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Rare Books Virtual Lecture — What You See With Your Eyes

image from Mesoamerican manuscript“Do not believe more than what you see with your eyes.” — Montezuma to Cortés, according to Cortés, 1519

Rare Books invites you to view its most recent virtual lecture, “What You See With Your Eyes.”

Why are texts written? and for whom? Why are texts recorded onto stable materials with the intent of a lasting existence? By studying the form, content, and style of the written record we can answer questions such these.

Explore early books in Nahuatl and Spanish and develop a sense of studying past texts in their physical form as a way to enhance textual analysis.

From Mesoamerican manuscripts

section from Codex Laud

to sixteenth-century Spanish attempts to learn and understand Nahuatl

to seventeenth and eighteenth century Spanish histories, maps, and legal documents

to nineteenth century government proclamations

title-page of Tratado

historical texts in their physical form gives us a strong, visceral sense of the who, what, when, where, and why of any written document.



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