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Archive 2616

Plato, Atlándida and chroniclers of Peru

Luis Enrique Tord

One of the highlights of the renovation of the humanities is the growing interest in reviewing the thought and work of our reporters in the cultural context of his time. This seems so simple that it has not been so much as contemporary demands, eager to make changes in light of modern principles, easily condemned and disdain for those who thought our continent from the perspective of his time training and going to belong, at best, a curious cast of characters undergoing superstitions, fantasies and errors of an era overtaken by contemporary scientific interpretations. The serenity that is returning to the center of analysis of the past can now, once again, to move towards a better understanding of ancient times and pick topics that may provide renewed light on the meaning and weight that had in the past.

On the other hand, has grown in importance the great theme of the history of ideas, and particular attention to approaches in vogue that influenced Renaissance writers Indians and the movement of underground streams that require careful thought review. Of the various topics that may be ahondados not the least interesting of the influence of Plato and Renaissance Neoplatonism in cultured chroniclers such as our Inca Garcilaso de la Vega. For several decades in the pioneering studies of Mariano Iberico, and in Flores and José Aurelio Miroquesada Durand, to name a few-has been pointing out its importance but it is imperative, continuing that path, deeper into specific issues.

On another occasion I noted one asserting the relevance of this to the “Inca Garcilaso Neoplatonism found a splendid channel realization in his monumental history of the Incas, exceptional intellectual effort, in subtle plot mingle myth and history, poetry and reality in the grandiose setting of a succession of eras that are consistent flow improvement on a scale that goes from the chaos of a primitive humanity to a high civilization, Tahuantisuyo that all was less than civilizations Classic, safe in the knowledge of Christian revelation. Thus, the story of great kings and emperors Incas came on top as a kind of monarchical succession legitimate Habsburg lineage that civilizing work continued Garcilaso’s ancestors to expand in the New World the fundamental benefits Faith, and not least, for an intellectual as aware as the Inca legacies of the ancient world.

His careful translation of a classic text as Renaissance Dialogues of Love (1590) Hebrew Leon demonstrates the passion that followed Neoplatonic approaches that since the second half of the fifteenth century were instrumental in the formation of the most cultured spirits Old World . Garcilaso lived because in this atmosphere and, no doubt, the Hebrew translation was exercising considerable erudition which placed him among the most respected humanist writers of Andalusia in the last third of the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. ”

Added to these considerations in his Royal Commentaries of the Incas (1609-1617) are few direct quotes from classical texts but “if the atmosphere is undeniable that comes in and spreads this work that stands as a fresh impressionist between the gauzy glow of light Neoplatonic and characters, monuments and landscapes that do not become entirely convincing to the reader scientific , because this work was not written by a historian in the modern sense of the meaning, but I saw a humanist in the narration of the facts of the Incas a bracket on the reality of the past that their tendency to deep which made him look for the origins of a society that had reached as high civilizing stadiums. ”

Also drew attention of other chroniclers Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala, the Jesuit Blas Valera, the Martin de Murua Mercy, Franciscan Buenaventura de Salinas, and the singular clergyman licensed and Fernando de Montesinos, who make mention of ages or “Suns “where the ancient Incas would have divided the time issue approaches as related to Mesoamerican origin and European Kabbalists, and that is so evident in Dialogues of Love . Precisely these cosmic rotations – intiphuapan or capachuatan – reminiscent of Leon Hebrew interpretations on passages of his work was applied censorship of the Inquisition.

Another very interesting topic is the dissemination of the island Atlantis myth as explanation of the origin of the American Indian population. As noted elsewhere, the chroniclers were the first to recover Plato’s narrative that seemed to explain something to them decisive linkage was between Aboriginal New World and the descendants of Adam and Eve, because for Christian mentality inconceivable the existence of a humanity that was not linked to the statement of Genesis. By the way, also circulated versions of the descendants of the ten lost tribes of Israel, the Trojans, the Egyptians, Romans, etc., But the version of Atlantis was extremely persistent.

