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Local antiquities, local identitiesArt, literature and antiquarianism in Europe, c. 1400–1700$
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Kathleen Christian and Bianca de Divitiis

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781526117045

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9781526117045.001.0001

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Local antiquaries and the expansive sense of the past: a case study from Counter-Reformation Spain

Local antiquaries and the expansive sense of the past: a case study from Counter-Reformation Spain

Chapter:
(p.167) 8 Local antiquaries and the expansive sense of the past: a case study from Counter-Reformation Spain
Source:
Local antiquities, local identities
Author(s):

Katrina B. Olds

Publisher:
Manchester University Press
DOI:10.7228/manchester/9781526117045.003.0009

In the seventeenth century, Spanish antiquarians collected inscriptions, coins, and other evidence of their community’s illustrious Christian origins, conflictive medieval past, and glorious present. Efforts to compile a suitable local history were particularly determined and prolific in the Andalusian diocese of Jaén, where two local enthusiasts of the past – Francisco de Rus Puerta and Martín Ximena Jurado – generated a voluminous body of manuscripts and printed books under the sponsorship of Jaén’s bishop. Like their counterparts elsewhere in Europe, Jaén’s antiquaries documented the past in both text and image, as the authors sketched coins, ruins in situ, and ongoing excavations for antiquities and saints’ relics. In these efforts, Greco-Roman antiquity played the handmaiden to the early Christian era, for it was of intense concern for Andalusian Catholics to prove that the Islamic invasion had not disrupted the region’s deep and essential Christian identity. In this way, ‘antiquity’ was a rather motley-coloured creature, encompassing not only the remains of Roman Hispania, but also including pre-Roman antiquities from Spain’s early Greek, Phoenician, and Celtiberian peoples, as well as Visigothic and some Islamic artefacts.

Keywords:   Renaissance Spain, Andalusia, Jaén, Francisco de Rus Puerta, Martín Ximena Jurado, Renaissance Antiquarianism in Spain, Spanish Renaissance Historiography

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