IRELAND [Laws]

At the Parliament begun and holden at Dublin, the foureteenth day of Iuly, in the tenth yeere of the raigne of our most gracious soveraigne lord, Charles .. And there continued untill the 18. day of Aprill. 1635

Dublin [i.e. London], Imprinted by the Society of Stationers, printers to the Kings most excellent Maiesty [i.e. Felix Kingston? and R. Young], 1636.

£2,750

FIRST EDITION. Folio. ff [vii], 101. A-S⁶. Black letter, some Roman. Title within fine architectural border, woodcut arms of Charles I of verso of first leaf, those of Stafford on A3, large woodcut initials and grotesque head and tail-pieces, slightly later autograph of “Wm, Conyngham” at head of title with price mark. Minor oil stain to very outer margin of title, rare marginal spot or very minor stain. A very good copy, crisp and clean with good margins in contemporary English or Irish calf, covers bordered with a double blind rule, later red morocco label gilt, all edges red.

A very good copy of the first edition of these very rare Irish statutes printed during Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford’s tenure as Lord Deputy of Ireland with his and Charles I arms, in London under a false imprint of Dublin. These statutes covering civil, criminal, and administrative law were passed during the Irish Parliament called in 1634-5. “The Parliament called in Ireland in 1634 is an event that has been surprisingly little discussed by English historians, despite its obvious value as a guide to government thinking on parliaments during the years of Personal Rule. In fact,it was the years of the so called personal rule that witnessed the only successful parliaments of Charles reign – the ‘Coronation Parliament’ of 1633 in Scotland and the Irish parliament of 1634-5. Indeed Wentworth stated frankly in a letter to his cousin George Butler that the 1634 parliament had been ‘the only ripe Parliament that hath been gathered in my Time, and all the rest have been a green Fruit broken from the Bow, which, as you know, are never so kindly or pleasant.The Irish parliament of 1634 was very much Wentworth’s creation .. [He] needed the parliament in order to grant sufficient supplies as to enable him to keep his army in a state of readiness – it was the army that, as Wentworth explained to the King, was the ultimate foundation of his Irish government.” J. F. Merritt. The Political World of Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Strafford, 1621-1641. A most important and interesting set of statutes concerning Ireland at a seminal moment in Irish history.

The William, Marquis Conyngham copy, exhibited in the National Gallery of Ireland in 1997, at the exhibition: “Five hundred years of the art of the book in Ireland – 1500 to the present”. Conyngham was a longtime Member of Parliament in the Irish House of Commons for Ennis. From 1793 he was one of the Commissioners of the Treasury for Ireland. Conyngham is most famous today for having presented the Trinity College Harp to Trinity College Dublin; from 1922 the harp was used as the model for the insignia of the Irish Free State and the Republic of Ireland.

STC 14137. ESTC S477968

L2069

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GALILEI, Galileo

GALILEO’S DEFENSE OF THE COPERNICAN THEORY, FIRST EDITION

Istoria e dimostrazioni intorno alle macchie solari e loro accidenti… Si aggiungono nel fine le Lettere, e Disquisizioni del finto Apelle.

Rome, Giacomo Mascardi, 1613.

£39,500

4to, pp. (4), 164, 55, (1), plus folded table. Roman letter, little Italic; device of the Lincei Academy on title, historiated initials and engraved full-page portrait of Galileo at p. 5, 43 full-page engravings of sunspots and of Jovian satellites, several engraved tables and woodcut diagrams in text; light foxing mainly to margins, couple of tiny wormholes to gutter, light damp stain to tail of central gatherings, ink splash on f. Aii. A good copy in contemporary limp vellum, eps renewed; two minor repairs to head and tail of spine; occasional early underlining; label of David P. Wheatland (1898-1993), founder and curator of the Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments of Harvard on front pastedown.

