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October 26, 2007

Copper Engraving of Our Lady of Guadalupe

250. [VIRGIN OF GUADALUPE]. MONTÚFAR, Al[onso] de. [Caption title and first few lines of text] Nos Don Fr. Alonso de Montúfar. Por la Miseración divina, Arzobispo de México, y del Consejo de su Magestad: A los muy Reverendos y Magnificos Dean y Cabildo de Nuestra Santa Iglesia Catedral.... [at p. 23] Dada en México á dies y seis dias del mes de enero de mil quinientos y setenta años. [colophon] Se volvió á imprimir por orden del Illmô. y V. Sr. Abad y Cabildo de la Insigne y Real Colegiata de Santa Maria de Guadalupe. Año de 1803. Mexico, 1803. 24 pp., recto of first leaf with copper engraving of the Virgin of Guadalupe: [at top in banner] Mea est fortitudo [below in image] Per Me Reges Regnant. 12mo (14.6 x 10 cm), stitched. Light wear and dust soiling to front and back leaves, lower blank corner of first few leaves slightly dog-eared, a very good copy with a fine, strong impression of the beautiful engraving.

            Third edition. Mathes, Bibliotheca Novohispana Guadalupana, p. 68. Mathes, Illustration in Colonial Mexico: Woodcuts and Copper Engravings in New Spain, 1539-1821 #9609.

Medina 9609.  The text does not relate to the Virgin of Guadalupe but rather to Montúfar’s promulgation of rules and regulations about conduct expected of priests and participants during church services. As these new regulations make clear, there must have been considerable confusion and disorder during regular services, with people talking, communicating by sign languages, and in general behaving in indecorous ways. The regulations also imply that many church officials were perhaps ill-equipped for their offices. One regulation, for example, states that all prebendaries must know how to sing.

            Montúfar (1498-1573), the second archbishop of Mexico, was particularly known for his devotion to his Native American charges. He died universally mourned in Mexico. See: Alberto María Carreno, “Don Fray Alonso de Montúfar, Second Archbishop of Mexico, and the Devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe” in The Americas, Vol. 2, No. 3. (January, 1946), pp. 280-295.

            The lovely, skillfully executed engraving is not clearly attributed, although the letter “M” (e.g., Antonio Onofre Morales) can be faintly seen at lower left of the image. ($250-500)

Sold. Hammer: $250.00; Price Realized: $293.75

Auction 21 Abstracts

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