Santos in Oaxaca's Ancient Churches

A study of santos in 16th-century and other churches in Oaxaca, Mexico


By Claire and Richard Stracke
Funded by a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation.

In San Miguel Ejutla:
Christ: Ecce Homo
Christ Mocked in the Pretorium
Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Our Lady of Sorrows
Our Lady of Sorrows (Soledad)
Our Lady of the Assumption
St. Francis of Assisi
St. John the Evangelist
St. Mary Magdalene
Unidentified Dominican Saint
Unidentified Franciscan Saint (1)
Unidentified Franciscan Saint (2)
Virgin Mary in a coffin

Other santos not photographed

Unidentified Franciscan Saint

Unidentified Franciscan Saint:
The first joints of the index finger and pinkie are gone from the right hand. The left hand lacks the first joints of all fingers. The halo is new and silvered. The pattern of the polychrome is of the four feathers or white-oak leaves used in Tlacolula for the St. John and Our Lady of Sorrows, but the work is not as elegant. In this case, the colors are brown and gold. The statue is uninspiring, the face too pat – glossy and unrealistic. The folds of the robes are perfunctory and are drawn back awkwardly to reveal the toes. The statue stands on a simple wooden slab, slightly rounded to support the splayed feet.

Basis for Identification: Halo, tonsure, brown habit and cord with three knots, floor-length cross in left hand.

Site: Church of San Miguel Ejutla.

Location: On an altar to Our Lady of Guadalupe along the north wall of the narthex, right of the Virgin (see note).

Media and construction: Polychrome.

Size: About 3 feet (90 cm.)

Next: On the main altar, a statue of another Franciscan saint

Previous santo

Introduction to San Miguel Ejutla

Santos Home Page

Note: On this site, references to the cardinal directions always assume that the main altar is at the east end of the church, the narthex or entry area at the west end, and the two walls of the nave on the north and south. (The nave is the long central section.) Actual orientations may differ.

The photo shown here is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. You are free to share or remix it on two conditions: first, that you attribute it to the photographers, Claire and Richard Stracke, without implying any approval of your work on their part; second, that if you alter, transform, or build upon this photo, you may distribute the resulting work only under the same or similar license to this one.