Penn Library

CULTURAL READINGS: Colonization & Print in the Americas

Jay I. Kislak Foundation
Edward King, Viscount Kingsborough,
Antiquities of Mexico: comprising facsimiles of ancient Mexican paintings and hieroglyphs.

London: R. Havell, 1830-1848.

Edward King was obsessed by the pre-Columbian civilizations of Mexico. He wanted nothing less than to possess the Mexican past and make it available to others. To that end, he hired artists to visit the major collections of Europe and make copies of important codices, and he sought to acquire as many as he could. The result was a lavish set of nine folio volumes, published at King's own expense over nearly twenty years - a set without parallel in Meso-American scholarship. King was a poor scholar, however, and his forays into Mexican history were pastiches of myth and wild speculation. His project bankrupted him, and he spent his last years in a Dublin prison.

Other illustration from this edition Kingsborough

[See also in this exhibition, a Las Casas manuscript from Lord Kingsborough's collection]

Colonial Fictions, Colonial Histories

Exhibition Contents | Introduction | Essays | Bibliography & Links

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