General History of the Things of New Spain

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Illustrated rustic ISBN: 9788490077900
Hardcover ISBN: 9788411265966
Typographic rustic ISBN: 9788498166873

The Historia general de las cosas de la Nueva España brings together twelve books (this present volume includes books 1 to 6). They were published in Mexico by the Franciscan monk Bernardino de Sahagún between 1540 and 1590. He worked from interviews with indigenous informants in Tlatelolco, Texcoco and Tenochtitlan.
The best surviving manuscript of the work is the so-called Florentine Codex, it is in the archives of the Laurentian Library of Florence. It is a copy of the texts whose original source was lost, possibly destroyed by the Spanish authorities.
Throughout the twelve books that make up the work, different issues of the culture of the natives are addressed. It talks about religious beliefs, astronomy and divination, prayers and rhetorical forms typical of traditional discourses in the Nahuatl language, knowledge about the sun, moon and stars, or trade, history, Aztec society and the Spanish conquest.
The Historia general de las cosas de la Nueva España remains one of the main sources of information about the life of the Aztecs before the “discovery”.
It is also the first attempt to practice the complicated ethnographic exercise of “putting oneself in the place of the other”. Sahagún tried to assume the logic of an alien mentality to understand the world of the original inhabitants of Mexico.

Edited by Juan Carlos Temprano.

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