Palafox, John De

, natural son of James de Palafox, marquis de Hariza, in the kingdom of Arragon, was born in 1600. His mother, it is said, attempted to drown him at his birth, but one of his father’s vassals drew him out of the water, and took care of him till the age at which he was acknowledged by his parents. Philip IV. appointed Palafox member of the council of war; then that of the Indies. Having afterwards chosen the ecclesiastical profession, he was made bishop of Los Angelos, “Angelopolis,” in New Spain, in 1639, with the title of visitor of the courts of chancery and courts of audience, and judge of the administration of the three viceroys of the Indies. Palafox employed his authority in softening the servitude of the Indians, checking robbery in the higher ranks, and vice in the lower. He had also great contentions with the Jesuits concerning episcopal rights. He was made bishop of Osina or Osma, in Old Castille, in 1653, which diocese he governed with much prudence and regularity, and died, in great reputation for sanctity, September 30, 1659, aged 59. This prelate left some religious books, of which the principal are, “Homilies on the Passion of Christ,” translated into French by Amelot de la Houssaye, 16to; several tracts on the “Spiritual Life,” translated by the abbé le Roi; “The Shepherd of Christmas-night,” &c. but he is best known by his “History of the Siege of Fontarabia;” and “History of the Conquest of China by the Tartars,” 8vo. There is a collection of his works printed at Madrid in 13 vols. fol. 1762, and a life by Dinouart in French, 1767, 8vo.2