Guide To Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the Huntington Library

HM 177

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Santo Domingo and
Spain, 1539-48
Vol. 1, ff. 1-71v: [Book VI:] Este es el libro que Capitan Gonzalo Fernandez Fiço de la Natural y General Hystoria de las Indias…[f. 1, Prologue:] Poco tiene que hazer…[f. 2v, Text:] Capitulo primero del libro…Bivian los Indios del esta ysla de hayti…no deve ser sin misterio y secreto de la natura el qual yo no alcanço. Fin del presente libro. Vol. 2, ff. 11-117: [Books IV, VII, IX, XI, XXXII, and XXXVII:] Libro de la natural y general Hystoria de las Indias…[f. 11, Prologue:] Pues que es ya tiempo se de conclusion A las cosas de la governacion…[f. 11v, Text:] Capitulo primero…Dixosse en el libro procedente…Y esto baste quanto a este breve libro del numero xxxvi hasta que el tiempo nos avise de otras cosas que en el se acresçienten. [f. 117v, blank]
J. Amador de los Ríos, ed., Historia general y natural de las Indias de Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo y Valdés (Madrid 1851; repr. J. Pérez de Tudela Bueso, Madrid 1959).
Paper (2 types of Main, similar to Briquet 10718 and 11244), vol. 1: ff. i (modern) + 71 + ii (1 contemporary 1 modern); vol. 2: ff. i (contemporary) + 107 + i (contemporary); the modern foliation in vol. 2 runs 11-117 since ff. 1-10, formerly bound with this volume, were removed in 1975 and catalogued as HM 37542. 290 × 210 (220-232 × 105-110) mm. Vol. 1: 1-512 612(-12); vol. 2: 112 212(-11, 12) 312 422(-22) 54 6-712 812(plus bifolium between 1 and 2) 910; the lower margins of the last 8 leaves are completely cut away, and the leaves of quires 4 and 5, some now attached to stubs, have been separated and rearranged, as detailed in the signature description below. Catchwords enclosed in brown ink scrolls in the middle or right lower margins. Leaf signatures in roman numerals in the middle of the lower margin; quire and leaf signatures in a later hand in letters (vol. 1: n-s; vol. 2: a-b, A-B, a, a, not visible on quires 7-9) and arabic numerals, frequently including the seventh leaf of a quire, in the right lower margin close under the text. 32-38 long lines; vertical bounding lines ruled in dry point. Written in the hand of the author. Illustrated with 24 pen and ink drawings by the author, a few shaded in black lead. Marginal notes in 3 hands: i, the author’s corrections, additions and directions to the printer; ii, note on f. 49 of vol. 1 made after 1580; iii, pencilled notes in English in vol. 2 with the book numbers, probably made by a bookseller. Vol. 1 bound, s. XXin, in quarter brown suede over marbled boards. Vol. 2 bound, s. XVII, in brown calf, gold tooled; remains of 2 fore edge ties; rebacked, original spine laid down; later marbled endpapers; a remboitage. Written probably in Santo Domingo between 1539-46 and completed in Spain in 1546-48: the dates given in the text are March 1539, in Book IV, chap. 7 and 1548 in the prologue of Book VI. On the first leaf of most books a small section has been clipped out, possibly to remove some identifying marks, and replaced with matching paper on which the original text was recopied by tracing. An early Huntington Library report mentions the presence of the bookplate of Don José Colón of Cáceres on the first page of Vol. 2 (Book IV); it is no longer in the book. The back pastedown bears a pencilled bookseller’s notation “AY 81.” Purchased from Maggs by Henry E. Huntington, 25 February 1926. Bibliography: De Ricci, 61-62. P. Hulton and D. B. Quinn, The American Drawings of John White, 1577-1590 (London 1964) 1:31-32. D. B. Quinn, “New Geographical Horizons: Literature,” in First Images of America, ed. F. Chiappelli (Berkeley 1976) 2:652 and 658. W. C. Sturtevant, “First Visual Images of Native America,” in First Images of America, 1:447-48, with reproduction of HM 177, vol. 1, ff. 4 and 9 in 1:425-26.
C. M. Briquet, Les Filigranes: dictionnaire historique des marques du papier…1282 jusqu’à 1600, facs. of the 1907 edition with supplementary material, ed. A. Stevenson (Amsterdam 1968)
De Ricci
S. De Ricci, with the assistance of W. H. Wilson, Census of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the United States and Canada (New York 1935-37; index 1940)

C. W. Dutschke with the assistance of R. H. Rouse et al., Guide to Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the Huntington Library (San Marino, 1989). Copyright 1989.
Henry E. Huntington Library and Art Gallery, San Marino, California.
Electronic version encoded by Sharon K, Goetz, 2003.
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