Rare first edition of Galileo’s earliest published endorsement of the Copernican theory, in its most complete variant. Two issues appeared in Rome by Mascardi, one with three additional letters by the Jesuit scientist Christoph Scheiner. Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) was one of the greatest mathematicians and astronomers of all time. His cutting-edge discoveries revolutionised early modern physics and eventually provoked the famous condemnation of the Holy Inquisition. Amongst many other acknowledgements, he was a member of the prestigious Academy of Lincei, a pioneering scientific fellowship established in Rome by Federico Cesi.

Galileo wrote the Istoria e dimostrazione in the form of three letters to his fellow academician Marcus Welser of Augsburg, arguing that sunspots appeared on the surface of the sun: they were not tiny satellites, as the traditional Aristotelian interpretation suggested. Based on telescopic observation of their motion, Galileo concluded that the sun rotated on a fixed axis like the Earth and other planets, thus embracing and somehow overstepping Copernicus’s view. In his usual combative tone, he maintained: ‘this planet also, perhaps no less than horned Venus, agrees admirably with the great Copernican system on which propitious winds now universally are seen to blow …’ His further discovery of the Satellites of Jupiter is described and illustrated with 5 plates. The work also includes Galileo’s first written account of the phases of Venus and Mercury as well as some considerations on the many puzzling mysteries surrounding Saturn. His circumstantial approval of the Copernican model anticipated many of his later theories and the related political and religious consequences.

This issue contains a second part entitled De maculis solaribus tres epistolae, comprising the three letters written to Welser by Christoph Scheiner about 1611. Scheiner was a Jesuit scholar and professor in Ingolstadt, Rome, Vienna and Nyssa. A pugnacious defender of the Ptolemaic system, he was a major antagonist of Galileo. His epistles, in which he states that sunspots are small planets, prompted Galileo to publish his account of his own observations. This was the first of several other debated between the two scholars, involving also the paternity of the discovery of the spots. The two issues of the editio princeps of Istoria e dimostrazioni were published at the same time; apparently, the first was meant to be distributed in Italy (where there would be no copyright dispute on Scheiner’s letters), whereas the second was tailored for export.

The edition bears a beautiful engraved portrait of Galileo within architectural border, drawn by the famous artist Francesco Villamena (1564-1624). Two putti are representations of astronomical science: one is measuring with a compass, the other is observing the sky with a telescope.

BM STC It. 17th, 373; Cinti, 44; Carli and Favaro, 60; Riccardi, I, 509 (without Schenier’s letters); Waller, 12046; Dawson, 2587 (‘[This issue] is generally considered to be the rarer of the two, and certainly to be preferred, as it gives us the full story of these celebrated discoveries’).

K24

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BUCHANAN, George

SCOTTISH HISTORY FROM JAMES VI’S TUTOR

Rerum Scoticarum historia.

Edinburgh, Alexandrum Arbuthnetum, 1582.

£2,750

FIRST EDITION. Folio. ff. (iv), 85, (i), 74-249, (i). Roman letter. Large woodcut printer’s device on title, title within typographical border, floriated initial and woodcut ornaments, early book label removed from outer edge of title page, early autograph beneath ‘Gar Schur’ with marginal annotations in the same hand throughout, “the Rev? Professor James Copper DD from JSM and CSM” on front end paper, “W Douglas Simpson from Tho Cooper Elgin 1946 above” letters tipped in from Sir John Stirling Maxwell of Pollock House concerning the gift to Copper. Title page very slightly dusty, with a little age yellowing in places. A fine copy, crisp and clean, with good margins in contemporary vellum over thin boards, yapp edges, all edges finely gauffered, a boar, hare and a dog stamped on upper edge, vellum a little soiled.

Rare first edition of this important History of Scotland and the most important work of George Buchanan (1506-1582), Scotch historian and scholar, man of affairs and tutor to James VI. The ‘History’ was Buchanan’s chef d’oeuvre and was an immense success. It was immediately translated into the continental languages and was the chief, if not the only source from which foreigners knew anything about Scotland. By the middle of the C18 it had been reprinted nineteen times.

