“THE MOST VALUABLE AND COMPLETE OF ALL WORKS ON THE TOLTEC AND AZTEC RACES”: FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH OF CLAVIGERO’S IMPORTANT HISTORY OF MEXICO, FINELY ILLUSTRATED
(MEXICO) CLAVIGERO, D. Francesco Saverio. The History of Mexico. Collected from Spanish and Mexican Historians, from Manuscripts, and Ancient Paintings of the Indians… To Which Are Added, Critical Dissertations on the Land, the Animals, and Inhabitants of Mexico… Translated from the Original Italian, by Charles Cullen. London: for G. G. J. and J. Robinson, 1787. Two volumes. Quarto, modern three-quarter tan calf, raised bands, red and green morocco spine labels, marbled boards and edges. $3200.
First edition in English of this “valuable work” on Mexico, with a frontispiece folding map in each volume and 25 fine copper-engraved plates depicting the country's flora and fauna, historical figures, warriors, armor, customs, architecture, symbols, and dress, as well as a genealogical table of Mexican kings, attractively bound.
Jesuit priest Clavigero, a native of Vera Cruz, spent 30 years researching the archaeology and antiquities of Mexico. His book lists a variety of historical documents, including those held in the Mendoza, Vatican, and Boturini collections. "A valuable work containing much learned research on the ancient history of Mexico… All the other books that have been elaborated since on the same subject, instead of superseding Clavigero's, have tended rather to enhance its importance" (Cox II:240-41). "The most valuable and complete of all works on the Toltec and Aztec races" (Field, 78-79). First published in Italian 1780-81. Sabin 13519. Streeter I:194. Rich 1787:13. See Bibliotheca Mejicana 381. See Palau II:209. Contemporary ink owner signature to front flyleaf of Volume II.
Occasional faint foxing, calf bindings fine. An attractive copy.