We know that the version Platonic dialogue derives from the Timaeus whose essential paragraph says: “At that time podíase go through that sea. There was an island in front of the strait which you call the Pillars of Hercules which was larger than Libya and Asia combined. And that time travelers could go from the island to other islands, and from the latter to the mainland located all around that sea, which was a real Tues Since, from said narrow on the inside just seems to be a narrow throat Gulf, and across that real sea and the land that surrounds it, which can be really called, with all land property a ” 2 .

This description was then interpreted as the image of the Atlantic Ocean and, of course, remember the vision of Seneca Medea which asserts:

They have to come … in years yet distant days when the ocean the bonds drop things, huge open a new continent and Thetis discover worlds: not land the last Thule.

He had early impact version of Atlantis. But the chronicler Gonzalo Fernandez de Oviedo in his Natural History and the Indian general , islands and mainland, the ocean (1535) identifies more with the islands Indies Hesperides.

Instead Girolomano Fracastoro in his didactic poem Syphilis sive of curiosity Gallico (1530) asserts that Americans came from Atlantis. Also the Dominican friar Bartolomé de las Casas (1527) says that the mention of Plato might suggest to Columbus explore the ocean saying, “could reasonably expect though that island was lost and depressed, would other, or at least the mainland, and you could find looking for. ” Decades later Francisco Lopez de Gomara in his General History of the Indies (1552) states that Columbus could be influenced by the Athenian philosopher.

In 1555 the first edition of the History of the discovery and conquest of Peru Agustín de Zárate counter in which the first information that develops is precisely the origin of the inhabitants of America titrating this introduction: “Declaration of the difficulty some have to find out where they could go to Peru the people who first inhabited it. ” It asserts Zárate:

The question I usually have about find out where they could spend the provinces of Peru people since ancient times that inhabit it, seems to be satisfied by a story that recounts the divine Plato somewhat summarily in the book that entitles Timaeus or De Natura , and after the long and very heavily in another book or dialogue that follows immediately after the Timaeus , called Atlantic , where a story is recounted Egyptians in praise of the Athenians, who say they were parties to defeat and disrupt certain large number of kings and warriors, who came by sea from a large island called Atlantic, starting from the Pillars of Hercules … 3 . After analyzing the text of Plato and even quoting Plotinus and Marsilio Ficino in support of this thesis, adds: “For over budget be true history, who can deny that this Atlantic island starting from the Straits of Gibraltar, or shortly after last of Cadiz, and came and stretched by that great gulf, where, and south as northern ueste Leste, has space to be larger than Asia and Africa? The islands that reads the text hired from there would Paresce clear that the Spanish, San Juan and Cuba and Jamaica, and others that are in that region. The land is said to be fronting Desta islands, has because it was the same agora mainland that is named, and all provinces who is continent, starting from the Strait of Magellan, contains running north land Peru and the Province of Popayan and Castilla del Oro, and Veragua, Nicaragua, Guatemala, New Spain, the Seven Cities, Florida, Bacallaos, and runs from there to the northerly up together with the Norwegian, in which no There is certainly much more land than the entire population in the world that conoscíamos before that was discovered and not cause much difficulty in this business not been discovered before now by the Romans and by other nations at various times occupied Spain; because it is believed that lasted sea weed to impede navigation, and I have heard, and I believe, that included the discovery of those parts under this authority of Plato, and so that land can be clearly call earth Plato continent that is, as it were all the signs he gives to the other, mostly one in which the neighbor says is true sea, which is the South really call because so SE has navigated to Clearly our time has, for its breadth and greatness, all the known Mediterranean Sea and Ocean, commonly called North, are rivers. As if all this is true, and also agree with the signs dello Plato’s words, not because they have trouble understanding that in this way may have many people go to Peru and from this great Atlantic island and from the other islands to where they sailed from that island, and even from the same land could pass by land to Peru in April .

