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 Tlacolula:

Christ: Ecce Homo
Christ in a coffin
Christ in the pretorium (Pensive Christ)
Crucifix 1
Crucifix 2
Our Lady of Sorrows
Our Lady of the Assumption
Palm Sunday Christ
St. Anthony of Padua
St. John the Evangelist
St. Peter of Verona (Peter Martyr)

Other santos not photographed

St. Anthony of Padua

Saint Anthony of Padua:
The face has a five o'clock shadow. Instead of the Franciscan brown habit and white cord common in representations of this saint, the figure wears red velvet and the gold cord is tasseled. The hands and head have been made separately from the body, which is of wood painted blue. The child is a separate figure, also of wood covered in gesso. It is dressed in velvet and sits on a velvet pillow.

Local Name: San Antoñito.

Basis for Identification: Tonsure, Christ Child upon left hand, called San Antoñito by Sr. Jescas.

Site: Church of the Assumption, Tlacolula.

Location: On a shelf on the south wall of the west transept of the Chapel (see note).

Media and construction: Wood, gesso, paint, fabric garments. Eyes: glass, with eyelashes.

Size: 5 feet 9 inches (175 cm.)

Comparable santos in Oaxaca: Coixtlahuaca, Etla, Huitzo, Mitla, Tamazulapan, Teitipac, Teposcolula.

External Links:
Wikimedia Commons: Statues of Saint Anthony of Padua in México
Catholic Encyclopedia: St. Anthony of Padua
Wikipedia: Anthony of Padua
Christian Iconography: Saint Anthony of Padua

Next: Also in the west transept, a statue of Christ in the pretorium

Previous santo

Introduction to Tlacolula

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.) In the case of the Chapel of the Lord of Tlacolula, which is at right angles to the south wall of the church, the altar is thus at the south end and the transept (the two wings that give the building the shape of a cross) comprises an east and west 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.