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America: being an accurate description of the New World, 1671

Authors: Arnoldus Montanus, John Ogilby

With this English title America: being an accurate description of the New World, 1671: containing the origin of the inhabitants; the remarkable voyages thither: the conquest of the vast empires of Mexico and Peru, their ancient and later vvars. With their several plantations, many, and rich islands; their cities, fortresses, towns, temples, mountains, and rivers: their habits, customs, manners, and religions; their peculiar plants, beasts, birds, and serpents we knos the work of the Dutch Arnoldus Montanus, whose original title is s De nieuwe en onbekende weereld, of, Beschryving van America en ‘t zuid-land: vervaetende d’oorsprong der Americaenen en zuid-landers, gedenkwaerdige togten derwaerds, gelegendheid der vaste kusten, eilanden, steden, sterkten, dorpen, tempels, bergen, fonteinen, stroomen, huisen, de natuur van beesten, boomen, planten en vreemde gewasschen, Gods-dienst en zeden, wonderlijke voorvallen, vereeuwde en nieuwe oorlogen: verciert met af-beeldsels na ‘t leven in America gemaekt.


The English version belongs to the Scottish John Ogilby, but both, published on 1671, share the fantastic engravings of Jacob Van Meurs. Although Montanus’s work is imprecise and fanciful, it gathers a lot of information from previous Hispanic sources, as well as a large number of Dutch maps. Thanks to the English version, the work had an important readership throughout the eighteenth century. The imaginary of America that is shown in these works represents the consolidation of the iconographic models initiated at the end of the XVI century. This volume is of great importance for the studies of viceregal America because it describes both the principal viceroyalties, New Spain and Peru, and because it also brings important chorographic descriptions of its principal ports and dependencies, as well as of the most notable cities: Cuzco and Potosí, for example.

To consult the version of Montanus only have to select the supra-scripted title of the same.