History of the foundation of Lima, Bernabé Cobo

The manuscript of the History of the Foundation of Lima is kept in the Biblioteca Colombina (Colombina Library) in Seville. This manuscript was dated 24 January 1639 in Mexico and was published more than 230 years afterwards in 1882 by Manuel González de la Rosa after consulting it. This edition brings a useful biography of this Jesuit born in Lopera as well as some notes of González de la Rosa, distinguished Peruvian historian

Historia de la fundación de Lima (History of the foundation of Lima) is a chronicle that describes the city of Lima, and, at the same time places Lima symbolically within the imperial vision of the world. Lima is shown as an empire, head of the kingdom, an economic emporium and, of course, a sacred space: a special relevance in the chronicle is the description of convents, small cities within city. The book does not have anecdotal episodes, but it does share testimonies of eyewitnesses of the first century of the Corte de Nueva Castilla, as it was then called, as well as cites information of official documentation, now lost.

The city histories, intentionally or not, follow models and narrative strategies typical of the chorography. For this reason the concept of city refers both to the physical space as to the people who live there: that is the extended meaning of the Latin civitas voice. The use of information obtained from eyewitnesses makes this work an imperative testimony to learn about the transition of the sixteenth to seventeenth century in the Viceroyalty of Peru.


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