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Díaz, Manuel


Missionary to China and astronomer; b. Castello Branco, Portugal, 1574; d. Hangzhou, China, March 4,1659. He is called "junior" to distinguish him from Manuel Díaz, SJ (15591639), who was a Portuguese missionary in Eastern India and a figure in the early disputes on the indian rites controversy. Díaz entered the Society of Jesus in 1592 and sailed for the Indies in 1601. He arrived in China in 1610 and taught theology for six years at Macau. He worked also in the missionary fields of Fujian and Zhejiang in South China, and, as the first vice provincial of China for 18 years, traveled extensively throughout the Orient. He published several works in Chinese on ascetical theology and on astronomy; they include Tai i luen (dissertation on the Incarnation), Cheng king tche kiai (commentary on the Gospels), and Tien wen lio (explanation of the celestial spheres).

Bibliography: c. sommervogel et al., Bibliothèque de la Compagnie de Jésus (Brussels-Paris 18901932) 3:4445. r. streit and j. dindinger, Bibliotheca missionum (Freiburg 1916) 5:710711, 738, 743745. g. h. dunne, Generation of Giants: The Story of the Jesuits in China in the Last Decades of the Ming Dynasty (Notre Dame, Ind. 1962).

[e. d. mcshane]

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