AUCTION 23

 

“Best Edition”—Compiled & Augmented by González Barcia

Very Fine Copy in Original Vellum, Maps Excellent

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178. HERRERA [Y TORDESILLAS], Antonio de [& Andrés González de Barcia Carballido y Zúñiga]. [Atlas] Descripción de las Indias Occidentales.... [Text & index] Historia general de los hechos de los castellanos en las islas i tierra firme del mar oceano.... Madrid, 1726, 1728, 1730. The Historia is divided into eight decades, each of which has its own distinct engraved pictorial title page (copies vary; a variety of binding orders exists). See collations below. Total plate count: 9 copper-engraved title pages (each engraved title divided into ten to fourteen compartments, in which are illustrations of Conquest and Colonization (portraits (39), battles (72), codices, Native Americans and their religious and social practices, views of Mexico, Panama, etc.); 14 folded copper-engraved maps. Atlas + 8 decades of text + index, bound in 5 vols., folio (30 x 22.8 cm), original limp vellum, contemporary sepia ink manuscript titles on spines, edges tinted red. A few old stains to binding and one ancient-looking primitive repair to Vol. III binding, occasional skillful repairs to text (including early re-margining of Vol. I title and one short tear repaired—no loss to image or border), first map with original thin crease (11 cm long, about half affecting image, remainder in blank margin), otherwise very fine, engravings excellent. Overall, a superb set in original condition. A few scattered old blue ink stamps on text pages (Convento Franciscano de San Felipe).

Contents of Bound Volumes

Volume 1

Atlas: Descripcion de las Indias Ocidentales de Antonio de Herrera, Cronista Mayor de Sv Magd. de las Indias, y su Cronista de Castilla. Al Rey Nro. Señor. [imprint below] En Madrid en la Oficina Real de Nicolas Rodríguez Franco, Año de 1730 [date altered from 1726 to 1730]. Engraved title with globe of Western Hemisphere and sea gods at top; center with Spanish coat of arms; surrounded by images including miniature portrait medallion of author, representations of Mexican deities, first king of Mexico (Acamapichtli), Templo mayor, glyphs, etc. [2, engraved title], [38], [1] 2-78 pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces, 14 copper-engraved folded maps on original pale grey tinted ground (see list below).

First Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano. Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista mayor de Sv Md. de las Indias y Sv Cronista de Castilla en quatro Decadas desde el Año de 1492 hasta el de [1]531. Decada primera Al Rey Nuro. Señor. del Prete. Laguna [imprint below] En Madrid en la Imprenta Real de Nicolas Rodríguez Franco Año de 1730 [date altered from 1726 to 1730]. Engraved title with circular map of Western Hemisphere at top, portrait medallion at each of the four corners (King Ferdinand, Queen Isabella, Christopher Columbus, Bartolome Columbus); center with Spanish coat of arms; sides with four scenes of conquest and warfare (Spanish settlement of La Navidad, first European settlement in the Caribbean, Trinidad, Venezuela, etc). [2, engraved title], [4], [1] 2-292 pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Second Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista Mayor de Su Magestad de las Yndias y Cronista de Castilla y Leon Decada Segunda al Rey Nuestro Señor. [imprint below] En Madrid en la Officina Real de Nicolas Rodríguez Franco Año de 1726. Con Privilegio de su Majestad. Engraved title with portrait medallion at each of the four corners (Diego Velasquez de Cuellar, governor of Cuba and founder of Havana; Vasco Nuñez de Balboa, discoverer of the Pacific Ocean; Juan de Grijalva de Cuellar, early explorer of Yucatan; and Juan Ponce de Leon, discoverer of Florida); Spanish royal coat of arms at center; scenes of warfare of the men portrayed, Aztec idols, Moctezuma carried on a litter, coastlines of Panama, Cuba, etc. [2, engraved title], [4], 1-288 pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Volume 2

Third Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista Mayor de Su Magd. de las Yndias y Cronista de Castilla y Leon Decada Terzera al Rey nuestro Señor. [imprint below] En Madrid en la Officina Real de Nicolas Rodríguez Franco Anno 1726. con privilegio de su Magd.Engraved title with portrait medallion at each of the four corners (Hernán Cortés, Ferdinand Magellan, Portuguese explorer who led the first expedition to sail from the Atlantic to the Pacific; Christoval de Olid, would-be conqueror of Honduras who rebelled against Cortés; Gonzalo de Sandoval, right-hand man of Cortés who founded Colima); at center is the Spanish royal coat of arms; ten vignettes showing scenes from the Conquest, the Strait of Magellan, murder of Magellan, triumphant return to Spain, etc. [2, engraved title], [2], [1] 2-296 pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Volume 3

