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09.04.2009

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National Museum of the Viceroyship
Attractions of Mexico City

Address: Plaza Hidalgo No. 99. Tepozotlan, Estado de México.
Opened Tuesday to Sunday from 9 to 18:00 hrs.


The National Museum of the Viceroyship is one of the most important museums in Mexico. Its job is to offer educational and enjoyable experiences to the society, by triggering the appreciation of the viceroyal period in the New Spain, so as to strengthen and spread the country’s historical memory.

During the viceroyal period in the New Spain, the building belonged to the Society of Jesus. It housed in its interior one of the most important Jesuit schools, the Novice School of San Francisco Javier, and today, its temple is one of the most important baroque works of the 18th Century in the American continent.

The members of the Society of Jesus arrived in the New Spain in 1572 with the objective of supporting the evangelization and education process of the Spanish children who lived in the newly formed cities. In 1580 they arrived to Tepotzotlán, and later established a school of indigenous dialects for the Jesuits. A short time after, they also founded the College of San Martín for the children of noble Indians and later the College of San Francisco Javier, a place of reflection and study for the novices.

In 1767, King Charles III ordered the expulsion of the Jesuits from all Spanish territories. The building which had housed the three colleges of Tepozotlán remained abandoned until 1774, year in which the archbishop installed the Instruction Seminar, Voluntary Retreat and Correction School for clergymen which only functioned for a few years. In 1933, the building was declared National Monument and in 1964, the National Museum of the Viceroyship was established.

 

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