Students of Colonial Latin American history know quite well the account of Bartolomé de las Casas, Dominican “protector of the Indians.” In fact, they are likely to know more about the sixteenth century of las Casas than the following two hundred years. For this reason alone, the addition of a translation of a key seventeenth-century source by Juan de Palafox y Mendoza is a welcome addition to our bookshelves.

The volume is handsomely edited and elegantly translated by Nancy Fee, extending the work of her doctoral dissertation on the role of the churchman Palafox. Her 60-page biographical sketch of the man is magnificent reading. Palafox was arguably one of the more influential public figures in New Spain during his century, an influential bishop of Puebla de Los Angeles with considerable impact on the baroque construction of religious edifices and establishment of convents and other institutions. He served in the civil...

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