Fourth Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista Mayor de Su Magestad de las Yndias y Cronista de Castilla y Leon Decada Quarta al Rey Nuestro Señor [imprint below] En Madrid en la Officina Real de Nicolas Rodriguez Franco Anno 1730 [date altered from 1726 to 1730]. Con Privilegio de su Majestad. Engraved title with portrait medallion at each of the four corners (Diego de Almagro, participated in conquest of Peru and discover of Chile; Francisco Pizarro, conqueror of the Incan empire; Pedro de Alvarado, considered the conquistador of most of Central America; Diego de Ordás, early explorer of Panama and Colombia); Spanish royal coat of arms at center; with scenes of the warfare, flight, and discoveries of the conquistadors in the four portraits, plus a scene of Hernando de Soto at San Miguel. [2, engraved title], [4], 1-232 pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Fifth Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista Mayor de Su Magestad de las Yndias y Cronista de Castilla y Leon Decada Quinta al Rey. Nuestro Señor [imprint below] En Madrid. por Francisco Martinez Abad. Año 1728 [date altered from 1727 to 1728]. Engraved title with 13 portrait medallions of Amerindians in regalia, headdresses, and with cultural artifacts; at center is the Spanish royal coat of arms, and below that the arms of the President of the Council of the Indies. [2, engraved title], [6], 1-252 pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Volume 4

Sixth Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista Mayor de Su Magestad de las Yndias y Cronista de Castilla y Leon Decada Sesta al Rey. Nuestro Señor [imprint below] En Madrid en la Officina Real de Nicolas Rodriguez Franco. 1730 [date altered from 1726 to 1730]. Con privilegio de su Majestad. Engraved title with portrait medallion at each of the four corners (the conquistadors of Peru: Alonso de Alvarado; Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada; Rodrigo Orgonez; Sebastian de Belalcazar); Spanish royal coat of arms at center; six vignettes showing battles, imprisonment, treaty between Almagro and Alvarado, etc. [2, engraved title], [4], 1-236 pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Seventh Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista Mayor de Su Magestad de las Yndias y Cronista de Castilla y Leon Decada Setima al Rey. Nuestro Señor [imprint below] En Madrid en la Officina Real de Nicolas Rodriguez Franco. 1730 [date altered from 1726 to 1730]. Con Privilegio de su Majestad. Engraved title with portrait medallion at each of the four corners (Blasco Nuñez Vela; Cristóbal Vaca de Castro, governor of Peru; Pedro de Valdivia, governor of Chile; Hernando de Soto); Spanish royal coat of arms at center; five vignettes of scenes of battles in Chile and the Gulf of Mexico, the fort and major Spanish city on the Gulf (present-day Mobile), De Soto’s retreat to Florida, etc. [2, engraved title], [4], 1-245 [1, blank] pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Volume 5

Eighth Decade: Historia general de los hechos de los Castellanos en las Islas y Tierra Firme del Mar Oceano Escrita por Antonio de Herrera Cronista Mayor de Su Magestad de las Yndias y Cronista de Castilla y Leon Decada Octava al Rey Nuestro Señor [imprint below] En Madrid en la Officina Real de Nicolas Rodriguez Franco. 1730 [date altered from 1726 to 1730]. Con Privilegio de Su Majestad. Engraved title with portrait medallion at each of the four corners (four conquistadors involved in the civil wars in Peru during the middle of the sixteenth century to restore power to Spain: Pedro de la Gasca, Gabriel de Rojas, Diego Centeno, General Pedro Alonso de Hinojosa); Spanish royal coat of arms at center; six vignettes of battle scenes in Peru, Panama, etc. [2, engraved title], [4], 1-251 [1, blank] pp., printed in double columns, engraved head-piece on first page of text, woodcut initials, head- and tail-pieces.

Index: [Divisional title, at top of first page] Tabla General de las cosas notables; y personas contenidas en la descripcion de las Indias Occidentales, i en las ocho decadas antecedentes.... [Colophon] En Madrid: En la Imprenta de Francisco Martinez Abad. Año de MCCXXVIII [1728]. [450] pp., printed in triple columns, woodcut initial and colophon.

