An sit vtilitas in scelere vel de infelicitate principis Macchiauelliani, contra Macchiauellum & politicos eius sectatores.

Rome, Gulielmum Facciottum, 1610.

[with]

Anatome corporis politici, siue Liber de institutione ecclesiastici, & ciuilis ordinis, ex apposita comparatione, & similitudine corporis humani.

Paris, Nicolaum Chesneau, 1564.

[with]

Exetasis Epistolae nomine regis Magnae Britanniae: ad omnes christianos monarchas, principes, & ordines, scriptae: quae, praefationis monitoriae loco, ipsius apologiae pro iuramento fidelitatis, praefixa est.

Mons [Mainz?], Adamo Gallo [Johannes Albinus?], 1610.

£1,950

FIRST EDITION (first work). Three works in one. 8vo. 1) pp. (xxviii), 226, (ii), ✝⁸ 2✝⁶ A-N⁸ OÅ⁰. 2) ff. 4, [iv], 44. A⁸, A-E⁸, F⁴, A⁴. 3) forty unnumbered leaves, A-E⁸. Small woodcut devices on each title, woodcut initials and head and tail pieces. Interesting bibliographical note in C19th hand on fly referring to Richard Tompson’s ‘Elenchus’ and its criticism of the final work in this volume, clearly by someone who was well read in the texts concerning the ‘Oath of Allegiance’ controversy, Heber library stamp on fly. Jesuit ex libris ‘1647’ at head of title page. Light age yellowing, some side notes a bit cropped in second work, O5-6 misbound in first, the odd marginal spot. Good copies in contemporary vellum over boards, yapp edges, all edges blue.

Very interesting sammelband of rare works, two of which were written by English Catholics in Europe and designed as veiled criticism of the anti-Catholic policies of the English government. The first book is the first and only edition of a work by the English Jesuit Thomas Fitzherbert, grandson of the Judge Sir Anthony Fitzherbert. It is a reduction of his ‘Treatise concerning Policy and Religion (1606, 1610)’.

“Thomas Fitzherbert’s two-part Treatise concerning Policy and Religion (1606, 1610) was a rebuttal of unidentified Machiavellians, statists or politikes and their politics and policies. The work was apparently still well-regarded in the following century. Fitzherbert’s objections to ‘statism’ were principally religious, and he himself thought the providentialist case against it unanswerable. For those who did not share his convictions, he attempted to undermine Machiavellism on its own ground. Like both ‘Machiavellians’ and their opponents, he argued by inference from historical examples, with a particularly copious knowledge of ancient, medieval and modern historians. A particularly striking strategy (perhaps modelled on that of his mentor and friend Robert Persons) was Fitzherbert’s attempt to demonstrate, on the Machiavellians’ own premises, that they advocated policies which were very likely to fail, and would be visited with divine punishments sooner as well as later, whereas policies that were compatible with faith and morals were also much more likely to succeed, even judged in purely human and ‘statist’ terms.” History of European Ideas. Volume 37, Issue 2, 2011.

The third work has been ascribed to the Bristish Jesuit, the Scot Robert Abercromby (1536 – 1613) and is a virulent attack on James I, in the guise of a defence of the Oath of Allegiance, passed by Parliament in June 1606. Abercromby always denied authorship of the work. The book’s imprint states that the work was published in Mons but Allison and Rodgers suggest that it was actually printed at Mainz by Johannes Albus. “Robert Abercrombie, whose example is often cited to illustrate Elizabethan maltreatment of Roman Catholics, was a fugitive from James VI of Scotland. In 1601-6 he was forced to flee the court and take refuge under the protection of the marquess of Huntly. (…) He was credited with the conversion to Catholicism of Ann of Denmark, the wife of James VI.” Peter Paul Bajer. ‘Scots in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, 16th to 18th Centuries’.

A most interesting collection of rare works.

Allison and Rodgers I 477. Shaaber F107. 2) BM STC Fr. C16th 3) Allison and Rodgers I 4.1. Not in Shaaber.

L1952

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