Antiquities of Mexico [Volume 8] : comprising fac-similes of ancient Mexican paintings and hieroglyphics, preserved in the Royal Libraries of Paris, Berlin, and Dresden; in the Imperial Library of Vienna; in the Vatican Library; in the Borgian Museum at Rome; in the Library of the Institute at Bologna; and in the Bodleian Library at Oxford. Together with the Monuments of New Spain, by M. Dupaix: with their respective scales of measurement and accompanying descriptions. The whole illustrated by many valuable inedited manuscripts


Date: 1848



Antiquities of Mexico is a compilation of facsimile reproductions of Mesoamerican literature such as Maya codices, Mixtec codices, and Aztec codices as well as historical accounts and explorers' descriptions of archaeological ruins. It was assembled and published by Edward King, Lord Kingsborough, in the early decades of the 19th century.

While much of the material pertains to pre-Columbian cultures, there are also documents relevant to studies of the Spanish conquest of the Aztec Empire. Antiquities of Mexico was produced to make copies of rare manuscripts in European collections available for study by scholars.

The work consists of nine volumes, each published in a large elephant folio format. It was originally planned as ten, but Lord Kingsborough died before the full work could be completed. Many of the facsimiles of codices are hand-colored.

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Kingsborough commissioned the Italian landscape painter Agostino Aglio to furnish the reproduction drawings and lithographs of the Mesoamerican artworks and codices used to illustrate the volumes. Born in Cremona and resident in London since 1803, Aglio had previously illustrated antiquities of Ancient Egypt and Magna Graecia on behalf of the English architect William Wilkins.

Aglio would spend the better part of six years traveling to the libraries and museums of Europe to examine and draw all of the "Ancient Mexican" documents, artifacts and manuscripts known in European collections of the time.


Statement of responsibility: by Lord Kingsborough; the drawings, on stone, by A. Aglio

Vols. 1-4: plates; v. 5-9: text

Vols. 1-7: "In seven volumes"; v. 8-9: "In nine volumes."

Imprints vary: v. 6-7: London : Printed by Richard and John E. Taylor : Published by Robert Havell and Colnaghi, Son, and Co., 1831; v. 8-9: London : Printed by Richard and John E. Taylor : Published by Henry G. Bohn, 1848

Printer's statement, v. 7, p. 461, reads: Londres, en la oficina de Ricardo Taylor, 1830

Vol. 9 includes p. [1]-60 at end, signed "Vol. X", but with explicit, p. 60, "End of Vol. IX, which concludes the work." No more published

Vols. 5-9 include, in addition to notes on plates, Kingsborough's various notes, and miscellaneous extracts from Spanish authors: "Viages de Guillelmo [i.e. Guillermo] Dupaix sobre las antiguedades Mejicanas" (v. 5, p. [207]-343); "Libro sexto de la retorica y filosofia, moral y teologia, de la gente Mexicana ... por ... Bernardino de Sahagun" (Bk. 6, chap. 1-40, of Sahagun's "Historia general de las cosas de Nueva Espana"; v. 5, p. [345]-493); "The monuments of New Spain, by M. Dupaix" (transl. of "Viages ..."; v. 6, p. 421-486); "Historia universal [i.e. general] de las cosas de Nueva Espana ... por ... Bernardino de Sahagun" (entire work, except Bk. 6, chap. 1-40; v.7, p. [10], [1]-464); "Historia del origen de las gentes que poblaron la America septentrional que llaman Nueva Espana ... son autor ... Mariano Fernandez de Echeverria y Veitia" (v.8, p.[159]-217 (2nd count))

"Tercera [y cuarta] noticia[s] de la segunda parte de las Noticias historiales de las conquistas de Tierra Firme ... por Fr. Pedro Simon" (v.8, p.[219]-271); "History of the North American Indians ... by James Adair" (1st part of Adair's "History of the American Indians", publ. 1775; v.8 p.[273]-400); "Cartas ineditas de Hernando Cortes" (v.8, p.[401]-418) ; "Relaciones ineditas de Fernandez de Oviedo" (v.8, p. [419]-424) ; "Cronica Mexicana de Fernando de Alvarado Tezozomoc" (v.9, p. [1]-196) ; "Historia Chichimeca por Don Fernando de Alva Ixtlilxochitl" (v.9, p.[197]-316) ; "Relaciones de Don Fernando de Alva Ixtlilxochitl" (v.9, p.[317]-468) ; "Ritos antiguos, sacrificios e idolatrias de los Indios de la Nueva Espana y de su conversion a la fee y quienes fueron los que primero la predicaron" (v.9, p.[1]-60 at end)

Contains text in English, Italian, and Spanish.


Brunet III, 663; Lipperheide Md11; Palau 128006; Sabin 37800.

Publisher: London : Printed by James Moyse. Published by Robert Havell and Colnaghi, Son, and Co




Smithsonian Libraries

ISBN-10: N/A

Date Added: 2019-04-08

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