Francisco Marroquín

Most Reverend
Francisco Marroquín Hurtado
Bishop of Santiago de Guatemala


Francisco Marroquín on a Guatemalan stamp
Church Catholic Church
Diocese Diocese of Santiago de Guatemala
In office 1534-1563
Predecessor None
Successor Bernardino de Villalpando
Consecration 8 Apr 1537
by Juan de Zumárraga
Personal details
Born 1478
Santander, Spain
Died 19 Apr 1563
Guatemala City, Guatemala
Nationality Spanish

Francisco Marroquín (1499 – April 18, 1563) was the first bishop of Guatemala,[1] translator of Central American languages and provisional Governor of Guatemala.

Marroquín was born near Santander, Spain. He studied philosophy and theology in Osuna.[2] After entering the priesthood, Marroquín became a professor at the University of Osuna where he met Bishop García de Loaisa, an adviser to Emperor Charles V.[3] Marroquín became a priest in the Spanish royal court.[2] In 1528 the conquistador Pedro de Alvarado, Governor of Guatemala, was in Spain and met Marroquín; he convinced the priest to accompany him back to Guatemala.[4]

After first arriving in Mexico, he traveled onwards to Guatemala with Alvarado, in May 1528. On April 11, 1530, he was appointed parish priest of Guatemala.[5] On December 18, 1534, he was appointed during the papacy of Pope Paul III as Bishop of Santiago de Guatemala[6] and later provisional governor of Guatemala.[5] On 8 Apr 1537, he was consecrated bishop by Juan de Zumárraga, Archbishop of Mexico, with Juan Lopez de Zárate, Bishop of Antequera, Oaxaca serving as co-consecrator.[6] While bishop, he was the principal consecrator of Tomás Casillas, Bishop of Chiapas (1552) and principal co-consecrator of Antonio de Valdivieso, Bishop of Nicaragua (1544).[6]

Marroquín founded the School of Saint Thomas in 1559 (now the University of San Carlos of Guatemala) as part of his efforts to educate the native people. He became a scholar of the K'iche' language and published the first catechism in that language.[7]

Although Universidad Francisco Marroquín is named after him, the university is liberal and does not necessarily abide by Bishop Marroquin's legacy. The University is very proud of its name - Universidad Francisco Marroquin - which honors a beloved priest and a gentleman and scholar of very high standing in Guatemala, and in all of Latin America.


  1. Recinos 1952, 1986, p. 127. n. 75.
  2. 1 2 Recinos 1952, 1986, p. 127.
  3. Pérez de Antón, Francisco (January 13, 1992). "In Praise of Francisco Marroquín" (PDF). Universidad Francisco Marroquín, Guatemala City.
  4. Recinos 1952, 1986, pp. 126–127.
  5. 1 2 "Francisco Marroquín (1499–1563)" (PDF). Religion & Liberty. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty. 12 (5). September and October 2002. Archived from the original (pdf) on June 27, 2009. Retrieved 2008-10-14. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  6. 1 2 3 "Bishop Francisco Marroquín Hurtado" David M. Cheney. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  7. "Francisco Marroquin (1478–1563)" (Spanish). Genesis Megaprogramas, SA. Retrieved 2008-10-14.


Recinos, Adrian (1986) [1952]. Pedro de Alvarado: Conquistador de México y Guatemala (in Spanish) (2nd ed.). Guatemala: CENALTEX Centro Nacional de Libros de Texto y Material Didáctico "José de Pineda Ibarra". OCLC 243309954. 
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Bishop of Santiago de Guatemala
Succeeded by
Bernardino de Villalpando
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