Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Letters from Mexico” as Want to Read:
Letters from Mexico
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Letters from Mexico

by
3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  173 ratings  ·  16 reviews
Written over a seven-year period to Charles V of Spain, Hernan Cortes' letters provide a narrative account of the conquest of Mexico from the founding of the coastal town of Veracruz until Cortes's journey to Honduras in 1525.
Paperback, 640 pages
Published August 11th 2001 by Yale University Press (first published 1555)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Letters from Mexico, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Letters from Mexico

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 407)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
David
I could as easily give this one star. Cortez's account of his conquest of the Aztec empire is on the one hand utterly horrifying--it's as if the influenza virus were writing its life story. On the other hand, it's a riveting, nail-biting work of what amounts to science fiction, in the old Edgar Rice Burroughs vein. A small band of voyagers lands on an alien planet and takes over. Unique, anyway.
Maximiliano
Una verdadera aventura épica...
Yann
Hernan Cortes est le conquistador qui a assujetti le Mexique à la couronne d'Espagne. Arrivé avec une poignée d'homme sur le continent, forcé d'aller toujours plus avant, pressé par les inimitiés de certains compatriotes restés à Cuba, il parvient à bousculer l'empire Aztèque, appuyé par leurs anciens vassaux lesquels étaient lassés de porter le joug d'une théocratie cruelle. Le comportement velléitaire de Moctezuma, les prophéties annonçant le retour des dieux, l'avance technologique, tout cons ...more
Dani
Es una contradicción para mí, por una parte me aburrió y por otra me pareció fascinante leerlo.
Finalmente fue una tarea en la universidad, pero no me arrepiento de haberlo leído.
Rick Perez
Oct 19, 2009 Rick Perez rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Rick by: found on a bookshelf in a used bookstore
This was a fascinating read, filled with tales of travel, politics, and war. Cortez talks not only of the difficulty in getting to America, but also of the Aztec people, and beauty of the capital, as well as his bloody struggle to gain control of the native empire. These five letters demonstrate, albeit through a filtered and highly manipulated lens, the beginnings of Colonial Latin America, and the creation of Mestizaje.
For anyone interested in the history of Mexico, Latin America, or the colon
...more
Isidore
Hernan Cortes was not the sort of man you'd want to invite over for dinner. Sure, he'd eat your food, but he'd also rape your wife and burn your house down. In his own words he paints a bestial picture of himself as the architect of the destruction of a civilization.

Yet he was a product of his own culture and time. No doubt another conquistador would have attempted the plunder of the Americas if Cortes had never been born or had developed a conscience like Cabeza De Vaca.
Kafkasfriend
Whatever you read elsewhere the words of a participant who admits to destroying towns and entire populations 'until our arms ached' is a horrifying read. The lack of details adds to the callousness of the beginning of the European destruction of the Americas.One 3 books out of a library of at least tens of thousands survived. The Europeans even banned weaving because it could be used to convey messages and histories.
Wendy
May 12, 2008 Wendy rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all travel writers
Shelves: journals, mexico
What a PR master Hernan Cortes was. So much contemporary travel writing simply reenacts the conquest and the reactions of the conquistadors. If you're going to do that, might as well go back to the source. This is an excellent translation, with good explanatory notes and bibliography.
Madelyn
a highly entertaining, disturbing read. for some reason i regard this to be perhaps the most accurate record of the voyages into hispania, particularly because cortes is so proud of his crimes...
Brad
Sep 15, 2007 Brad rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone
What an eye-opener! This is a fantastic history written by Cortes himself! Long but worth it.
Brien
Read it as an undergrad for class. Interesting enough, but I wouldn't pick it up again.
Sharon
Aug 07, 2011 Sharon marked it as to-read
Shelves: nonfiction
My interest in this book comes from reading Barbara Kingsolver's book - The Lacuna.
Rich
This is one of the best source documents I have ever read.
Invisiblylonely
I read the second "Carta de Relacion", not all of them.
Eugenio
Genocide. Best day of my life.
Ned
May 30, 2013 Ned rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: current
the notes here are fantastic
Scott Campbell
Scott Campbell marked it as to-read
Nov 16, 2014
Kirk Gray
Kirk Gray marked it as to-read
Nov 10, 2014
Nicholas Cox
Nicholas Cox marked it as to-read
Nov 08, 2014
Suvi Ahonen
Suvi Ahonen marked it as to-read
Nov 05, 2014
Dimitris Chionas Chionas
Dimitris Chionas Chionas marked it as to-read
Nov 05, 2014
Anton
Anton added it
Nov 02, 2014
Carlos De la mora
Carlos De la mora marked it as to-read
Oct 13, 2014
John Gotay
John Gotay marked it as to-read
Oct 06, 2014
Joe
Joe marked it as to-read
Oct 03, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 13 14 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Adventures in the Unknown Interior of America
  • The Conquest of New Spain
  • The Four Voyages: Being His Own Log-Book, Letters and Dispatches with Connecting Narratives
  • Conquest: Montezuma, Cortes and the Fall of Old Mexico
  • A Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies
  • سفرنامه ماژلان
  • The Broken Spears: The Aztec Account of the Conquest of Mexico
  • Imperial Spain, 1469-1716
  • The Penguin History of Latin America
  • Concierto barroco (Biblioteca Juvenil)
  • The Aztecs
  • Seven Myths of the Spanish Conquest
  • History of the Conquest of Mexico
  • El perseguidor
  • Here's to You, Jesusa!
  • La Controverse de Valladolid
  • Amadis of Gaul
  • Shadow Without a Name: A Novel
Letters of Cortes (Volume 2); The Five Letters of Relation from Fernando Cortes to the Emperor Charles V. Fernando Cortes: His Five Letters of Relation to the Emperor Charles V 1519-1526 V1 O Fim de Montezuma Kirjeitä kuninkaalle Cartas de relación

Share This Book