1790 · Mexico
Medical doctor, professor of mathematics, author, and founder of the first medical journal published in the New World (Mercurio volante), Bartolache was one of New Spain's memorable and colorful "characters" during the Age of Enlightenment. He was an eccentric and volatile personality in the academic, medical, cultural, and social life of Mexico City during the last third of the 18th century.
In this treatise Bartolache (1739–90) presents quite possibly the first historiographical study of the Virgin of Guadalupe and the literature about her. => In all, Bartolache details and discusses 19 books and pamphlets. Additionally, this volume contains an excellent engraving of the Virgin, designed by Jose Guerrero and engraved by Tomas Suria. The last text pages discuss this image of the Virgin as a physical object, as a piece of art: the structure supporting her, the proportions of the face and body, the "paint," and so on. The final six leaves contain a list of subscribers, which is rather unusual in Mexican books, and there are two other, unsigned, related engravings.
Medina, Mexico, 7957; Grajales & Burrus, Bibliografia guadalupana, 273; Palau 25095; Maggs, Bibl. Amer., I, 1141, and VI, 5899; Beristain, I, 141; Puttick & Simpson, Bibliotheca Mejicana, 167; Sutro, p. 33. Contemporary acid-stained sheep (Valenciana style) with gilt spine, marbled endpapers and all edges red; fore-edge of rear cover gnawed upon by a rodent, but not too seriously. => A clean, attractive copy of a book both widely and deeply interesting. (Inventory #: 36633)