Book culture in the Irish Mission: The case of father Juan de Santo Domingo (1636–1644)


  • Cristina Bravo Lozano


The Irish Mission was created in 1610, under the sponsorship of the Spanish monarchy, to preserve Catholicism in the British Isles. The training of priest and friars was heavily reliant on the use of bibliographic material. Short manuscripts, books and printed writings were supplementary tools for the missionaries’ confessional work. Their pastoral duty could not be completed without access to readings and sermons. All these resources had to be smuggled as part of other merchandise to avoid the English control. The supply of doctrinal and theological works, chiefly from the Iberian Peninsula and the Spanish Low Countries and their commercial channels, was, however, beset by constant problems. It was the case of father Juan de Santo Domingo and his shipment of books seized in Bilbao in 1636. This study presents one of the few examples of circulation of texts between the Spanish monarchy and Ireland in the framework of the Irish Mission during the seventeenth century.


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