chapter 7 the kingdom of God is set up at the end.

Daniel 2 deals largely with political changes.  The four beasts in Daniel 7 parallel the four metals in the image of Daniel 2 and represent the same four kingdoms:

  1. Babylon

  2. Medo Persia

  3. Grecia

  4. Rome.

In Daniel 7 the focus of attention moves toward the last period of earth’s history. The judgment is described as occurring some time before the fourth beast is destroyed. 

Daniel 7, like the rest of the book, was given to show the people of God their part in the great controversy between Christ & Satan, the efforts of Satan to destroy them, through to their final victory are revealed.

"the fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom..." Daniel 7:23

OVERVIEW Using four beasts, God foretells the rise and fall of the four great successive kingdoms which have especially affected Godʼs people:

Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece & Rome. Romeʼs division into the nations of Europe is represented by the ten horns on the fourth beast but Rome continues on as it transitions to Papal Rome which arises in Europe after the ten horns have arisen. Rome persecutes God's faithful and then the judgment begins in Heaven. Christ receives His kingdom and the beast is then destroyed.

Verses 1-7

Daniel sees four carnivorous beasts rise out of the sea as the four winds blow. These four beasts are said to represent four kingdoms which, like all predators, exist by overpowering others (v 23). The waters from which they rise represent a populated area (Rev 17:15; Isa 57:20; 60:5). The winds represent war and strife by which kingdoms come to power (Jer 49:36-37; 51:2-3). This vision parallels the vision of Daniel chapter 2.

The four beasts parallel the four kingdoms of the Daniel 2 image. Daniel told King Nebuchadnezzar that three other kingdoms would arise after Babylon. Daniel 7 reiterates this in verse 23: "the fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom..." Hence the third beast would be the third kingdom of the image, the second beast the second kingdom etc.

THE FOUR BEASTS The four beasts represent Babylon, Medo- Persia, Greece and Rome.


7:3 And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another.

7:4 The first was like a lion, and had eagle's wings: I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked, and it was lifted up from the earth, and made stand upon the feet as a man, and a man's heart was given to it.

- Beasts are a symbol of kingdoms, nations, powers - see verse 23

- Sea / waters represent peoples, nations - Rev 17:15, Isaiah 57:20, 60:5

- Diverse beasts like the different metals of the Daniel 2 image

- Wings symbol of speed in conquering (Eze 17:3, 12; Lam 4:19; Hab 1:6-8). - Wings plucked - no longer swift to conquer.

- Manʼs heart - loss of lion-like qualities & desperate wickedness. (Jer 17:9).


7:5 And behold another beast, a second, like to a bear, and it raised up itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between the teeth of it: and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh.

Medo-Persia conquered Babylon (Daniel 5:28). One side higher - the Persian side of the coalition was dominant. cf the two horn of the Ram in Daniel 8:3 where one of the horns was higher.

Three ribs in its mouth - Medo-Persiaʼs three main conquests: Lydia 547BC; Babylon 539BC; Egypt 525BC - see Daniel 8:4 as the Ram conquers westward, Northward and southward so that no beast (kingdom) might stand before it. The three ribs in the bears mouth represent those conquests.


7:6 After this I beheld, and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it.

Greece, under Alexander the Great, conquered Medo-Persia and extended its empire from Egypt to India in just 3 years! Four wings - Wings, like the leopard, symbolize speed. (Hab 1:6-8). Speed of conquest. cf the he-goat of Daniel 8:5 was moving so fast that its feet did not touch the ground.

The leopard itself can move with great speed but its natural swiftness was inadequate to describe the amazing speed of Alexanders’s conquest. There is no other example in ancient times of such rapid conquest over such vast distances.

Grecia, with leopard like swifness, conquered all before it. Both the leopard and the wings show that this kingdom would move with great speed (cf. Hab 1:8).

“In this short space of 8 years Alexander had annexed an area of little less than 2 million square miles...[consider] The amazing rapidity of his conquests.” The Growth of European Civilization, A.E.R. Boak, p 59-60

Four heads - symbolise the Four Grecian divisions, which followed the death of Alexander the Great. They were founded by his generals:

Lysimachus, Ptolemy, Seleucus and Cassander.


7:7 After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and itwasdiverse from all the beasts thatwerebefore it; and it had ten horns.

Rome conquered the Grecian divisions. Ten Horns - Invading barbarians tribes from northern Europe divided the Empire into ten kingdoms by 476AD. They are represented by the 10 horns on the fourth beast. Those kingdoms which survived make up the nations of Europe today, and are still distinctly politically divided. In their days Christ will return and set up His kingdom. See on Daniel 2:40-44.

