Monday, August 1, 2011

Lima Book Fair

Last night, after resting up a bit after our return yesterday afternoon from our trip to Arequipa (more on that later), Liz and I walked to the Lima International Book Fair.  The fair -which this year is in its 16th yearly "edition"- has been held for the past couple of years in the Los Proceres park (also known by its old name of Mata Mula) here in Jesus Maria.

As always, the book fair was a great draw, pulling in enough booksellers and publishers to fill almost 140 stands, including representations from Venezuela, Argentina, Ecuador, Turkey, and China.  Even late on a Sunday night it was packed with people and the line of parked cars stretched for a couple blocks from the event site.

I got some nice books there, but I am most pleased with a facsimile edition of Garcilazo de la Vega's 1609 treatise, Primera Parte de los Comentarios Reales, que tratan del origen de los Yncas, reyes que fueron del Peru, de su idolatria, leyes, y govierno en paz y en guerra: de sus vidas y conquistas, y de todo lo que fue aquel Imperio y su Republica, antes que los Españoles passaran a el.  That book, known in English as the Royal Commentaries, was a landmark history and description of Inca Peru as it was the first written by a descendant of the subject of the book - Garcilazo was descendant of Inca emperor Tupac Yupanqui.   Lima's Universidad del Pacifico decided to mark it's 40th year of publishing by printing the full-size facsimile edition of the book.

An original copy of the Comentarios Reales displayed in Garcilazo's childhood home in Cusco

On the way home Liz and I mused about the success of the book fair, which draws people in droves, day after day over almost two weeks, and hat makes such an event possible here, as contrasted to the USA where book fairs are smaller and shorter events, with far fewer publishers represented.

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