KING, Edward, Viscount Kingsborough (1795-1837). Antiquities of Mexico: comprising fac-similes of ancient Mexican paintings and hieroglyphics . . . together with the monuments of New Spain, by M. Dupaix . . . the drawings on stone by A. Aglio. London: Robert Havell, Colnaghi Son and Co. [vols. I-V and VII], Augustine Aglio [vol. VI], and Henry G. Bohn [vols. VIII-IX], 1831-1848 [vol. VI 1830].

Details
KING, Edward, Viscount Kingsborough (1795-1837). Antiquities of Mexico: comprising fac-similes of ancient Mexican paintings and hieroglyphics . . . together with the monuments of New Spain, by M. Dupaix . . . the drawings on stone by A. Aglio. London: Robert Havell, Colnaghi Son and Co. [vols. I-V and VII], Augustine Aglio [vol. VI], and Henry G. Bohn [vols. VIII-IX], 1831-1848 [vol. VI 1830].

9 volumes, large 2° (535 x 360mm). Half-titles to the first seven volumes, 742 plates mostly by Augustine Aglio, including 588 hand-coloured lithographic plates, two folding, 148 uncoloured lithographic plates, 130 on india-paper mounted, 4 double-page, 6 aquatint plates, one folding, 2 lithographic tables, tissue plate guards inserted to volumes III and IV. (Lacking the 4 pp. dedication by Aglio bound in volume V, occasional light spotting, mainly to margins and endpapers.) Contemporary crimson morocco, gilt, covers with blind-tooled fillet borders, gilt rose and leaf cornerpieces, spines in six compartments, raised double bands and gilt rules, lettered in two, gilt turn-ins, g.e., by J. Wright.

A FINE COLOURED COPY OF THIS MONUMENTAL WORK ON MEXICAN ANTIQUITIES. The story of the publication of this magnificent work is a sad tale; Viscount Kingsborough first became acquainted with Mexican manuscripts while at Oxford, where he saw an example in the Bodleian Library. From this first encounter he was determined to study these manuscripts and with the support and encouragement of Sir Thomas Phillipps, many of whose manuscripts are described, he set about the task. He employed Augustine Aglio, a painter from Italy, to visit Rome, Vienna, Dresden and other national and Royal libraries throughout Europe in search of Mexican manuscripts, which Aglio sketched and later lithographed for publication. The plates also include Dupaix's Monuments of New Spain taken from the original drawings of Castaneda, and sculpture from various collections. The costs of this immense venture are said to have been more than (32,000 and indirectly caused his death. In 1837 he was arrested in Dublin for a debt to a paper manufacturer, and while in prison he contracted typhus and died a few days later. Several months later his father, the Earl of Kingston, died, and Kingsborough would then have inherited both title and estates. The work was clearly intended to be in seven volumes, as stated on the title of volume VII. After Kingsborough's death, Bohn published volumes VIII and IX as a supplement based on the author's notes and presumably using the surviving paper stocks. The first three volumes contain most of the lithographic plates, the other four the text. The seventh volume has Bernardino de Suhagua's Historia universal de las cosas de Nueva España. At what date Bohn obtained the stock of printed copies of the seven-volume work is uncertain, but with the completion of the final two volumes in 1848, Bohn proudly announced the sale of the full 9 volumes, uncoloured originally (140 now (35, coloured copies originally (200 now (63. Bohn also sold the extra two volumes separately at 12 guineas. An earlier issue of the titles of volumes I-VII is known, dated 1830 and giving Aglio as the publisher. Clearly hoping to help the sale, he tranferred the stock to Havell and Colnaghi the following year, printing new title-pages in the present set, where only volume VI retains the original title.

Lipperheide Md11; Lowndes p.1276; Palau 128006; Sabin 37800; Brunet III, 663, "ouvrage de la plus grand magnificence". (9)
;

More from Books

View All
View All