The first three books give a description of the physical characteristics of the country and the rest its history by the reigns of its kings. The earliest part is largely fabulous; from Malcolm on it improves, and by the middle of the C13 it is a work of value. By the reign of James V it has the merit of being written by a virtual contemporary, albeit a very partisan one. For Buchanan, Mary could do no right and her opponents no wrong. “For a time Buchanan was on very good terms with Mary. (…) Following the murder of Mary’s second husband Lord Darnley, in 1567, Buchanan turned against her and became the Queen’s most violent detractor. Buchanan was instrumental in preparing the case for the prosecution against Mary, narrating her misdeeds and attempting to justify her deposition in the polemical ‘De Maria Scotorum Regina’.. His political theory had the same aim, justifying the rights of resistance against tyrannical monarchs (…) In his Rerum Scoticarum Historia, published in 1582,the last year of his life Buchanan sought to demonstrate that his principles of resistance were embedded in the grand sweep of Scottish history.” Dr Caroline Erskine. ‘George Buchanan: Political Thought in Early Modern Britain and Europe’.

The work was immensely influential in shaping popular opinion, not just in its own time but for nearly two centuries afterwards, and no Scotch historian of the period can neglect it. The work was also particularly influential in England particularly on writers such as Sir Philip Sidney and Edmund Spenser. “It is also evident that large numbers of English readers had access to sections of Buchanan’s Rerum Scoticarum Historia, even if they could not read the Latin edition of 1582, through the admittedly hostile translation/ adaptation of Francis Thynne published in Holinshed’s Chronicles when it was revised in 1587, one of who was William Shakespeare. As it was likely, but hardly inevitable, that James VI of Scotland would succeed Elizabeth, there was an understandably widespread interest in the violent and rocky course of Scottish history in England in the late 1580’s and early 1590’s” Dr Caroline Erskine.‘

From the library at Pollock House in Glasgow which was in the Maxwell family for 700 years. In 1939 Sir John Stirling-Maxwell drew up a conservation agreement over the estate with the National Trust for Scotland, of which he was a founder member. His daughter gifted the house and estate to the City in 1966.

A very good copy of this important first edition.

ESTC S107152. STC 3991. Aldis 182. Lowndes I 300.

L2034

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DE’MEDICI, Lorenzo

Poesie Volgari.

Venice, Figliuoli di Aldo, 1554.

£8,750

FIRST EDITION. 8vo. ff. 205 (iii). Roman and Italic letter, anchor device to title page and verso of last, historiated woodcut initials. Light age yellowing, very light water stain towards outer margin, very occasional spot or mark. Without O5-8 as usual and excluded from the register, comprising canzoni that were suppressed. A very good copy, crisp and clean in c. 1800 vellum, spine gilt ruled in compartments, olive and red morocco gilt lettered labels, original gilt and gauffered edges, arms of Hon. George Fortescue blind stamped on upper cover.

FIRST EDITION of the poems and poetic commentary of Lorenzo de’Medici, some of which are were written as early as age 17. The sonnets, sestinas, and songs are almost entirely preoccupied with love for beautiful women, in a style both imaginative and lively that strives toward the lyric of Dante and Petrarch. In his “Comment” on the poems, Medici expounds on life, love, his philosophical influences, and even current events that inspired him. For instance, he describes the death of Simonetta Vespucci, “la bella Simonetta” after his own nickname for the model for Boticelli’s Venus, and its influence over his work: throughout Florence her early death produced sadness and ‘a most ardent longing for her. And therefore she was taken uncovered from her house to the burial place, and moved all who crowded around to see her to copious tears’. Poems written later in life are also included in the volume, of a more serious and religious nature: on the virgin Mary, and the Crucifiction and Resurrection of Christ.

