Paris: Augustin Courbe, 1633.
Hardcover. Good. Quarto, pp. ,1319, , in an early full calf binding. Lacks last two pages of index (i.e. 28 pp instead of 32). Boards somewhat scuffed, chipping at head pf spine, corners rubbed, two leaves -- pp 1017/1018 and 1019/1020 -- damaged, with small loss of text. Some old dampstaining visible at gutter on last ca. 50 pp, but overall clean and tightly bound. First French edition of this work, which was first published in Spain in 1609. "Garcilaso was the illegitimate son of a Spanish conquistador, Sebastian Garcilaso de la Vega, and an Inca Indian princess. Raised in his father’s household in Peru, he absorbed both the traditions of the Incas and the stories told by his father’s Spanish associates. He learned Spanish and Latin and was an eyewitness to the civil wars then raging in Peru, which he later recorded in his chronicles" (Britannica). This important work offers a history of the pre-conquest Inca Empire. Garcilaso published a second part (not present in this volume), a history of Peru from the Spanish Conquest to the Civil War, in 1617. The Spanish critic Menendez y Pelayo called the Royal Commentaries "the most genuinely American book that has ever been written, and perhaps the only one in which a reflection of the soul of the conquered races has survived."