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Yucatan Before and After the Conquest

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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  67 ratings  ·  11 reviews
Only significant account done of Yucatan in post-Conquest era. Describes geography and natural history of the peninsula, gives brief history of Mayan life, discusses Spanish conquest and its effects, and provides a long summary of Maya civilization. Translator William Gates has added appendices, 4 maps, and over 120 illustrations.
Paperback, 185 pages
Published May 16th 2012 by Dover Publications (NYC) (first published 1566)
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Kyle
Apr 30, 2013 Kyle rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People interested in Mesoamerica or the Maya
Recommended to Kyle by: School
The stars I've given this 'book' are meaningless. You might as well think of them as not even being there (In fact I'll probably go back and make it a starless rating).

This "review" is mostly a short lesson, rather than a review, for those of who who might be interested in post-contact Mesoamerica. If you don't give a crap about Mesoamerica, let alone post-contact, then you might not want to read any further.

Diego De Landa is a mixed bag, and he left us a mixed legacy. De Landa was a Spanish Bi
...more
Georgene
Dec 22, 2014 Georgene rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Georgene by: Philip Wickstrand
Shelves: history
An interesting AND boring bit of history concerning the subjugation of the Mayan peoples of the Yucatan in the 1500's. From anthropological and sociological points of view, this is an interesting book. However, it was quite a slog to get through.

In the mid-1500's, Friar Diego de Landa was called back to the King of Spain's court to justify his horrific treatment of the native peoples of the Yucatan. When considering how non-religious Spaniards treated the peoples of the New World, de Landa's tre
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Ilya
In 1562, Friar Diego de Landa of Yucatan discovered that some of the Indians who had supposedly been converted to Christianity some 20 years before did, in fact, worship their old "idols". He conducted an inquiry in the best traditions of the Spanish Inquisition, torturing some 4500 Indians and causing the deaths of 158, burned 5000 "idols" and 27 hieroglyphic books. The Church was alarmed that Landa had overstepped the boundaries of his authority, and recalled him to Spain to stand trial before ...more
Daniel L.
Mayan Culture Preserved by One Who Sought Its Destruction

While driving on the lonely highway toward the city of Valladolid, in the center of Mexico's Yucatan peninsula, on the horizon loomed a surreal shadow. I tried to imagine what this palatial structure could be. Upon arriving at the charming colonial city, I came upon a magnificent Spanish colonial monastary. What was amazing was that it was built upon the base of a pyramid razed by the Spanish conquistadores, who reused the stones for their
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Ryan
The view of a culture from the conqueror's unfavorable and uncomprehending (is that a word?) perspective. Not among the greats of old school travel lit ... I'd prefer something like Ibn Batutta's travels, Marco Polo's lies, travels of John Mandeville (more lies), Sir Richard Burton, Freya Stark's Valleys of the Assassins, etc.
Barbarajean
I'm sure translating a text from the 16th century is not an easy task, however, the clunky translation was a bit confusing and sometimes even comical. I guess you take what you can get since Landa destroyed most of Mayan texts and tablets.
Mamakass
I stopped reading this because I found the language a little more effort than I cared to put into it, and I had already read so much ABOUT this book, that reading it itself seemed almost redundant.
Rana Sinha
The only known Western account of Maya civilisation, ironically by the priest instrumental in destroying an entire civilisation - this is what makes this book fascinating!
Margaret
the writing is not very good but the information is. i will assume it is a top-notch translation because the foreword tells me so.
Naomi Moore
A little dry but very informative. Not for the faint of heart.
Clark S
An eyewitness account of the Spanish conquest of the Maya.
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