The great navigator, cosmographer and chronicler Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa devotes considerable space to the subject of Atlantis in Chapters 3, 4, and 5 of its history indicates 5 . Advances in these detailed data and arguments concluding flatly that “here is found that the Indies of Castile were continent with the Atlantic Island.” Adds that “the rich and very powerful kingdoms of Peru and cotérminas Atlantic provinces were, which were deducted from those early Mesopotamians or Babylonians, people of the world.”

Finally in 1607, Fray Gregorio Garcia, a Dominican, in his Origin of the Indians of the New World and the West Indies in June devotes ten chapters of Book 4 to describe the reasons favorable and adverse understood that thesis leaning in favor of it. Franklin Pease GY, the American Library edition of Economic Culture Fund, makes a description of their claims fulfilled in the prologue.

They could not miss those who opposed these considerations with a remarkably modern rationalist spirit of his time such as the noted historian Jesuit Joseph de Acosta who disparagingly specifies: “… what you can not really tell but is boys and old” . Other prominent authors that contradict the Atlantic origin are Juan de Torquemada, Juan de Solórzano y Pereira and Antonio de Ulloa. In our century have addressed this issue, among others, José de la Riva Agüero y Osma in the ‘Atlantis’, in Conquest and the Viceroyalty (1930) 7 , Jose Armando Vivante Imbelloni and in The Book of Atlantises (1939 ) in August and Ida Rodriguez Prampolini in Atlantis of Plato in the sixteenth century chroniclers (1947) 9 .

There is no doubt that the text of Gregory Garcia is the largest effort made by a historian of the Indies as monumental collection of information to support the view of the Atlantic ancestry, Americans. And it has been considered for centuries in novomundista historiography so that in the chronic version that appears in Zárate Andrés González de Barcia collection of Madrid in 1749, warns: “This issue generally, according to the dignity rightful, elegant erudition treated with the father presented Fray Gregorio Garcia of the Dominican Order, with many additions and reflections are finished printing the year 1729. ” Incidentally, the year referred to this quote is the editing González Barcia, since the first edition of the work of Garcia appeared in 1607.

But my interest is not to review the genealogy of this controversy but to call attention to a proposal, as any study of this nature, it is easy to check. However, make references and signs suggestive. Is that one of the great Renaissance utopias as New Atlantis 10 of Francis Bacon encounter some features that have led me to suspect that this remarkable British author could have known the Galician navigator having references from your journey through the Sea South during which he discovered the Solomon Islands. This idea was developed in a literary story but I think it should also translate it as a proposed interpretive essay 11 .

Let’s start by specifying that in the year of 1586 Sarmiento de Gamboa was found prisoner in London following his capture in the Atlantic by English privateers under the command of Sir Walter Raleigh when Spanish explorer Magellan Strait returned after having founded there a colony to fortify that step which was the governor. At that time Sarmiento had sex with her captor-sailor and writer like him, which made that were in the vicinity of Raleigh friends as were the courtiers of Elizabeth eminent Lord Francis Bacon of Verulam, Viscount St. Alban, the Earl of Leicester and the poet Philip Sidney. These and other characters of the Elizabethan period were splendid turn environment John Dee, the famous physician, mathematician and magician who owned considerable knowledge in navigation as seen in his General and Rare Memorials Pertayning to the Perfect Art of Navegation (1577). Dee was not in London for the prison because Sarmiento was traveling around Europe.

But who we are interested in these lines is Francis Bacon, as stated above. Bacon was man of twenty-five , dean of the College of Lawyers, independent MP for Taunton and special Crown attorney.