Lorenzo de’Medici “The Magnificent” (1449 – 1492), scholar, politician, and poet, was the driving force behind the flourishing culture of 15th century Florence through his patronage of the arts. Walter Pater’s characterization of Lorenzo’s age with that of Pericles is perhaps most apt: “It is an age productive in personalities, many-sided, centralized, complete. Here, artists and philosophers and those whom the action of the world has elevated and made keen, do not live in isolation, but breathe a common air, and catch light and heat from each other’s thoughts. There is a spirit of general elevation and enlightenment, in which all alike communicate.”

George Fortescue (1791-1877) son of the first Earl Fortescue, was member of Parliament for Hindon, who supported many pro-catholic bills in parliament. Although little noticed a a collector, he had a fine library, particularly of Aldines.

Renouard 162.23 “Presque tous les exemplaires sont multilés de cinq chansons (Canzoni) dans le feuille O”. Adams M1005. Ahmanson-Murphy IIIa 410. Gamba 648 “Raro…Questa edizione Aldina fu tenuta in molto pregio”. Not in Gay.

L1815

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COTTA, Catellano


Memoralia ex variis utriusque Iuris Doctoribus collecta.

Lyon, Jean Frellon, 1556.

£1,950

8vo, pp. (40), 942, (50). Neat Roman letter, little Greek, large woodcut initials. Original paperflaw affecting one letter on p. 175, tiny rust spots to pp. 269-273. Very crisp copy in English contemporary calf, blind-tooled boards, double-panelled, fleuron in central frame and fleur-de-lis ornaments to corners, red morocco label, slightly worn, minor losses on the edges, repair to head and foot of the spine, front joint and spine a bit cracked. Endpapers from a contemporary English-Latin Black Letter dictionary. Modern book plate on front pastedown and of the great Bridgewater Library on title verso, early shelf marks on title.

First French edition of this very detailed legal lexicon, published jointly in Lyon by Antoine Vicent and Jean Frellon. The issue with Frellon’s device on the title is rare. The work appeared first in Pavia (1511) and then in Basle (1545). Scion of a patrician family of Milan, Paolo Michele Cotta (1484-1553), known as Catellano, read law with the humanists Filippo Decio and Andrea Alciato. He climbed the administration ladder in the Duchy of Milan during the troubled times of the Italian wars, when the territory was sought after by the French kingdom and the Habsburg Empire. A couple of encyclopaedic law works came from his pen. At the end of his life, he curated and annotated a new edition of the Milanese statutes. His Memoralia scholarly illustrated the complexity of Latin legal terminology, relying on a vast number of juridical sources, from ancient authors and Justinian’s Digest to his living colleagues. This useful work exerted influence up to the eighteenth century. An encomiastic poem by Andrea Alciato hailed Cotta as ‘alter Papinianus’, comparing him to the famous Roman jurist.

‘The famous Bridgewater Library, probably the oldest large family library in the United Kingdom, was started about 1600 by Sir Thomas Egerton, Baron Ellesmere and Viscount Brackley (1540?-1617), appointed Lord Chancellor by James I. His third wife, the Dowager Countess of Derby, was a noteworthy protector of literature. In 1917 the Bridgewater books, with all the manuscripts and family papers, were sold to the late Mr Henry E. Huntington and are now part of his great library at San Marino, California, with the exception of a certain number of volumes he discarded as duplicates.’ S. De Ricci, English Collector of Books and Manuscripts, pp. 17-18.

Not in BM STC It. Argelati, Bibliotheca, II, 3485; IV, 1980-1991.

L1772

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PONTANUS, Johannes Isaacus

FROM THE LIBRARY OF KING CHARLES I

Historiae Gelricae libri 14. Deducta omnia ad ea usque tempora nostra, quibus firmata sub ordinibus republica

Harderwijk, excudit Nicol. à Wieringen gymnasij typographus: sumptibus Iohannis Iansonii, bibliopolae Amsterodamensis, 1639.

