"A Highly Esteemed Work"-Sabin
CORTÉS, Hernan. Historia de Nueva-Espana. escrita por su Conquistador Hernan Cortes aumentada con otros documentos, y notas. Mexico: Joseph Antonio de Hogel , 1770.
First edition of one of the seminal works on the early civilization of Mexico and its conquest. Folio (10 11/16 x 7 3/4 inches; 271 x 196 mm.). [20], xvi, 400, [18, index] pp. With frontispiece engraved by Navarro, folding map of new Spain engraved in 1769, large folding plate of the great temple of Mexico, thirty-one plates of Mexican hieroglyphics, folding map of California (by the pilot Domingo del Castillo in 1541), and a full page engraving of the ancient Mayan calendar. With errata.

Contemporary vellum with brown morocco spine label, lettered in gilt. Some minor staining to vellum. Spine label a bit chipped. A small professional repair to first folding map. Inner hinges cracked but firm. Some light spotting and a bit of worming throughout. Overall, a very good copy; exceptionally clean, well-margined and in a contemporary binding.

An extremely important work containing valuable documents of the history of the conquest of Mexico. In this book Lorenzana (who was the Archbishop of Mexico from 1766 to 1772) reprints three of the Hernando Cortés letters to Charles V, with copious annotations, along with two highly important maps: Alzate’s map of New Spain and Castillo’s map of the Pacific Coast. The Historia de Nueva-Espana also includes a reproduction of an Aztec codex (engraved on thirty-one sheets), the Matrícula de Tributos, the first native book to be published in Europe. This work is particularly important in that it reveals the economics of the Aztec Empire, which had existed for only a little over a century before the Spanish conquest. The Aztecs first pacified foreign territories through commercial trade, and after their submission, exacted tribute in merchandise and raw materials desired by the Aztec elite in the central highlands of Mexico. This codex illustrates the precise tributes and the quantities of each, extracted on a regular basis like taxes, from the new provinces. "The notes by Lorenzana are of value, being chiefly on local question. This collection led to the appearance of several translations" (Sabin).

Medina V, 5380. Palau 63204. Sabin 16938. Wagner, Spanish Southwest, 152.

HBS # 65456 $22,500