Francisco de la Cruz, María Pizarro, Spanish Inquisition, Black studies, Queer studies, Colonial Peru


This note offers a transcription of the proceso de fe of Cornielis (alias Diego Cornejo), an enslaved Black man held by the Tribunal of the Spanish Inquisition in Lima in the 1570s. It is housed in the Archivo Histórico Nacional in Madrid, Spain. The inquest was opened in Cuzco in 1577, alleging that Cornielis had escaped prison to deliver messages from Francisco de la Cruz, the Dominican friar charged with heresy, to his followers in the Viceroyalty of Peru. I argue that Cornielis was queer and attracted the attention of De la Cruz, who mentions him several times in his testimony to inquisitors. Because Cornielis’s case was not published with the three-volume edition of the De la Cruz case curated by Vidal Abril Castelló and Miguel Abril Stoffels, it has not garnered critical attention.

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