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The War of Spanish Succession (1701–14) culminated in the transfer of the control of the Spanish monarchy to the French House of Bourbon. These rulers sought to transform the relationship between Spain and its American possessions, believing that prior administrations had been too lax. Lima was seen as an epitome of “decadence,” with its vain upper classes, exuberant public life, lax social codes, belligerent lower classes, and deep racial mixing. The Bourbons’ efforts to tighten control of Lima and the rest of Peru, however, prompted criticism and various forms of resistance and conflict. The eighteenth century also witnessed a great increase in the number of travelers who visited Lima, and many of them left rich accounts.

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