Francisco Marroquín (1499 – April 18, 1563) was the first bishop of Guatemala,[1] translator of Central American languages and provisional Governor of Guatemala.

Marroquín was born near Santander, Spain. He studied philosophy and theology in Osuna.[2] After entering the priesthood, Marroquín became a professor at the University of Osuna where he met Bishop García de Loaisa, an adviser to Emperor Charles V.[3] Marroquín became a priest in the Spanish royal court.[2] In 1528 the conquistador Pedro de Alvarado, Governor of Guatemala, was in Spain and met Marroquín; he convinced the priest to accompany him back to Guatemala.[4]

After first arriving in Mexico, he traveled onwards to Guatemala with Alvarado, in May 1528. On April 11, 1530, he was appointed parish priest of Guatemala.[5] On December 18, 1534, he was appointed during the papacy of Pope Paul III as Bishop of Santiago de Guatemala[6] and later provisional governor of Guatemala.[5] On April 8, 1537, he was consecrated bishop by Juan de Zumárraga, Archbishop of Mexico, with Juan Lopez de Zárate, Bishop of Antequera, Oaxaca serving as co-consecrator.[6] While bishop, he was the principal consecrator of Tomás Casillas, Bishop of Chiapas (1552) and principal co-consecrator of Antonio de Valdivieso, Bishop of Nicaragua (1544).[6]

Marroquín founded the School of Saint Thomas in 1559 (now the University of San Carlos of Guatemala) as part of his efforts to educate the native people. He became a scholar of the K'iche' language and published the first catechism in that language.[7]

The Universidad Francisco Marroquín in Guatemala City is named for him.


  1. ^ Recinos 1952, 1986, p. 127. n. 75.
  2. ^ a b Recinos 1952, 1986, p. 127.
  3. ^ Pérez de Antón, Francisco (January 13, 1992). "In Praise of Francisco Marroquín" (PDF). Universidad Francisco Marroquín, Guatemala City. 
  4. ^ Recinos 1952, 1986, pp. 126–127.
  5. ^ a b "Francisco Marroquín (1499–1563)" (PDF). Religion & Liberty. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty. 12 (5). September and October 2002. Archived from the original (pdf) on June 27, 2009. Retrieved 2008-10-14.  Check date values in: date= (help)
  6. ^ a b c "Bishop Francisco Marroquín Hurtado" Catholic-Hierarchy.org. David M. Cheney. Retrieved February 29, 2016.
  7. ^ "Francisco Marroquin (1478–1563)" (Spanish). Genesis Megaprogramas, SA. Retrieved 2008-10-14. 


Recinos, Adrian (1986) [1952]. Pedro de Alvarado: Conquistador de México y Guatemala (in Spanish) (2nd ed.). Guatemala: CENALTEX Centro Nacional de Libros de Texto y Material Didáctico "José de Pineda Ibarra". OCLC 243309954. 
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Bishop of Santiago de Guatemala
Succeeded by
Bernardino de Villalpando