ABSTRACT

This monograph examines the imperial spectacles and startling reversals of fortune related in History of the Conquest of Mexico (1843) and History of the Conquest of Peru (1847), and investigates how Prescott’s histories inspired fictional adaptations by George A. Henty, H. Rider Haggard, and George Griffith. The revision of history in the Amerindian adventure entertained young transatlantic audiences, was a vehicle to attract tourism and investment in countries such as Mexico and Peru, and a way to impart British values. Such values compel the characters and narrators of novels discussed to act as cultural mediators, to acquire indigenous languages and adopt native ways of being, and, in several of the romances under consideration, to marry Mexican or Incan noblewomen. Part I, Conquest, examines George Henty’s By Right of Conquest: Or, With Cortez in Mexico (1891), Rider Haggard’s Montezuma’s Daughter (1893) and George Griffith’s Virgin of the Sun: A Tale of the Conquest of Peru (1898). Part II, Reclamation, argues that English re-writings of history work to eclipse the Spanish in Haggard’s of Virgin the Sun (1922), Henty’s Treasure of the Incas (1902) and Griffith’s Romance of Golden Star (1897).

Acknowledgments

Introduction

Part I. Conquest
Chapter 1. The Rewards of Adventure in Henty’s By Right of Conquest: Or, With Cortez in Mexico (1891)
Chapter 2. Haggard’s Montezuma’s Daughter (1893) as Memoir of the Spanish Conquest
Chapter 3. ‘I was there’: George Griffith’s Trek on the Inca Trail and Virgin of the Sun: A Tale of the Conquest of Peru (1898)

Part II. Reclamation
Chapter 4. Eclipsing the Spanish in Haggard’s Virgin of the Sun
Chapter 5. The Rewards of Speculation and the Promise of Development in Henty’s Treasure of the Incas (1902)
Chapter 6. The Campaign of Reclamation in George Griffith’s Romance of Golden Star (1897)

Epilogue

Index