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José Arlegui (c. 1686-1750) was a Spanish Franciscan theologian of the eighteenth century, from Biscay, who wrote on theological subjects, some of them related to the ethnology of Mexico.


He was first attached to the Franciscan province of Cantabria, then transferred to Zacatecas in Mexico.


His most important work was the Cronica de Zacatecas, which was published in 1737. He gives an account of the missions in his province, including many reports on the native Americans of Zacatecas. This is a major primary source for them, who are otherwise hardly touched by contemporary published documents, and of the first attempts to convert them to Christianity.


  • Cronica de la Provincia de Zacatecas, 1737. Very rare. *Beristain de Souza, Biblioteca Hispano-Americana setentrional (Mexico, 1816), I;
  • Casual mention also in the Documentos para la Historia de Mexico, first and second series.

This article incorporates text from the entry Fray José Arlegui in the public-domain Catholic Encyclopedia of 1913.


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