Maps in Atlas (Descripción)

1. [Below upper border] Descripcion de las Yndias Ocidentalis 1. [cartouche at lower center] Entre los dos meridianos señala dos secontiene la navegacion y descubrimiento que compete a los Castellanos. Plate mark: 23.5 x 32.5 cm. Precedes p. [1]. North and South America, with parts of Asia, the Philippines, Europe (Portugal and Canary Islands), etc. Clearly set out is the bitterly debated Papal line of demarcation established in the Treaty of Tordesillas (1494), dividing the lands between the Spanish and Portuguese with no vote allowed the original inhabitants. Few topographical details are shown, and the northwest part of North America is almost blank. California is named and shown attached to North America. This map and the others in this work were expanded by Herrera from the manuscript maps of Juan López de Velasco ordered by Phillip II. The challenge that faced López de Velasco (d. 1598) was to make a map of the New World without seeing it and while an ocean away from it in Spain. To him and other sixteenth-century Europeans, the New World was the missing part of their cosmos, or order. “López de Velasco’s attempts to make the New World knowable through maps rank among the high cosmographic achievements of the sixteenth century” (see Barbara E. Mundy in The Mapping of New Spain, University of Chicago Press, 2000, pp. 11-12, 17-27, 213-215). Antochiw, Historia Cartographica de la Peninsula de Yucatán, p. 16. Burden, The Mapping of North America 140n (describing the 1601). Hayes, Historical Atlas of the North Pacific Ocean, p. 1107. Tooley, Landmarks of Mapmaking p. 16mo (illustrating 1601). Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 63-64n. Wagner, The Cartography of the Northwest Coast, No. 535 (noting it is the same as 226, but re-engraved). Martin & Martin, p. 77n: “Protective of her gigantic New World empire, Spain kept secret with few exceptions, as much information as possible, with most of her maps and charts remaining unpublished. Usually only when her ships would suffer piracy from those of the other European powers, and Spanish maps and charts were recovered, did Spain contribute new knowledge to the cartography of the New World. Yet Spain did permit some compilation and distribution of information concerning the New World, with the best work done by Antonio de Herrera...a well-educated and capable scholar who had rare access to the archives in Spain.... The dearth of information on [his maps of America] reflects not only the official Spanish position concerning the information it wished disseminated, but also Spanish priorities in exploration and the consequent lack of interior investigations. Interestingly, for the period in which the maps were drawn, the general outlines were essentially correct.”

2. Descripcion de las Yndias del Norte 2. Plate mark: 21.6 x 29.8 cm. Faces p. 4. Map of North America, including Central America, the northernmost part of South America, and the Caribbean. Among the few locations are Florida (in quite a different conformation than in preceding map), Yucatan, audiencias of New Galicia, New Spain, Guatemala, Española, and New Spain. Antochiw, Historia Cartográfica de la Península de Yucatán, p. 137n. Burden, The Mapping of North America 141n (citing the 1601). Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 65-66n. Martin & Martin, p. 18n: “The only printed Spanish map of this period, appearing in...Herrera’s...official history of the Indies,...is typical of the official Spanish secrecy concerning their domains; it reveals almost no information on the interior”; p. 77n: “For the period in which the maps were drawn, the general outlines were essentially correct.... Although adding little to the composite of the Gulf region, Herrera’s maps remain as documentation for the claims and attitudes of one of the great New World powers”; & Plate 7.

3. Descripcion del destricto del audiencia de la Española. 3. Plate mark: 21 x 21.6 cm. Faces p. 6. Map of the Caribbean, southern North America to present Port Royal (South Carolina), Florida, and the northern part of South America. Burden, The Mapping of North America 142n (citing the 1601): “Of interest to us on this map is the distinctive narrow Florida peninsula. Unlike the previous item [141n] some internal detail and nomenclature is given. It contains a relatively accurate delineation of the R. de S. Matheo, St. Johns River, with a large upstream lake. Along with the appearance of Santagustin [San Augustine], it illustrates the presence of the Spanish in Florida since 1565. This is one of the more detailed of Herrera’s maps.” Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 67-68n.

4. Descripçion del destricto del audiençia de Nueva España. 4. Plate mark: 20.4 x 32.4 cm. Faces p. 16. Map of Central America, including the Yucatan peninsula, present-day Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala. Rivers and settlements are located. Antochiw, Historia Cartográfica de la Península de Yucatán, p. 136. Reinhartz, Mapping and Empire, Illustration 3.1 & p. 58: “A particular manifestation of European rivalry in the Americas was the French and British campaign of cartographic ‘filibustering’ against the Spanish northern borderlands. From the founding of its American empire and the 1503 establishment of Casa de Contratación, the official clearing house for New World information in Seville, Spain held such geographic knowledge to be a ‘state secret’ and guarded it at all costs. Hence, although Spain had the best data, over the next two centuries very few detailed Spanish maps of the Americas were published. The well-known maps of Herrera, such as Descripçion del destricto del audiençia de Nueva España, were an extreme expression of the Spanish geographic-cartographic paranoia during this period. They show only relatively accurate outlines of landmasses, with little interior detail. As a result, Spanish claims especially to frontier areas like the northern borderlands were never securely made public.” Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 69-70n.

