Monasterio de San Lorenzo, ms. Ç.IV.S
(“place of the fish”) is a territory in the middle
western part of México which belonged to the Tarasco or
Kingdom. This codex, copied in the years 1539-1540, contains the
narration of a Franciscan monk, whom
the American historian Dr. Benedict Warren identified as Fray
Gerónimo de Alcalá. The period covered by his
relation goes from the beginning of the XIII century to the XVI century.
narration is in 3 parts: The first part, unfortunately lost, dealt
with the gods and main religious fests of the people of Tarasco.
Second part consists of 35 chapters and relates the wars and settlement
in Michoacán. The last part, 29 chapters, deals with
the forms of government, marriage celebrations and the arrival of the
codex is an exceptional document, a testimony of the old,
courageous and invincible people of Tarasco. The relation of their
settlement, wars, customs, religion and forms of government,
accompanied by their illustrations is an invaluable treasure not only
for México but for America.
manuscript reached the Library of Philip II and today is one of the
most important manuscripts of the Library of the Monastery of San
Lorenzo in El Escorial. In 1869 the first publication of the work
appeared in Spain and since then about ten other editions were
published, but only now with this facsimile, showing all the best
technology of today, do we have a reproduction so close to the original
to allow us to fully appreciate and study the codex.
facsimile: 306 pp in the original format, 15 x 21 cm; commentary (606
pp) with contributions by Armando Mauricio, María del Carmen
Hidalgo, Vicenta Cortés, Benedic Warren, Francisco Miranda, Juan
José Batalla, and Gerardo Sánchez. Testimonio
Compañia Editorial. Out of print.
call for special OMI price
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