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AUCTION 19

218. [VIRGIN OF GUADALUPE].  FERNÁNDEZ DE ECHEVERRÍA Y VEYTIA, Mariano de. Baluartes de México. Descripcion histórico de las cuatro milagrosas imágenes de Nuestra Señora, que se veneran en la muy noble, leal, é imperial ciudad de México, capital de la Nueva España, á los cuatros vientos principales, en sus extramuros, y de sus magníficos santuarios, con otras particularidades...Obra póstuma, dala á luz el R. P. Fr. Antonio María de San José, Carmelita Descalzo.  Mexico: En la imprenta de D. Alejandro Valdés, 1820.  [10], 89 [1 blank] pp.  Small 4to, original plain paper wrappers, stitched.  Wrappers somewhat stained and with marginal chipping, upper wrapper with long, clean tear and burnhole, scattered light foxing to text, small wormhole through text (costing parts of a few letters), some leaves moderately waterstained at lower right blank margins, a few leaves loose.

     First edition.  Mathes, Bibliotheca Novohispana Guadalupana 1820 (Fernández de Echeverría Veytia). Medina, Hispano-Americana 11880. Palau 88423.  Dicc. Porrúa V:6788.  Puttick & Simpson, Bibliotheca Mejicana 600.  Sabin 21776.  Sutro, p. 128.  The work is a study of the four major shrines to the Virgin Mary in Mexico City (Guadalupe, Los Remedios, La Piedad, and La Bala).  Although all four shrines are discussed, by far the bulk of the book is devoted to the Virgin of Guadalupe, whom the author discusses with much enthusiasm, even relating a miracle in a shrine to her in Spain.

     In 1794 Spanish historian Juan Bautista Muñoz published a Memoria in Madrid attacking the validity of the apparition of the Virgin of Guadalupe. Naturally this caused great consternation in Mexico, but the strongest responses came late in the Mexican Wars for Independence—when the Virgin of Guadalupe became a powerful symbol of national unity. Thus, in 1820, defending the Virgin of Guadalupe against a Spanish historian’s assault took on an entirely different dimension. According to the introduction to the present work, the book was one of those published at this time to bolster Mexican patriotism in the War of Independence.  The work was ready to go to press in 1779, but several circumstances prevented its publication at the time.

     The work was reprinted in 1967 by  E. Aviņa Levy  in Guadalajara.  Historian, lawyer, philosopher Mariano Fernández de Echeverría y Veytia (1718-1780) received his law degree from the University of Mexico in 1737. He went to Spain in 1738 and travelled extensively over Europe.  He was friends with Boturini and carried on correspondence with Clavijero.  All his major works were published posthumously.  The Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection at the University of Texas, which holds the author’s papers, has the manuscript draft version of this work.

     Porrúa, and after him, Palau, calls for an engraved plate.  However, the plate in Porrúa’s copy was engraved by Manuel Salvador Carmona (1730-1807), who spent his entire life apparently in Madrid. Thus, it is unlikely that he engraved a plate for a book published in Mexico City thirteen years after his death, and the Porrúa copy merely had it inserted from another source.  ($300-600)

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