£13,500

FIRST EDITION folio. pp. (xxvi), 72, 956, (lxxii). π², (:)⁴, *², 2*⁴, a-f⁶, A-4K⁶, 4L⁴, 4M-4R⁶, with four engraved portraits, five double page folding engraved maps, and four double page folding engraved plans of cities The five maps are of the Duchy or Gelrica, Nijmegen, Roermond, Zutphen and Arnhem. The town plans are of Nijmegen, Zupthen and Harderwijk. Roman letter, some Italic and Gothic. Fine engraved title with putti above with the arms of Gelderland, portraits of Claudius King of Batavia and William Prince of Orange at sides, large floriated and historiated woodcut initials, woodcut head and tail pieces, engraved C19th armorial book plate of the ‘The Earl of Roden’ with shelf mark on pastedown. Light age yellowing, minor dust soiling to first and last leaves. A fine copy crisp and clean in a contemporary London binding of black morocco, covers bordered with two double gilt rules with gilt dentelle rolls, Royal arms of Charles I gilt at centre, with a semé of flowers stars and fleurons gilt, flat spine gilt tooled with the same gilt borders and semé as covers.

A lovely copy of the beautifully printed and illustrated first edition of this monumental history of Gelderland, finely bound in black morocco, and richly gilt, for Charles I of England. The binding, with its rich semé of small tools, is fairly typical of the sumptuous bindings made for Charles I’s library; see British library catalogue of bindings shelf mark c24c4 for a binding attributed to the ‘Squirrel binder’ with a similar decoration also made for Charles I, with his arms gilt at center. For a study of the Royal arms blocks of which sixteen variants exist see Foot “Some bindings for Charles I” ‘Studies in Seventeenth-Century English literature History and Bibliography.’

In 1597 the provincial assembly of Gerle decided to commission a history of the Duchy of Gelderland, and Paulus Merula of Leiden University was approached to do the research. His work was severely hampered by the war and was eventually passed to his successor Johannes Luntius. When Luntius died in 1620 “the task was again transferred to another historian, Johannes Isaacus Pontanus in Harderwijk. Although like his predecessors not a native Geldersman, he was at least a resident of the province… Also like his predecessors Pontanus received a bundle of documents already collated and copied for the enterprise. The state made available 956 guilders to acquire chronicles and histories from Brabant, Cleves, Flanders, Utrecht and Julich. It was also recommended that Pontanus should have access to the archives of the regional aristocratic families. In 1634 the estates decided to print Pontanus’ manuscript, which now covered the history of Gelderland until 1438, the death of the last independent Duke. A commission was established whose members should check the manuscript before publication. It was then decided that the work should be extended to cover the period up too 1581.” Raingard Esser ‘The Politics of Memory: The Writing of Partition in the Seventeenth-Century Low Countries’. Pontanus studied in Franeker and Leiden, and worked for three years in Basel with the Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe. He taught at the University of Harderwijk from 1604 until his death. A lovely copy, beautifully bound for Charles I’s own library with the royal arms. Most ‘Royal’ bindings have a limited connection with the monarch whose arms they bear; often they merely demonstrate his remote patronage of the institution concerned. This sumptuous binding, however, was made for King Charles for one of his collections, interestingly continuing the style created by Bateman for the Royal library two generations earlier.

BM STC Fr. C17th. C375. Sabin III 11272. JFB 630/42.

L1817

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TWYNE, Brian

Antiquitatis Academi Oxoniensis apologia: In tres libros divisa

Oxford, Excudebat Iosephus Barnesius, Anno Dom, 1608

£1,950

FIRST EDITION. pp. [viii], 384, [lxxii]. Roman letter, some Italic. Small woodcut device on title, floriated woodcut initials, woodcut head-pieces, typographical tailpieces and ornaments, bookplate of John Hannah on pastedown, C17th engraved armorial bookplate of Johann Conrad Feuerlein on fly, modern library stamp on verso, ms. shelf mark on pastedown.Light age yellowing, some quires a little browned, light spotting, the odd marginal ink splash or mark. A very good copy, on thick, crisp paper, in contemporary polished English limp vellum, gilt arms at center of upper cover within circular wreath, yapp edges, remains of ties.

