Testerian catechisms

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Testerian catechism, c. 1524. Centre of Studies of History of Mexico Carso

The Testerian catechisms (Spanish: Catecismos testerianos) are religious documents used in the evangelization of the New Spain. They explain the Catholic doctrine through images based on indigenous conventions prior to the Conquest of Mexico and western Spanish writing and other languages.[1][2][3] These documents were an attempt to be educative materials for those religious that did not know the aboriginal languages then spoken in the territory that is now Mexico. They received their name for Jacobo of Testera, a Franciscan friar who elaborated catechisms of this type.[4]


The missionariwes who participated in the evangelization of the new lands of the American continent looked for ways to transmit the new doctrine.[1] TMesoamerican images and documents were subject to destruction, as they were considered idolatric materials, but were tolerated when used in a religious context. Theatrical representations, music, architecture, public sermons, among others, supported the new religious precepts.[5] The Testerian catechisms were used to transmit the Ten Commandments and prayers like the Lord's Prayer and the Hail Mary.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Morín González, Aidé (2005). "Catecismo testeriano: una lectura de evangelización" (PDF). XVIII Encuentro de Investigadores del Pensamiento Novohispano. Retrieved 2015-12-11.
  2. ^ "Catecismo Testeriano". bdmx.mx. Retrieved 2015-12-12.
  3. ^ María, Fundación Santa; Criado, Buenaventura Delgado (1993-01-01). Historia de la educación en España y América (in Spanish). Ediciones Morata. ISBN 9788471123763.
  4. ^ Tesoros de papel: documentos del Centro de Estudios de Historia de México Condumex (in Spanish). Museo Soumaya. 2006-01-01. ISBN 9789687794334.
  5. ^ Gruzinski, Serge (1991-01-01). La colonización de lo imaginario: Sociedades indígenas y occidentalización en el México español: siglos xvi-xviii (in Spanish). Fondo de Cultura Económica. ISBN 9789681636296.