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Sale 2486 Lot 447
(MEXICAN IMPRINT--1577.) Anunciación, Juan de la. Sermonario en lengua mexicana. Woodcut portrait of Saint Augustine on title page. , 267 leaves (erratically paginated). 3 parts in one volume. 4to, contemporary calf, worn; lacking leaves Aa1 and *1 (the second and third title pages), moderate dampstaining and worming; early inscriptions on flyleaves and title page. Mexico: Antonio Ricardo, 1577
Estimate $30,000 - 40,000
first edition of the first book of sermons in nahuatl, intended to be preached during Mass on Sundays and feast days over the course of a year. In this early period, the Nahua audience was expected to have very limited exposure to old world customs and lore. One of the more curious examples addresses the circumcision of Jesus: "Yn o iuh quiz chicueilhuitl, ynic tequililoz achitzin yoquichnacayotzin in piltzintli niman yc tocayotiloc initocatzin Iesus": "When the 8th day had come, a little piece of the little child's precious man flesh would be cut off, and with that he would then be given the name Jesus" (leaf 16r). Also included is a calendar and list of saint's days, with a brief hagiography of each saint, and a catechism.
This volume was issued in three parts. The second had a half-title page in Nahuatl reading "Nican ompehua yn temachtilli, ynitechpovi sanctoral," and the third had a full title page reading "Cathecismo en lengua mexicana y espanola"; both additional title pages have been removed. Most of the volume is printed in Nahuatl in two columns, while most of the Cathecismo is printed in parallel columns of Nahuatl and Spanish. "A volume of extreme rarity and value"--Sabin 36798 (incorrect collation). Icazbalceta 73; Medina, Mexico I:78; Palau 13496; Pilling 123-4. None others have been traced at auction since Puttick & Simpson's Bibliotheca Mejicana sale, 1 June 1869, lot 84.