Diaz, Bernal: The Conquest of New Spain.

Diaz, Bernal - The Conquest of New Spain. Folio Society, 1975, 2nd impression.

The overthrow of Montezuma's Aztec empire by a small company of adventurers led by Hernando Cortes, and inspired equally by a high religious sense of mission and by a crude greed for gold, remains one of the world's most extraordinary achievements. Bernal Diaz fought with Cortes throughout the entire campaign: his reward, rather than gold, was land of dubious quality. He started this unique masterpiece of graphic reporting when over seventy, to set the record straight, and to correct a profusion of untruths broadcast by other survivors; and he died a few years later as poor as he had lived. He was privileged to have been present at some of the most exciting events in recorded history, and his narrative covers them all, from first-hand observation of Cortes' first sight of Montezuma's fabulous city to its siege and capture, and Montezuma's dignified yet pathetic death. His accuracy is today freely acknowledged: and J. M. Cohen has here made a magnificent translation of 'this true story, which is a most remarkable one, as my readers will presently see'. (Folio Society).

10" x 6ΒΌ", 352pp plus 16 plates, lime-green buckram, elaborate gold blocked design on front-board and spine, gold blocked spine lettering, hardback. Map endpapers (different). Illustrated with contemporary material in monochrome; colour frontispiece.

Spine sunned; otherwise fine, probably unread; complete with very good plus (slight sunning), sound, slip-case.


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