Carnaval de Tambobamba

Carnaval de Tambobamba

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Pedro Cieza de León

Pedro Cieza de León (Llerena, Spain c.1520 ---Seville, Spain 1554) was a Spanish conquistador and chronicler ofPeru. He is known primarily for his history and description of Peru, Crónicas del Perú. He wrote this book in four parts, but only the first was published during his lifetime; the remaining sections were not published until the 19th and 20th centuries.

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[edit]Early life

Cieza de León was likely born in 1520 in Llerena, a town in southeastern Extremadura. Little is known of his early life; given the fact that he left home at age thirteen, it is doubtful that Cieza de León received more than a rudimentary education at a local parish school. His father, Lope de León, was a shopkeeper in the town, and his mother, Leonor de Cazalla, was a native of Llerena, and there is scant documentary evidence of the young Cieza de León’s childhood.[1]

[edit]In South America

Cieza participated in various expeditions and helped found a number of cities. These activities include the following:

  • 1536 and 1537: Expedition to San Sebastián de Buenavista and to Urute with Alonso de Cáceres.
  • 1539: Foundation of San Ana de los Caballeros (Colombia), with Jorge Robledo.
  • 1540: Foundation of Cartago (Colombia).
  • 1541: Foundation of Antioquía (Colombia).
  • He took possession of an encomienda in Cartagena of Indies, which he granted toSebastián de Belalcázar.
  • 1547: Cieza de León participated in missions headed by Pedro de la Gasca in support of the royalist campaign against Gonzalo Pizarro's rebellion.
  • 1548: He reached the "City of Kings" (present-day Lima), where he started his career as a writer and official chronicler of the New World. During the following two years he traveled across the Peruvian territory, collecting interesting information he would later use to develop his works.

[edit]Later life and the fate of his writings

Cieza returned to Seville, Spain, in 1551 and married a woman named Isabel López de Abreu.[2] In this city he published, in 1553, the first part of the chronicles of Peru (Primera Parte). He died the following year, leaving the rest of his work unpublished. His Second Part of Chronicles of Peru, describing the Incas, was translated by Clements Markham and published in 1871. In 1909, the fourth part of his chronicle, focusing on the civil wars among the Spanish conquerors was published under the title Third Book of the Peruvian Civil Wars. The third part of Cieza de León's Crónicas del Perú, which examined the discovery and conquest of Peru by the Spaniards, was considered by historians to be lost. The document eventually turned up in a Vatican library, and historian Francesca Cantù published a Spanish version of the text in 1979.[3]

[edit]Significance

Though his works are historical and narrate the events of the Spanish conquest of Peru and the civil wars among the Spaniards, much of their importance lies in his detailed descriptions of geography, ethnography, flora and fauna. He was the first European to describe some native Peruvian animal species and vegetables.

[edit]Bibliography

  • Cieza de León, Pedro de. The Second Part of the Chronicle of Peru, translated by Clements R. Markham. London: Hakluyt Society, 1883. (reissued by Cambridge University Press, 2010. ISBN 9781108011617)
  • Cieza de León, Pedro de. The Travels of Pedro de Cieza de León, AD 1532-50, Contained in the First Part of His Chronicle of Peru, translated by Clements R. Markham. London: Hakluyt Society, 1883. (reissued by Cambridge University Press, 2010. ISBN 9781108013345)
  • Cieza de León, Pedro de. The War of Las Salinas, translated by Clements R. Markham.London: Hakluyt Society, 1923 (1883).
  • Cieza de León, Pedro de. The War of Quito, translated by Clements R. Markham.London: Hakluyt Society, 1913 (1883).
  • Cieza de León, Pedro de. The War of Chupas, translated by Clements R. Markham.London: Hakluyt Society, 1917 (1883).
  • Cieza de León, Pedro de. The Incas of Pedro de Cieza de León, translated by Harriet de Onis. Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press, 1959.
  • Cieza de León, Pedro de. The Discovery and Conquest of Peru: Chronicles of the New World Encounter, edited and translated by Alexandra Parma Cook and Noble David Cook. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998.

[edit]Notes

  1. ^ Cook, Noble David. Introduction to 1998 translation of The Discovery and Conquest of Peru: Chronicles of the New World Encounter, edited and translated by Alexandra Parma Cook and Noble David Cook. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998, p. 5.
  2. ^ Cook, Noble David. Introduction to 1998 translation of The Discovery and Conquest of Peru: Chronicles of the New World Encounter, edited and translated by Alexandra Parma Cook and Noble David Cook. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998, p. 16-18.
  3. ^ Cook, Noble David. Introduction to 1998 translation of The Discovery and Conquest of Peru: Chronicles of the New World Encounter, edited and translated by Alexandra Parma Cook and Noble David Cook. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1998, p. 25-26.

[edit]External links

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