The Oroz Codex. Translated and edited by Angelico Chavez, O. F. M. Washington, D. C.: Academy of American Franciscan History, 1972. Bibliography. Index. Notes. 395 pages.
What Fray Angelico Chavez has termed the Oroz Codex is an important chronicle concerning Franciscan activities in sixteenth-century New Spain, written by Fray Pedro Oroz, 1584-1586. In the manner of the day, Fray Oroz copied the writings of earlier chroniclers, and so his work is especially valuable.
The Franciscans, who would missionize Alta California in the late eighteenth century, were already turning their attention toward the north of New Spain in the sixteenth century. Fray Oroz provides unique information about those Franciscans who accompanied Coronado in 1540, and discusses later Franciscan efforts in New Mexico as well. He also mentions, in passing, Fray Diego de Alcala, for whom San Diego would be named, and who was then being considered for canonization.
This is a publication of the Academy of American Franciscan History (P. O. Box 34440, Washington, D. C. 20034), which has contributed mightily to the historiography of Spanish California. DJW