The barbarian tribes which became the ten kingdoms of Europe are:

1. Alemanni - Germany 2. Franks - France 3. Burgundians - Swiss 4. Suevi - Portugal 5. Vandals - Extinct 6. Visigoths - Spain 7. Anglo-Saxons - English 8. Ostrogoths - Extinct 9. Lombards - Italy 10. Heruli - Extinct

See Edward Gibbon, "The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire." There were other tribes but the list above are the first ten to become kingdoms in the former territory of the Western Roman Empire.


7:8 I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.


Biblical Clues - cf Feet of Iron & Clay of Daniel chapter 2


Horns symbolise kingdoms, see Daniel 8:8, 20-22. The Ram has two horns symbolic of the Medes & Persians. The He-Goat has four horns. Alexander's kingdom was divided among his four generals. The little Horn is a kingdom separate from the previous 10 kingdoms (horns). King & kingdom are used interchangeably (see Dan 2:38-39; Dan 7:17, 23). Papal Rome is a kingdom as well as a church. See any Encyclopaedia. Like Christ, the Pope is a king / priest. (Gen 14:18; Heb 7).


It arises among the 10 horns of the fourth beast. It arose among the ten nations into which the fourth beast was divided. It arose in Europe “among” the 10 horns into which the Roman Empire divided (Dan 7:8) - The Papacy arose in Rome Italy among the nations of Europe. It arose “after” (v 24) the 10 horns had arisen. i.e. after A.D.476 - The Papacy came to full power in A.D.538. It grew from the fourth beast, the Roman Empire - The Papacy is commonly known as the ROMAN Catholic Church.

“Whatever elements the barbarians and Arians left...[came] under the protection of the bishop of Rome, who was the chief person there after the empireʼs disappearance. The Roman church in this way privily PUSHED ITSELF into the place of the Ro- man World-Empire, of which it is the actual continuation.” A. Harnack, What is Christianity? p 269-270.

“Out of the ruins of political Rome, AROSE the great moral Empire in the ʻgiant formʼ of the Roman Church. “ A. C. Flick. The Rise of the Mediaeval Church, 1909, p 150.


Papal Rome subdued three of the 10 horns (kingdoms) (verses 8, 20, 24). Of the 10 kingdoms which arose from the Roman Empire the Heruli, Vandals and Ostrogoths adopted the Arian faith and refused to acknowledge the supremacy of the Roman Church. Historians record that at the instigation of the Bishop of Rome (Pope), the Heruli in AD493, the Vandals in AD533, and the Ostrogoths in AD538 were destroyed.

As ten kingdoms have already arisen from the territory of the Roman Empire, and as three of those kingdoms have already been “plucked up,” clearly the Little Horn responsible for the ʻpluckingʼ ALREADY EXISTS!

4. THE LITTLE HORN HAS A "MAN" AT IT'S HEAD WITH MAN'S EYES The papa (father) or Pope, is the head of Papal Rome. He claims to be able to forgive sins against God, which only God can do (See Mark 2:7; Matt 23:9). For mere men to do this is blasphemous (Mark 2:7). Only God can forgive sins committed against Him. The Papacy judges men by the outward appearance according to human understanding. “The eyes of man” judge the outward appearance, (1Sam 16:7) and are selfish.


The little horn speaks "great things", "great words against the most high" - verses 8, 20, 25. The Papacy blasphemes against God by claiming to be able to forgive sins - The Confessional. (cf. 1Tim 2:5). The Bible defines blasphemy as claiming to be God and or claiming to be able to forgive sin (John 10:32-33; Mark 2:7). Every Roman Catholic Confessional is a fulfillment of this aspect of the Little Horn.


  1. MATTHEW 9:2,3 "And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee. And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth."

  2. JOHN 10:33 "The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God."

Papal Rome claims to be able to forgive sin, hence THE CONFESSIONAL. This one characteristic is a very strong identifying mark that the little horn is PAPAL ROME. The Pope is also said to be the Vicar of Jesus Christ.

“The Pope is not only the representative of Jesus Christ, but he is Jesus Christ Himself, hidden under veil of the flesh.” The Catholic National, July, 1895.

“The pope is crowned with a triple crown as king of heaven, and earth, and purgatory.” Ferraris' Promptta Bibliotheca, Vol. VI, p 26, article "Papa."

“What only God can do by his omnipotence, the priest can also do...Indeed it is not too much to say that in view of the sublimity of their office the priests are so many Gods.” Dignity and Duties of the Priest, Alphonsus De Liguori, p35.

“Does the Priest truly remit [forgive] sins, or does he only declare they are remitted? The priest does really and truly remit the sin in virtue of the power given him by Christ.” Joseph Deharbe, S.J., A Complete Catechism of the Catholic Religion, p275.

