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Yucatán Collection

Identifier: Manuscripts-Collection 26

Scope and Contents

1557-1935. Manuscripts and printed documents in Spanish and Maya relating to the Yucatán peninsula. Most material is dated 1803-1880. Of particular note are the 1557 Crónica de Maní, the Crónica de Yaxkukul, the Crónica de Chicxulub, and the Juan Pío Pérez copy of the lost San Francisco Spanish-Maya / Maya-Spanish dictionary. 267 pieces.

The Yucatán Collection consists of both printed yet unbound documents and manuscripts in Spanish and Maya dealing with a variety of topics on the Yucatecan peninsula. Although a few manuscripts were acquired in the 1930's from Rafael Regil of Mérida, the Matilda Geddings Gray Expedition (c. 1925) under the direction of Frans Blom collected the majority. The collection has been divided between manuscripts (Boxes I, II, and IV) and printed material (Box III), with each division and box arranged in chronological order.

The 215 printed documents are in nineteen files corresponding to particular years extending from 1822 to 1866. They consist mainly of government decrees and notices of various departments in the State of Yucatán. Several deal with Yucatecan separatism, including one newspaper.

The forty-five manuscripts cover the years 1557-1930, yet the bulk (33) of these documents falls within the 1803-1880 period. The two earliest pieces have been transcribed, edited, and published in English translation by D.G. Brinton, ed., The Mayan Chronicles , (Philadelphia, 1882 [970.1(808) B858 V.1]) and in Latin by La Compte H. de Charencey Chrestomathie Maya (Paris, 1891). Seven pieces are in Maya, of which one is accompanied by a map (oversized) of the region about Maní. Indeed, more documents deal with this particular area that with any other. Topically, however, they treat such diverse subjects as the Spanish conquest, peasant revolts, legal battles, land disputes, financial transactions, military and ecclessiatical affairs, tribute accounts, and official community business. There are also some personal letters.

Manuscripts of particular note are the Maní land treaty and map (1557-1813), the Crónica de Yaxkukul (1674-1769), the Crónica de Chicxulub (a 17th century copy by Nakuk [Pablo] Pech), and the San Francisco dictionary of Spanish-Maya/Maya-Spanish (mid-19th century copy made by Juan Pío Pérez of a now-lost 17th century original).


  • 1557 - 1935

Conditions Governing Access

Open to the public. No known restrictions.


267.00 Pieces

Language of Materials

Spanish; Castilian

Arrangement Note

6 Hollinger boxes and 1 oversize folder
Yucatán Collection
Manuscript Collection 26, Manuscripts, The Latin American Library, Tulane University
Michael Forrest Fry, May 1981
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the The Latin American Library at Tulane Repository

7001 Freret Street
Howard-Tilton Memorial Library, 4th floor
Tulane University
New Orleans Louisiana 70118 US
(504) 865-5681