Arequipa: 1825. Manuscript in black ink on laid paper, very neatly written in a calligraphic hand, a fair copy of the text signed by Gonzalez and BEARING THE IMPRIMATUR OF SIMON BOLIVAR on the verso of the first blank, dated June 6, 1825: this six-line endorsement praises the utility of the work to the Republic of Peru, and is boldly signed by Bolivar. Remains of original blue paper wrappers, housed in a modern clamshell case. 8 1/4 x 6 inches (20.5 x 15 cm); leaf inscribed on verso by Bolivar; title leaf; dedication leaf to Bolivar signed by Gonzalez; leaf with quotation from Horace; 47 hand-numbered pp. (actually 48); terminal blank. Lacking upper wrapper (retaining spine and rear wrapper), some finger-soiling to text, but in all in excellent condition.
The political catechism was a popular genre in South and Central America during the revolutionary period. The first printed edition of the present work was produced in Arequipa in the same year that this manuscript was presented, in a printed book of 86 pages. Bolivar's injunction is for the work to be printed and circulated. G. Espinoza in Education and the State in Modern Peru 2013 notes "Dr. Antonio Gonzalez, author of a political catechism officially sponsored by General Simon Bolivar, considered elementary instruction the most necessary because it provided the foundation for the principles of a good political and moral education, provided knowledge to the largest amount of people, and was the basis for later acquisition of a greater scientific knowledge."
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