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Stock# 104672

With Batres's Map of Tenochtitlan

A rare educational text on the early history of Mexico City, arranged in a series of lessons followed by quiz-like questions. Unabashedly patriotic, this work was issued during the Porfiriato by an important Mexican historian noted for his reconstructive maps of Tenochtitlan, the Mexica capital. The book includes a detailed folding plate with a miniature version of Batres's important Tenochtitlan map. The remaining plates show Cuauhtemoc, Hernan Cortes, Montezuma, and other scenes from the Spanish conquest as well as Mexica culture. The appendix includes a section on human sacrifice by the Aztecs, including a plate showing the sacrificial stone (texcatl).

Leopoldo Batres (1852-1926, styled on the title page as the Mexican government's inspector and "conservador" of archeological monuments, was a foundational figure in Mexican archaeology, notable for his work as an anthropologist and archaeologist at the Museo Nacional de Antropología from 1884 to 1888. His archaeological career included significant excavations at Teotihuacan—such as the Temple of Agriculture and the Pyramid of the Moon—and later projects at notable sites like Monte Albán, Mitla, La Quemada, and Xochicalco. Despite some controversial restoration practices, notably at the Pyramid of the Sun, Batres also pioneered archaeological mapping in Mexico, creating maps that marked archaeological sites against the backdrop of contemporary railway lines. This work notably coincided with the 1910 centenary of Mexican independence and was symbolically significant in portraying Mexico as a nation rooted in both ancient tradition and modern progress. Batres, who also had a military background and studied archaeology in Paris under Ernest Théodore Hamy and Armand de Quatrefages, claimed a distinguished ancestry and was deeply influenced by his mother’s patriotism.


This work is rare in the market. Understandably few examples of this book have survived the rigors of schoolchildren handling.

Condition Description
12mo. Original pictorial wrappers. Spine chipped. Edge nicks and light staining to wrappers. Internally clean. Overall good. 38, viii pages plus 10 lithograph plates (including folding map of Tenochtitlan). Complete. Small old circular ink stamp on last page of a Mexican girls' school: "Escuela N. Primaria Elemental No. 104 Para Niñas."