Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Brian Brege


Catholicism;Early Modern Spain;Relics

Subject Categories

Arts and Humanities | European History | History


This thesis considers two case studies from the transnational Spanish relic trade at the turn of the seventeenth century. The first study is that of Don Guillén de San Clemente y Centellas, a Spanish ambassador active at the end of the sixteenth century who was a conduit for antique and medieval relics for elite collectors within Spain. The second is of Luisa de Carvajal y Mendoza, was a Spanish noblewoman who traveled to England at the beginning of the seventeenth century and retrieved, prepared, and transported the bodies of Catholic martyrs back to Spain as new relics. These case studies reveal how the movement of relics can be used to map early modern networks of social and political power and to uncover connections between secular and religious networks. In addition, they demonstrate the role of relics in debates about the nature of authenticity and the construction of shared religious and national identities in the Counter-Reformation.


Open Access



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.