IDENTIFICATION OF COLORANTS ON MAPS FROM THE EARLY COLONIAL PERIOD OF NEW SPAIN (MEXICO)
MARY ELIZABETH HAUDE
ABSTRACT—Six hand-drawn maps from the Benson Latin American Collection at the University of Texas at Austin underwent treatment at the university's Preservation and Conservation Studies laboratories in the spring of 1996. These objects, from a group of maps and manuscripts known as the Relaciones Geográficas, were created for Philip II of Spain between 1578 and 1585 as part of a survey of New Spain (Mexico), Central America, South America, and the Spanish West Indies. The Relaciones Geográficas were produced in the early colonial period of New Spain (ca. 1521–1600). Manuscripts from this transitional period often combine Native (i.e., Mixtec, Aztec, Zapotec) and European pictorial and design elements. The author initially assumed that the colorants on these six maps, like the pictorial elements, would combine Native and European technologies. Twenty-two colorants were sampled and analyzed by transmitted polarized light microscopy. This article will identify several of the samples and compare them to documented colorants from the early colonial period of New Spain. An inventory of known colorants from this period and region is provided.
2. BRIEF HISTORY OF NEW SPAIN
3. RELACIONES GEOGRÁFICAS
4. LITERATURE SURVEY
5. ANALYSIS OF COLORANT SAMPLES
a: Appendix , References , Author Information