Testimonio de las Ordenanzas Formadas para el mas Floreciente Regimen y Gobierno de los Capellanes del Hospital

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Author: Jose Rodriguez del Toro

Year: 1776

Publisher: Manuscript

Place: Mexico City


12 leaves, including hand written title with most leaves written on the recto and verso. Folio (12 1/4" x 8 1/2") loose sheets  in manuscript.  Protected in handcrafted enclosure. First leave on sealed paper. 

Ordinance for the chaplains at the Royal Hospital for Indians in Mexico City. A compilation of twenty eight rules expected to be followed by the chaplains at the Hospital Real y General de los Indios de Mexico (Royal and General Hospital for the Indians of Mexico City). Established in 1553 in response to the horrifying epidemics that regularly consumed thousands of live in colonial Mexico, the Royal Indian Hospital was still tending to indigenous patients in the late eighteen century. The hospitals four chaplains were intended to rotate in shifts, so at any given time two would be on duty to administer sacraments and religious services to the sick and dying. The two chaplains not on active service were nonetheless expected to be on call, and were not permitted to take long vacancies or engage substitutes. They could not venture out of their quarters in any garments other than their priestly vestments, and could not allow any women into their rooms, with the exception of family or servants. Two of the chaplains were required to be fluent in "Mexicano" (Nahuatl), and the other two in Otomi. Owing to the poverty of most of their patients, the fees that the chaplains could charge were strictly limited. This manuscript was on of four prepared for the chaplains, a revision of rules put in place in the 1760's. The rules were also required to be read aloud each year to remind the chaplains of their duties. 


Heavy damage to heal edges for the first five leaves affecting text. Some staining to the heal edge as well, Edge wear at one time bound with another document. Provenance from a private collector who now is disposing of his collection and was purchased at auction.

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