Penn Library

CULTURAL READINGS: Colonization & Print in the Americas

Jay I. Kislak Foundation
Juan de Torquemada,
Los veinte y un libros rituales y Monarchia Indiana...

Seville: Matthias Clauijo, 1615.

Torquemada's history articulates the limits of assimilation on the uncertain frontiers of the Spanish empire. Not only was Torquemada, a Franciscan, interested in indigenous languages and religious ceremonies, but he also attempted to reconstruct the distant past of indigenous peoples by gathering evidence from extant monuments, art, and codices, as well as from interviews with natives. Torquemada envisioned the Aztec world as a grand "monarchia," and in so doing he gave coherence and shape to the disparate aspects of its society. As a missionary, Torquemada was also intensely interested in the progress of the gospel and in the labors of his fellow Franciscans. Much of the third volume of his text is given over to chronicling the history of the order in the New World and to writing the biographies of his predecessors.

Religion and Print

Exhibition Contents | Introduction | Essays | Bibliography & Links

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