An excellent copy of the first edition of the first work to deal in detail with the history of the University of Oxford, with interesting provenance. “Brian Twyne, one of the greatest of Oxford antiquaries, has never, perhaps with good reason, attracted any considerable notice. His only printed work, written when he was but a young man, was of a controversial character, and not of a kind to establish his reputation as a sound historian. His services to the University in preparing the Laudian code and drafting the great charter of 1636 necessarily had to wear the veil of anonymity, and the value of his manuscript collections relating to the University and the City has only in recent years been fully recognized. …….The work consists of 456 pages and contains, in addition to the Apology, a list of colleges and halls with their principals and also a list of the Chancellors and Proctors of the University. It was the first published history of the University of Oxford and a remarkable achievement for a young scholar of twenty-eight. The compilation demanded wide reading and the use of many original documents. Among the authorities cited are the archives of the City, the University, Bal1iol, Oriel, Magdalen and University Colleges; many college registers and statutes; and the cartularies of Osney, Abingdon, and St. Frideswide. These were supplemented. by · manuscripts in the possession of Thomas Allen and fortified by the authority of Homer, Euripides, Aristotle, Plautus, Ovid, Pliny, Virgil and Cicero. The most modern book at that time on Twyne’s subject, Petri Rebuffi De privilegiis Universitatum, is also cited. The first two books are concerned chiefly with what Sir Simonds D’Ewes called ‘senum deliria,’ but book 3 contains a good general account of University history from 1214.” Strickland Gibson. ‘Brian Twyne’

The book belonged to the German author, theologian and jurist Johann Conrad Feuerlein, whose father was the distinguished theologian Konrad Feuerlein. Johann Feuerlein studied at Nuremberg, Altorf and Jena and in 1681 travelled, for the purposes of scientific research, through Germany Holland and England (when he perhaps acquired this book). He was the author of numerous theological works and, perhaps inspired by reading this, a history of the Nuremberg School published in 1699. We have not as yet managed to identify the finely worked gilt arms on the title though the initials suggest a member of the Feuerlein family. A very good copy.

STC 24405. ESTC S118780. Madan, I, p. 72. Lowndes 2730.

L1464

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PASQUIER, Etienne

Le Monophile, avecq’ quelques autres euvres d’amour…

Paris, Robert le Mangnier, 1566.

£2,850

8vo. ff. [iv] 147 [i]. Roman letter. Woodcut initials, printed side notes. Faint marginal dampstain to title and a few other leaves, occasional light age-yellowing, lower margins a little short, a clean and attractive copy in 17th-century French calf, contemporary gilt stamps of a Marquis’ arms on covers, spine gilt, speckled edges. Small neat repairs to lower corners and head and foot of spine, joints cracked, early inscription ‘A Monsr. de remiers’ on title. Bookplate of Paul Eluard by Max Ernst on pastedown.

An early and rare edition of Pasquier’s romantic work, probably shared with Vincent Norment and Jeanne Bruneau, from the library of the great Surrealist poet Paul Eluard, with his bookplate by Max Ernst. Pasquier, who lived well into his eighties, was a “viellard aimable et enjoué” and had fond memories of youth, particularly the pain engendered by love, which he indulged in producing a compilation of juvenilia under the title of La jeunesse de Pasquier. Pasquier’s literary pursuits predated his career as an ‘avocat’: “Lorsque j’arrivai au palais, ne trouvant qui me mist en besogne et n’estant né pour être oiseux, je me mis à faire des livres, mais livres conformes à mon age et l’honneste liberté que je portois sure le front”. This work is a collection of fables, songs, love letters, stories and dialogues written in honour of the real or ideal woman Pasquier was in love with, to whom it is dedicated. There is a second verse dedication to ladies in general. It was influenced by the Italian works on the philosophy of love fashionable at the time. Most of all, however, it is a discussion of the various aspects of relations between the sexes, largely in dialogue form between a girl and three young men, treating all aspects of love and lovers, and their different visions of them.