5. Descripcion del destricto del audiencia de la Nueva Galicia. 5. Plate mark: 20.7 x 29.7 cm. Faces p. 22. Map of part of Central America, including present-day Mexican states of Aguascalientes, Colima, and Jalisco, and parts of Durango, Guanajuato, Michoacán, Nayarit, and Zacatecas. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 71-72n. The establishment and delimitation of the political jurisdiction of Nueva Galicia began with the founding of Colima by Cortés’ agents in 1525. Guzmán’s relentless advance toward Culiacán in 1531 succeeded in establishing a new Spanish outpost far to the north of the intended original frontier settlement. This success emboldened the Spanish to widen their horizons cartographically and otherwise, a resolve strengthened with the discovery of the rich silver mines in the these regions, particularly Zacatecas. The challenging terrain would prove less taxing than the Chichimecas (see Philip Wayne Powell, “The Chichimecas: Scourge of the Silver Frontier in Sixteenth-Century Mexico” in Hispanic American Historical Review 25:3, pp. 315-388).

6. Descripcion del audiencia de Guatimala 6. Plate mark: 19.9 x 29.9 cm. Faces p. 24. Map of part of Central America, including present-day Chiapas, southern Yucatan, Guatemala, Nicaragua, south to Costa Rica and Panama. Bornholdt, Cuatro Siglos de Expresiones Geográficas del Istmo Centroamericano Plate 27n (p. 75). Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 73-74n.

7. Descripcion de las Yndias de Mediodia. 7. Plate mark: 22.2 x 24.7 cm. Faces p. 28. Map of South America showing the papal line of demarcation, Amazon River, Rio de la Plata, and the Strait of Magellan. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 75-76n.

8. Descripcion del audiencia de Panama. 8. Plate mark: 17.8 x 22.9 cm.Precedes p. 29. Map of the audiencia of Panama, showing rivers and settlements. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 77-78n.

9. Descripcion del audiencia del Nuevo Reino 9. Plate mark: 20.8 x 21.7 cm. Faces p. 30. Map of the audiencia of the New Kingdom of Granada, present-day Colombia and Venezuela, locating rivers and settlements. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 79-80n.

10. Descripcion del audiencia del Quito 10. Plate mark: 20.6 x 24.7 cm. Faces p. 34. Map of the audiencia of Quito, present-day Ecuador with parts of Peru, Colombia, and Brazil, showing rivers and settlements. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 81-82n.

11. Descripcion del destricto del audiencia de Lima. 11. Plate mark: 20.7 x 24.7 cm. Faces p. 40. Map of the audiencia of Lima, present-day Ecuador, parts of Peru, Colombia, and Brazil, including rivers, Lake Titicaca, and settlements. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 83-84n.

12. Descripcion del audiencia de los Charcas. 12. Plate mark: 21 x 23.6 cm. Faces p. 46. Map of the audiencia of Charcas, present-day Bolivia, with some rivers and settlements. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 85-86n.

13. Descripcion de la provincia de Chile. 13. Plate mark: 16 x 30.8 cm. Faces p. 48. Map of the audiencia of Chile with some topographical details, rivers, settlements. Oriented with east at top. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 87-88n.

14. Descripcion de las indias del Poniente. 14. Plate mark: 20.5 x 28 cm. Faces p. 54. Map of the East Indies from Bengal to the Solomon Islands and north to Japan, which is shown as one main island. Although the contours of the mainland and islands (especially the Philippines and New Guinea) are somewhat sketchy, the many place names are accurately positioned. Includes a numbered key to three major island groups: the Moluccas, the Philippines, and the Ladrones. Herrera’s original map was based on the manuscript map of López de Velasco, the earliest map to name all of the major Philippine islands (ca. 1575). Hayes, Historical Atlas of the North Pacific Ocean, p. 18n (Plate 16n). Suarez, Early Mapping of Southeast Asia, pp. 172-173. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, Plate 89-90n.

