Abad y Queipo, Manuel (1751–1825)

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Abad y Queipo, Manuel (1751–1825)

Manuel Abad y Queipo (b. 26 August 1751; d. 15 September 1825), bishop of Michoacán (1810–1814) and acute social commentator on late colonial Mexico. The illegitimate son of a noble Asturian family, Abad y Queipo was born in Santa María de Villarpedre, Asturias, Spain. He studied at the University of Salamanca for ten years before immigrating to the Americas, where he received a doctorate in canon law from the University of Guadalajara in 1805. He served in Michoacán from 1784 to 1814, rising through the ecclesiastical hierarchy to become acting bishop (unconfirmed by captive King Ferdinand VII) in 1810. An exemplification of the enlightened clergyman, Abad y Queipo strove to improve local economic conditions, in one instance by promoting the production of raw silk. He also advocated social reforms, such as the abolition of tribute, and he criticized many Bourbon policies, notably the Intendancy System and the sequestration of pious funds.

Abad y Queipo, however, always favored reform within the imperial system. In 1810, when the rebellion led by his old friend Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla broke out, he excommunicated the insurgent leader and unceasingly preached the social and economic evils of civil war. Nonetheless, he was suspected of harboring dangerously liberal views, and the restored Ferdinand VII recalled him to Spain in 1814. Abad y Queipo was finally confirmed as bishop of Michoacán but was never allowed to return to Mexico. In 1822 he resigned his hard-won bishopric to become bishop of Tor-tose. He also served in the provisional junta of 1820, which rekindled Ferdinand's doubts about the cleric's political loyalty; this led in 1824 to his arrest and imprisonment in the monastery of Sisla, where he died.

See alsoMichoacán .


Lillian Estelle Fisher, Champion of Reform: Manuel Abad y Queipo (1955).

Hugh M. Hamill, Jr., The Hidalgo Revolt: Prelude to Mexican Independence (1966).

Nancy M. Farriss, Crown and Clergy in Colonial Mexico: The Crisis of Ecclesiastical Privilege (1968).

Additional Bibliography

Luna, Pablo F. "Sociedad, reforma y propiedad: El liberalismo de Manuel Abad y Queipo, fines del siglo XVIII-comienzos del siglo XIX." Secuencia 52 (January-April 2002): 153-179.

Ortíz Escamilla, Juan. "Morelos y Abad y Queipo: Enfrenta-miento político, 1812–1814." In El nacimiento de México, edited by Patricia Galeana de Valadés. Mexico: Archivo General de la Nación, Fondo de Cultura Económica, 1999.

                                    R. Douglas Cope