There is no doubt that the treatment given to Sarmiento had to be very considerate he was a captain of Philip II, cosmographer greater the Viceroyalty of Peru, governor and captain general of the Straits of Magellan to over educated man whose interview with Queen Isabel – won by her captor Raleignh spent in Latin. We should note also that the cosmographer had written around that time several important texts that had turned its vast maritime experience and history as the account given by Captain Pedro Sarmiento of what happened on the trip that verified with Alvaro Mendaña in discovery of the Solomon Islands (1572) and History Indicates (1572), the latter manuscript he had made at the request of Viceroy Francisco de Toledo when he had it in his immediate collaborators during their stay in the city of Cuzco. This information leads me to assume that Bacon must have known our sailing trips whose implications we find in work is as remarkable as the New Atlantis.

On the date of her appearance -1627 – must specify: posthumous edition was because the author had died a year earlier, in 1626. And: Bacon had written in 1622, and perhaps earlier, according to other researchers. It would be a little more than thirty years of the alleged encounter with Sarmiento Bacon or knowledge of him the adventures of Spanish in the South Seas.

Possible links that appear were suggested from the front lines when Bacon writes: “We start from Peru, where we remained for about a year, bound for China and Japan, crossing the South Sea …” remember here that is the same journey of Gamboa-Mendaña expedition conducted in 1567 and 1569 and for us something very significant: Bacon Island Atlantis is in the Atlantic Ocean but in the Pacific, scene of the Galician ocean cruises.

Shortly after the story describes how his utopia sailors sighted an island from which comes a boat with eight people who spoke … the Spanish language and its emblem was a winged cherub and a cross because they were Christians. At the island the castaways are that it is the Society of Solomon’s House which, as noted, is the name that is named the lands discovered by Sarmiento-Mendaña: King Solomon Islands. For others it was certainly not the rumor that the Phoenician Hiram, who sailed to King Solomon’s orders, would have led to the construction of the temple of Jerusalem precious metals from Tarshish and Ophir. Also the coach’s parents were Solomon’s House by symbol on the roof “a shining golden sun” recalling the supreme deity of the Inca Empire.

But to be all our inquiries notable for what is more, if anything, the fact of the narrative of the conflict that pitted the island with the rich kingdoms of Peru and Mexico and whose version is as follows:

… For a whole long time, the inhabitants of the great Atlantis enjoyed great prosperity. For though the narration and description by one of your great men, that the descendants of Neptune had settled there, and the magnificent temple, palace, city and hill, and the many beautiful streams navigable rivers surrounding the said city and temple, as so many chains, and those various stands where men ascended to the summit as a scale Celeste, is mostly a poetic fable, however there is much truth in it, since that country of Atlantis, as well as that of Peru, then called Coya, and Mexico named Tyrambel, kingdoms were proud, and powerful weapons, ships, and all manner of riches were so powerful that both made at once, or at least in the space of ten years, two major expeditions: those of Tryrambel across the Atlantic to the Mediterranean Sea, and the Sea of Coya South to our island. And with regard to the first of these expeditions that came to Europe, your same author should definitely have some account of the Egyptian priests who cites, as it is clear that such a thing happened. Now, I can not tell if they were the ancient Athenians that had the glory of the repulse and resistance of these forces, and the only certainty is that neither men nor ships returned to this country. Nor those of Coya had had better fortune in his expedition had not encountered such great enemies of clemency. For the king of this island, by name Altabín, wise and great warrior, aware of his power and of his enemies, resolved the conflict by addressing its ground forces and surrounding buildings, and its navy as their camp, by sea and land forces, much greater than theirs, thus forcing them to surrender without going to attack, and after having them at his mercy, it being satisfied that he swore to never take up arms against him, from left everyone healthy and saved 12 . Import this event because in collecting the echo of a description that was written only by Sarmiento and by any other chronicler Miguel Cabello de Peru Valboa except that the repeated years later in Southern Miscellany (1586). This passage tells the story that Tupac Inca Yupanqui became known by some merchants on the north coast of Peru the existence of islands called Anachumbi and Ninachumbi in which he asserted that he had “many people and gold.” Inca organized a great expedition in a huge number of ponds in which twenty thousand soldiers embarked chosen. ” The result of it could not be more successful because of those Sarmiento says island “black people and brought much gold and brass chair and a skin and jaw horse trophies which were stored at the fortress of Cuzco until the time of the Spanish. This horse skin and jaw kept a main Inca, who lives and gives this relationship, and the other was found independently present and Guaranga Urco It is called. I stress on this, because those who knew something of Indias will seem strange and difficult to believe ” 13 .