     Second Spanish edition, from the original 1601 edition printed at Madrid (see herein for description of the 1601 atlas). The atlas for the 1601 edition is the third printed atlas of America, preceded only by the 1597 Wytfliet atlas (see herein) and the 1598 Geographische und historische...Landschafft America (a German edition of Acosta with maps attributed to Johannes Matalius Metellus (Jean Matal in his native French). Although Wytfliet was printed first, the maps in the 1598 work appear derived from Wytfliet (see Burden 115-122 and Arkway catalogue XV, 1980, item no. 13, also noted in Imago Mundi, 33, 1931, p. 113). The maps in the present edition were re-engraved and the geography remains the same, but there are changes, for instance, to decorative elements. The handsome, historical vignettes and portraits on the engraved titles are the same in both first and second editions, except for the imprints. The present edition is frequently described as the best edition because it was compiled under the direction of one of the most important scholars of the early Spanish Enlightenment, Andrés González de Barcia Carballido y Zúñiga (1673-1743), often referred to as the first Americanist. He augmented the text with an enormous index. There are copies of this edition dated between 1725 and 1730, but all are alike except as to the date (the work not having been completed until 1730, the publishers changing the dates as circumstances suggested). In the present copy all but two of the title dates have been altered to be 1730 (second and third decades retain 1726). See Wagner’s detailed notes in Spanish Southwest (12l, pp. 182-184) for more publishing history and the interesting information that the set originally sold for nearly twenty-two pesos. Three leaves at the front of the Descripción (“El Impresor, a los lectores, sobre los defectos de la Nueva Reimpresion de Amberes”) criticize the edition issued in 1728 by Verdussen and provide interesting map chat.

     Borba de Moraes I, pp. 401-402. JCB I (2, 1600-1658), pp. 450-451. Brunet III, col. 132. Cowan II, p. 276: “The best edition.” European Americana 1730/117 & 1730/118. Field 689: “No one has ever disputed the fidelity of old Herrera, styled the Prince of Historians, to the sources of information then accessible, and no one has ever exceeded him in careful research and interesting narration of aboriginal history. He sought and obtained many of the original documents, which the industry and spirit of the old missionaries and explorers made so numerous and voluminous. He copies, almost bodily, the MS. History of the Indies by Las Casas.... His work is a perfect treasure-house of the most valuable details, regarding the original state of the religion an manners of the Indians” (in entry 690). Glass (Bibliography), p. 625 & (Survey) #133: “Two of the illustrated title pages of parts of Herrera’s Historia have a total of 14 vignettes copied from Mexican pictorial manuscripts. Six of those on the Descripción...title page depicting Aztec gods are copied from the Codex Magliabecchiano, the Códex des Museo de América, or from a lost manuscript of the Magliabecchiano Group. Two of those on the Decada segunda title page may have the same origin. The remaining six drawings represent copies or adaptations from one or more unknown manuscripts.” Griffin 2087n: “Herrera’s classic history of the establishment of the Spanish colonies in America, 1492-1554.” Hill I, pp. 143-145: “Barcia’s edition is considered the best edition.” Hill II, #805. Howell 33:62: “Fundamental work, incorporating many printed sources, manuscripts, and, perhaps, the recollections of participants in the Conquest of the New World.” Leclerc, Bibliotheca Americana (1867) 706; (1878) 279. Lowery 105 (listing the re-engraved maps from a 1622 edition). Medina, Hispano-Americana 2580. Palau 114287-114288. Phillips, Atlases 1156. Sabin 31541, 31546. Shirley, Courtiers and Cannibals, Angels and Amazons: The Art of the Decorative Cartographic Titlepage 25n. Streit III:198, 226, 299. Vindel, Mapas de America en los Libros Españoles, p. 61n (followed by facsimile reproductions of all 14 maps). Wagner, Spanish Southwest 12k & 12l: “The maps and vignettes which appear on the title pages of this celebrated work are reproductions of those used in the first edition.... [In] the Proemio Barcia states that he intended to print two large maps, one of the Indies as they were at the time of the conquest, and the other by Delisle the younger, to show the present condition.”

     Wagner sets out the material relating to the Spanish Southwest (p. 184):

Decade VI. book I, chapters 3-7, contains an account of the wanderings of Cabeza de Vaca [first recorded journey by Europeans across North America and Texas]. The origin of the expedition and shipwreck are recounted in book IV of Decade IV. Decade VI also contains an account of the Ulloa expedition taken from Ramusio, in book IX, chapters 8-10, and an account of the Coronado expedition in chapters 11-15. Decade VII, book V, chapters 3 and 4, contains the expedition of Rodríguez Cabrillo, the first to be printed. A great deal of space is devoted to the De Soto expedition, largely taken from some independent authority, although he used both the relation of the Gentleman of Elvas and that of Garcilaso de la Vega. The relation of Marcos de Niza is to be found in Decade IV, book VII, chapters 7 and 8.

($7,500-15,000)

Sold. Hammer: $7,500.00; Price Realized: $9,187.50.

Auction 23 Abstracts

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