Cover

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Title Page, About the Series, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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Introduction. Utopias in the New World

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pp. 1-18

From the moment the Spanish set foot in what would soon be known as the “New World,” they were seeking mineral wealth, neophyte Catholics, free labor, natural resources, and wondrous marvels. But above all, the first Europe ans to cross the Atlantic ventured to the other side of the world in search of dreams. They envisioned shining cities of gold and palaces overflowing with...

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Chapter 1. The Books of a Bishop

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pp. 19-39

By December 1767, twenty-nine-year-old Baltasar Jaime Martínez Compañón had likely grown tired of waiting to begin the journey to distant Peru and his new life in Spanish America. Earlier that year King Charles III had called him to serve the Spanish Crown and the Catholic Church as chantre, or musical director, of Lima’s metropolitan cathedral. In the meantime, he had...

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Chapter 2. Parish Priests and Useful Information

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pp. 40-64

On May 13, 1779, the new Bishop of Trujillo made his first official entrance into what was now his cathedral city. The journey from Lima would have taken him on the King’s Road, or Camino Real, the thoroughfare that hugged Peru’s Pacific Coast. Coming from the south, he would have entered the city from the New Huaman gate and preceded up what is today Francisco Pizarro...

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Chapter 3. Imagining Towns in Trujillo

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pp. 65-89

Three miles outside the city of Trujillo lies what Martínez Compañón called “the ruins of a town of the Chimú kings,” a UNESCO world heritage site today known as Chan Chan. The Chimú people who built it predominated on Peru’s north coast from the tenth century until the arrival of the Inca in the 1460s. At the height of their power, they controlled a vast territory stretching...

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Chapter 4. Improvement Through Education

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pp. 90-113

Once the Bishop and his team had departed the city of Trujillo to begin their visita in June 1782, they began working on the hundreds of watercolor images that would later be compiled into the nine volumes called Trujillo del Perú. These illustrations recalled the many places that they had visited, intricately portraying the natural and human environments of northern Peru in the eighteenth...

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Chapter 5. The Hualgayoc Silver Mine

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pp. 114-145

Situated at 13,000 feet above sea level, Trujillo’s great silver mines at Cajamarca stood at the same elevation as the distant snowy land of Tibet that Jesuit scientist Athanasius Kircher had written about in his epic China Ilustrata. But this was no fantastical kingdom—the disheveled mining camp of Micuypampa, the gateway to the Hualgayoc silver mine of Cajamarca, was...

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Chapter 6. Local Botany: The Products of Utopia

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pp. 146-179

As the Bishop and his team made the final preparations for their departure to Bogotá, where he would assume his new post, we might imagine him surrounded by twenty-four large wooden crates, each numbered and marked with the letters MD, signifying their final destination of Madrid. While he prepared their contents to journey to Spain alongside Peru’s outgoing Viceroy...

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Chapter 7. The Legacy of Martínez Compañón

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pp. 180-198

The end of this story begins on November 27, 1797, at the San Francisco Church in Bogotá. It was the morning of the final Mass in celebration of the twenty-seventh Bishop of Trujillo and the twenty-eighth Archbishop of Bogotá, Baltasar Jaime Martínez Compañón. His body had been interred in the cathedral three months earlier, and the city had already held four major...

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Conclusion. Martínez Compañón’s Native Utopia

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pp. 199-204

In 1516, an English lawyer named Thomas More penned a canonical literary work that, almost half a millennium later, would be declared by a professor at Paris’s Sorbonne to be one of the most seminal publications in the history of the world. In that 2011 editorial in the New York Times, Yves Charles Zarka referred to Utopia as a book that “inaugurated” the modern era, the time in...

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Afterword

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pp. 205-206

To conclude our story, perhaps we can imagine a chilly afternoon in 1803 made much colder by the granite walls of the Escorial palace nestled in the gently rolling hills outside Madrid. This was the day that the wooden crates from Peru finally arrived at their destination—the palace library.1 Whoever opened the crates would have found nine books, their pages sewn with red...

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Sources and Methods

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pp. 207-226

One afternoon at the National Archive of Colombia in Bogotá, a fellow researcher asked me what I was working on. “Bishop Martínez Compañón of Trujillo, Peru,” I told him. He thought for a minute and then replied that the biggest challenge I would face in this project would be the problem of too much information. “His documents are everywhere. Here, Trujillo, Lima,” he...

Appendix 1. Ecclesiastical Questionnaire Sent to Priests Prior to the Visita Party’s Arrival

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pp. 227-228

Appendix 2. Natural History Questionnaire Sent to Priests Prior to the Visita Party’s Arrival

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pp. 229-232

Archives and Special Collections Consulted

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pp. 233-234

Notes

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pp. 235-276

Index

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pp. 277-284

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Acknowledgments

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pp. 285-287

The final years of writing this book were generously funded by two separate yearlong fellowships: one from the American Council of Learned Societies; and one from the Huntington Library and the Dibner program in the History of Science. My research in Colombia and a portion of my research in Peru were funded by a Fulbright fellowship. I am thankful for further funding...

Image Plates

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