Codex Borgia: A Full-Color Restoration of the Ancient Mexican Manuscript

Codex Borgia: A Full-Color Restoration of the Ancient Mexican Manuscript

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by Gisele Díaz, Alan Rodgers
     
 

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Considered by many scholars the finest extant Mexican codex and one of the most important original sources for the study of pre-Columbian religion, the Codex Borgia is a work of profound beauty, filled with strange and evocative images related to calendrical, cosmological, ritual, and divinatory matters. Generally similar to such Mixtec manuscripts as the

Overview

Considered by many scholars the finest extant Mexican codex and one of the most important original sources for the study of pre-Columbian religion, the Codex Borgia is a work of profound beauty, filled with strange and evocative images related to calendrical, cosmological, ritual, and divinatory matters. Generally similar to such Mixtec manuscripts as the Codex Nuttall, the Codex Borgia is thought to have its origin (ca. A.D. 1400) in the southern central highlands of Mexico, perhaps in Puebla or Oaxaca. It is most probably a religious document that once belonged to a temple or sacred shrine.
One use of the Codex many have been to divine the future, for it includes ritual 260 day calendars, material on aspects of the planet Venus, and a sort of numerological prognostic of the lives of wedded couples. Another section concerns various regions of the world and the supernatural characters and attributes of those regions. Also described are the characteristics of a number of deities, while still other passages relate to installation ceremonies of rulers in pre-Columbian kingdoms.
Until the publication of this Dover edition, the Codex Borgia has been largely inaccessible to the general public. The priceless original is in the Vatican Library and previous photographic facsimiles are very rare or very expensive or both. Moreover, the original Codex has been damaged over the centuries, resulting in the obscuration and loss of many images. In order to recapture the beauty and grandeur of the original, Gisele Diaz and Alan Rodgers have painstakingly restored the Codex by hand— a seven-year project — employing the most scrupulous research and restoration techniques. The result is 76 large full-color plates of vibrant, striking depictions of gods, kings, warriors, mythical creatures, and mysterious abstract designs — a vivid panorama that offers profound insights into pre-Columbian Mexican myth and ritual. Now students, anthropologists, lovers of fine art and rare books — anyone interested in the art and culture of ancient Mexico — can study the Codex Borgia in this inexpensive, accurate, well-made edition. An informative introduction by noted anthropologist Bruce E. Byland places the Codex in its historical context and helps elucidate its meaning and significance.

Editorial Reviews

Booknews
An original work by Dover. The codex is in the Vatican Library. Other reproductions are scarce. A very good (9x12") reproduction. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780486275697
Publisher:
Dover Publications
Publication date:
06/22/1993
Series:
Dover Fine Art, History of Art Series
Pages:
112
Sales rank:
425,085
Product dimensions:
8.20(w) x 10.90(h) x 0.30(d)

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Codex Borgia: A Full-Color Restoration of the Ancient Mexican Manuscript 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This Codex is wonderful at any price. The colors and reproductions are simply gorgeous and the text is very good. Present are a bewildering number of religious pictograms, soem calendric and others representing the dreamlike [nightmare] journey of the strange character, 'One-Eye.' The characters are overwhelmingly bloodsoaked and violent. There is decapitation, dismemberment and heart sacrifice. This document gives the lie to those anthropologists who claim that the mesoamerican societies are 'misunderstood' and were not human sacrificial--that tales of human sacrifice and cannibalism were tales perpetuated by Conquistadores to justify their conquest and subjugation of gentle cultures. Well, not quite. Judging by this and other codices, as well as archeologic revelations, these societies were just as bloodstained as advertised. This is not to justify the Spanish Conquest...just a simple fact. At the same time, many of the characters of this codex require major interpretation. Virtually everything is split, injured or vomits blood. Depictions of people [children?] being tortured and blinded are especially disturbing. Nevertheless, this document is well worth owning.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I dont know how i ever got along without this book....it is a must read if you are into this subject...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Where you fu<_>ck people and do pranks.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Oh gods, I'm sorry. My aunt coecered me into do my nails with her. I got away as soon as possible, but I am now unfortunately typing this with blue, sparkly nails. -__- ]]
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He followed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Herb followed. <p> [Hm...]
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read the last sentence of my post at the main res. That is all I will say.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago