A MANUSCRIPT THE CHURCH STATE CONFLICT IN THE FOUNDING OF COLONIAL NICARAGUA

A MANUSCRIPT

THE CHURCH STATE CONFLICT IN THE FOUNDING OF COLONIAL NICARAGUA

By Pat Werner
Ave Maria College of the Americas
San Marcos, Nicaragua
2005

Preliminary Note

This unpublished manuscript is the English version of most of a work I published, in Spanish, in 2000. It touches upon the early history of colonial Nicaragua, from the 1520’s when the first Bishop of Nicaragua began his religious duties, to 1550 when the Bishop of Nicaragua, Antonio de Valdivieso, was assassinated by the sons of former Nicaraguan governor Rodrigo de Contreras. The source of most of the information stated herein came from a 17 volume collection of colonial documents compiled in the 1950‘s by the then Nicaraguan Ambassador to Spain, Andres Vega Bolaños. The Colección Somoza, as the collection came to be called, contains just over 10,000 pages of 16th century documents, transcribed, but with the original spelling and general lack of grammatical form, making the documents read somewhat analogous to Elizabethan English. The tale of the founding of early Nicaragua is very colorful, but not touched upon by many Nicaraguan historians, and so I decided to write this short history based mostly on primary sources, leaving out the historical gloss that has developed in Nicaraguan historiography beginning late in the 19th century. I hope the reader finds these events interesting and that they shed information on the founding of Hispanic institutions on Nicaraguan soil, some of which may still linger in the societal ambience of present day Nicaragua.

Diriamba, Nicaragua
October 13, 2005

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