"All the names which in the Scriptures are applied to Christ, by virtue of which it is established that he is over the church, all the same names are applied to the pope." Robert Bellarmine, On the Authroity of the Councils, Chap 17 1628 ed., vol 1, p. 266

"We hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty" Pope Leo XIII, Encyclical Letter of June 20, 1894

“The Pope is supreme judge of the law of the land...He is the viceregent of Christ, and is not only a priest forever, but is King of kings and Lord of lords.” La Civilta Cattolica, March 18, 1871.

“The Pope is of so great authority and power that he can modify, explain, or interpret even Divine laws...THE POPE CAN MODIFY DIVINE LAW, since his power is not of man, but of God, and he acts in the place of God upon earth.” Lucius Ferraris, “Papa,” art. 2, in Prompta Bibliotheca

"The pope has power to change times, to abrogate [change] laws, and to dispense [do away] with all things, even the precepts of Christ."Decretal, De Translantic Episcop]


The Little horn is diverse (different) from the other horns - verse 24

Papal Rome is a union of Church AND State.


The little Horn arose AFTER the first ten horns had appeared i.e. after the Roman Empire had divided into the nations of Europe - verse 24. Papal Rome rose to power “after” AD476 when the 10th kingdom arose. Papal Rome came to full power in AD538.


Wore out the saints i.e. God's people - verse 25. The Little horn, Papal Rome, persecuted Christians. Papal Rome slew millions throughout the Dark Ages.

"The Catholic church has persecuted. Only a tyro [beginner] in church history will deny that...One hundred and fifty years after Constantine the Donatists were persecuted, and sometimes put to death...Protestants were persecuted in France and Spain with the full approval of the church authorities. We have always defended the persecution of the Hugenots, and the Spanish Inquisition. Wherever and whenever there is honest Catholicity, there will be a clear distinction drawn between truth and error, and Catholicity and all forms of heresy. When she thinks it good to use physical force, she will use it." A Roman Catholic publication, The Western Watchman, of St Louis, Dec. 24, 1908.

“Torture was little used from the 9th to 12th centuries, but with the revival of Roman law the process was re-established in the 12th century...In 1252 [Pope] Innocent IV sanctioned the infliction of torture by the civil authorities upon heretics, and torture came to have a recognized place in the procedures of the inquisitorial courts.” New Catholic Encyclopaedia, art. Torture.

"Making every allowance required by an historian and permitted to a Christian, we must rank the Inquisition, along with the wars and persecutions of our time, as among the darkest blots on the history of mankind, revealing a ferocity unknown in any beast." -- The Story of Civilization, volume 4, page 784.

"For professing faith contrary to the teaching of the church of Rome, history records the matyrdom of more than 100 million people." Brief Bible Readings, p16.

“That the Church of Rome has shed more innocent blood than any other institution that has ever existed among mankind, will be questioned by no Protestant who has a competent knowledge of history.” History of the Rise and Influence of the Spirit of Rationalism in Europe, reprint, W.E.H. Lecky, 1955, Vol. 2, p40.

“The noon of the papacy was the midnight of the world.” The History of Protestantism, J.A. Wylie, Vol 1, chap 4.

Llorente, the historian of the Inquisition supplies the following record of those burned in Spain alone: “The horrid conduct of this holy office weakened the power and diminished the population of Spain, by arresting the progress of the arts, sciences, industry and commerce, and by compelling multitudes of families to abandon the kingdom; by instigating the expulsion of the Jews and the Moors, and by immolating on its flaming piles more than three hundred thousand victims.” Juan Antonio Llorente [secretary of the Inquisition in Spain], The History of the Spanish Inquisition, p5

Walter M. Montano, a former Catholic priest, asserts in his book, Behind the Purple Curtain, that it has been estimated that fifty million people died during the twelves hundred years of the Dark Ages. See Walter M. Montano, Behind the Purple Curtain, p91

A. Hyatt Verrill, in his book, The Inquisition, relates some of the atrocities instigated by the Church in the Netherlands. He stated thatthe reign of terror in the Netherlands was beyond words to describe. King Philip himself boasted that the Inquisition in his area was “much more pitiless than that in Spain.”

Tens of thousands were tortured or burned during the first two years of Philips tenure as king. But it would not be until the coming of the cruel Duke of Alva in 1567 that cruelties became indescribable. In less than three months after his coming to power, Alva caused eighteen hundred people to be burned alive. On one gala occasion five hundred were burned en masse. At the close of Holy Week in one year eight hundred heretics were slain. In the city of Antwerp eight thousand lives were taken by the Catholic Church at one time. Upon his departure from the Netherlands, Alva boasted that more than eighteen thousand people had died at his order. See Verrill, The Inquisition, p236.