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Becerra Tanco, Luis


Mexican scholar whose writings are an important source of information about the apparitions of Our Lady of guadalupe; b. Taxco, 1602; d. Mexico City, 1672. He received the baccalaureate in liberal arts and Canon Law from the University of Mexico, where he was appointed to the chair of mathematics. He also distinguished himself in physics and chemistry. Becerra Tanco was regarded by his contemporaries as a marvel in the field of linguistics, for he mastered Hebrew, Greek, Latin, Italian, French, Portuguese, and English, and he taught the native tongues of Nahuatl and Otomi. He was renowned also as poet, preacher, philosopher, historian, and scientist. He was ordained under benefice in 1631, and he served in various curacies of the Archdiocese of Mexico. As a historian of the Church in Mexico, he is noted principally for his research on the apparitions of the Blessed Virgin at Tepeyac. His book Origen milagroso del Santuario de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (Mexico City 1666) was reissued in an enlarged posthumous edition in 1675 under the title Felicidad de Mexico en la admirable aparición de la Vírgen María Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe and has been reprinted many times.

Bibliography: beristain, Diccionario universal de historiay de geografía, 10 v. (Mexico City 185356) 1:520.

[j. a. magner]

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