Santiago Matamoros

April 11, 2008

“Saint James the Moorslayer, one of the most valiant saints and knights the world ever had … has been given by God to Spain for its patron and protection. ” — Cervantes, Don Quixote


2 Responses to “Santiago Matamoros”

  1. Sil said

    Mmmm?? I wonder if God also gave him to the Peruvians and to the Mexicans?

    Jacob the fisherman evolved into the archetypal hero of Western culture. From Sant’ Iago Matamoros (killer of the Moors) to Sant’ Iago Mataindios (killer of Indians) to Sant’ Iago Mataespañois (killer of Spaniards) – everyone wanted him as their hero!
    In Mexico City there is a carving from the altarpiece of the Church of Santiago Tlatelolco showing him as Santiago Mataindios – the Indian-slayer.
    And although Christianity and the Catholic religion were taken to the Americas by the Spaniards, when Mexico fought to obtain its independence from Spain in 1810, Sant’ Iago was exalted as Santiago Mataespañois – the slayer of Spaniards!
    In Peru, during an indigenous uprising in 19th-century they adopted Santiago
    as its champion, using the “Matamoros” iconography of “Santiago Mataespañois” that in Peru had come to be associated with a pre-Columbian deity who drove out evil forces.
    There is a mid-19thC silver statue of Santiago Mataespañois in the Museum of Pilgrimages in Santiago de Compostela.

    and another one – scroll down to under Ano 1998 – (as well as pictures of items from the museum) here:

    You can see the altarpiece of Santiago Mataindios here (click on the photo to enlarge it)

    You can see paintings of Santiago Matamoros and Mataindios together here:

  2. Fr Loren Gonzales said

    Also, remember to invoke the intercession of: Sanpatricio Mataviboras, Sanjorge Matadragon, and let us not forget my patron Sanlorenzo Matamoscas (St. Lawrence the Flyslayer).

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