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 Pedro y San Pablo Etla:

Christ at the pillar
Christ: Ecce Homo
Christ fallen under the cross
Christ in the pretorium
Our Lady of Mount Carmel
St. Anthony of Padua
St. Luke
St. Paul
St. Peter the Apostle
St. Peter of Verona (Peter Martyr)
Soledad group
Unidentified saint (1)
Unidentified saint (2)
Unidentified saint (3)
Virgin Mary

Ecce Homo

Ecce Homo:
Beneath the wig, the head is bald and painted. The figure has movable arms. The cross is about 2/3 the height of the figure and is made of green dowels capped with brass.

Local Name: Jesus el Nazareño

Basis for Identification: This is the iconographic type that in this site we usually refer to as "Christ in the purple cloak," i.e., Christ as he stood when Pilate said "Behold the Man" ("Ecce Homo" in Latin). This time the figure has been garbed in white, but in every other way it is the same type: Standing, bloodied, wearing a crown of thorns.

Other characteristics: A cross leaning against the wall to the left.

Site: Church of San Pedro y San Pablo Etla.

Location: A chapel off the entry to the south transept (see note).

Media and construction: Wood, gesso, paint. Eyes: glass. Teeth. Hair: wig.

Size: Life size.

Comparable santos in Oaxaca: Ejutla, Etla (in the Soldedad Group), Mitla, Santa Ana del Valle, Tamazulapan, Teitipac1, Teitipac2, Teitipac3, Teotitlán, Teposcolula, Tilantongo, Tlacolula, Xoxocotlán.

External Links:
The episode is in John 19:1-5.
Wikimedia Commons: Statues of Ecce Homo.

Next: In the 3rd bay of the south wall of the nave, a statue of the Virgin Mary

Previous santo

Introduction to San Pedro y San Pablo Etla

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. Etla's church, like many others, has a pair of wings that give the building a cross-like shape; together they form the "transept."

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.