Lizárraga, Reginaldo de

views updated


Dominican bishop and author; b. Medellín, Extremadura, Spain, 1539; d. Asunción, Paraguay, Nov. 1609. Baltasar de Obando, as he was born, went to America with his parents. In 1560 he became a Dominican in Lima. He went to Chile for the first time as head of the province of St. Lawrence Martyr. His trip from Callao, Peru, to Coquimbo, Chile, was exceptional because it took him only 22 days. His second trip took place in 1587, and he was still in Santiago when Bishop Medellín, a relative of his, died (1593). Later he lived in the Jauja Valley, where he first planned his book. In 1599 he was made bishop of Imperial, Chile, but he remained in Lima until the middle of 1602. His see city had been ravaged by a native uprising begun in 1598, and he had to move to Concepción (1603). He did not stay there long. By the beginning of 1608 he was on his way to the Bishopric in Rio de la Plata, with headquarters in Asunción. Fray Reginaldo was both a man of action and an author. Meléndez, his biographer, mentions six of his works. Only two are extant: one report and the extensive Descripción breve de toda la tierra del Perú, Tucumán, Rio de la Plata y Chile, also called Descripción y población de las Indias (C. A. Romero, ed., Lima 1908; R. Rojas, ed., Buenos Aires 1916). Caillet-Bois characterizes this work as a "little encyclopedia of practical knowledge." The report entitled "Una opinión relativa a la guerra contra los indios chilenos," written in Lima in 1599, has been published in Cuerpo de documentos del siglo XVI (Mexico City 1943).

Bibliography: j. t. medina, Historia de la literatura colonial de Chile, 3 v. (Santiago de Chile 1878). r. rojas, Los coloniales, v. 3, 4 of Historia la literatura argentina, 9 v. (4th ed. Buenos Aires 1957). j. caillet bois, Historia de la literatura argentina (Buenos Aires 1958).

[a. m. escudero]