Sarmiento links without any doubt the identification of these island and those found with Mendaña to conclude unequivocally asserting that these “are the islands that I discovered in the South Sea, and many leagues ducientas Lima …»

Very characteristic of Sarmiento, always dazzled with foreign elements that cost difficulties facing the Church and the Holy Office of the Inquisition, added another ingredient: a magician Antarqui name, ordered by the Inca to find the existence of those islands flew and returned to inform them.

No less important is to remember that Sarmiento de Gamboa insisted on continuing southwesterly navigation beyond the Solomon Islands, with the intention of discovering the land they spoke the classical and medieval tradition, and as reflected in the maps Terra Australis Incognita as the lost continent southernmost Ptolemy, the cosmographers Catigara the Middle Ages, the land that would have arrived the ten lost tribes of Israel fled from captivity of Shalmaneser, king of the Chaldeans. At the end of the Sarmiento had asserted in its history indicates , in the first pages of the three chapters on the island Atlantis, that “the rich and very powerful kingdoms of Peru and cotérminas Atlantic provinces were,” including the Solomon Islands’ that I by our Lord, discovered in the South Sea in the year 1568 … ” 14 .

In other words, we find that just as many conquerors were tempted to find in America the Land of Cinnamon, the City of the Caesars, the Grand Paititi or El Dorado, eventually discovering the vast horizons and Amazon, were sailors – and Sarmiento, who persecuted the first meeting with the lands that had belonged to Atlantis allowing the discovery of the islands covered. Classical myths were then in the foundation of the voyages of discovery and, beyond that, in the birth of texts wingspan New Atlantis in which we find traces of Sarmiento de Gamboa, his theories and his extraordinary efforts maritime make him one of the outstanding figures of the sixteenth century.


1 Tord, Luis Enrique. “Dialogue of love.” In Book of Homage to Aurelio Miro Quesada Sosa , vol. II. Lima, 1987. p. 849 et seq.

2 Plato. ‘s Timaeus . Mexico, Editorial Porrúa SA, 1984. It has also important information or Atlantis Critias .

3 Zárate, Agustin. history of the discovery and conquest of Peru . Peruvian Library. First Series, Volume II. Lima, 1968, p. 110-111.

4 Ibid , p. 112-113.

5 Sarmiento de Gamboa, Pedro. history indicates . Library of Spanish Authors No. 135. Madrid, 1965. p. 200 et seq.

6 Garcia, Gregorio. Origin of the Indians in the New World and the Indies or ccidentales . Mexico, American Library Fund of Economic Culture, 1981.

7 Riva-Agüero y Osma, José de la. ‘Atlantis’. In Conquest and the Viceroyalty. Lima, Riva-Agüero Institute, 1968.

8 Imbelloni, Joseph, and Vivante, Armando. Atlantises Book of . Buenos Aires, Humanior Collection, 1939.

9 Rodriguez Prampolini, Ida. Plato’s Atlantis century chroniclers and XVI. Mexico, 1947.

10 Bacon, Francis . “New Atlantis . “ In Renaissance Utopias. Mexico, Fondo de Cultura Economica, 1956.

11 Tord, Luis Enrique. “New Atlantis”. In Canvas, vol. 17. Lima, 1996, p. 185-200.

12 Bacon, New Atlantis , p. 210-211.

13 Sarmiento de Gamboa, history suggests , p. 251.

14 Ibid , p. 206.


Original text

Platón, la Atlándida y los cronistas del Perú

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