This copy is especially interesting for having belonged to the poet Eluard. Born Eugene Grindel, Eluard was one of the founding members and key figures in the Surrealist movement, and a prominent Resistance figure during the Occupation. One of the foremost French poets of the 20th century, his creative vocabulary was shaped by an absolute belief in love, but his poetry also has a dark edge. Eluard and Pasquier share a sense of the exaltation of the ‘puissance d’amour’, both poets celebrating emotional experience above ‘voluptuousness’ . Eluard’s work also finds its roots in a female muse, principally his two wives, Gala (who later married Dali) and Nusch (some of his most moving poems were written after the death of his wife, and are collected in Le temps déborde). Despite the gap of nearly four hundred years separating the two men, they are clearly close in their poetic vision of the supremacy of love, if not in their literary style. Eluard enjoyed a longstanding and close friendship with Ernst, an extraordinarily subtle painter, whose preoccupation with ‘primitive’ art, and psychology, led to his heavy use of the bird as a symbol. On Eluard’s bookplate, Ernst has interwoven his birds in a subtle array, to be viewed from a number of angles, the figure of the owl requiring the viewer to spare a ‘second look’.

Thickett 27; BM STC French, p. 340; Tchemerzine V, p. 78; Lemmonyer III, 267; cf. Brunet IV, p. 406 (Brunet notes that the first edition of this work is “fort rare”); not in Adams; or Graesse; one copy in the BN; Only two other copies are recorded, in the B.L. and the University of Chicago.

L469

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SCAPPUS, Antonius

De birreto rubeo dando Cardinalibus regularibus responsa

Rome, apud Georgium Ferrarium, 1592.

£1,750

FIRST EDITION 4to pp (viii) 90 (xxii). Roman letter, title in red and black with woodcut vignette of Saints Peter and Paul, woodcut initials and headpieces, four woodcut portraits of cardinals wearing the scarlet biretta with their arms, appropriately coloured in red, early underlining and marginal pen marks. T.p. foxed (a few small holds on blank), age browning to a few ll, light marginal foxing, small oil splash to blank fore edge of a final ll. Still an attractive copy in C17 vellum over boards, Autograph of J. T. Coleridge, Torrington Square, 1830′ on fly.

First and only early edition of this curious work of the Bolognese jurist Antonius Scappus, advocate of the Roman curia, dedicated to Pope Gregory XIV. It consists of nine questions and extensive answers, concerning the order and regulations relating to the wearing of the red biretta by cardinals of the Roman Church, giving copious references to Canon Law and historical sources. It appears to be a compilation of works on the somewhat esoteric subject as Responsi 1 – 2 and 4 -7 are described as of uncertain authorship, 3 is by Georgius Diedus, 8 by the fellow advocate Nicholas Angelius and 9 by Scappus himself. The work concludes with an extensive index. The biretta has been justly described as the second least practical form of male headgear, after the academic square or mortar board (which probably share a common ancestor) but it has been worn by clerics from cardinals downwards (generally black other than for cardinals – red, and bishops – violet) since late medieval times and its use is prescribed in detail in the liturgical rubrics both at mass and for other solemn ecclesiastical functions. Its form is subject to similar detailed regulations e.g. the absence of tassels. It is thought to be the originals of the black cap which, until relatively recently, English judges donned at the moment of pronouncing the death sentence. The red biretta however has always been the exclusive preserve of the College of Cardinals. Sir John Taylor Coleridge (1790-1876) was a grandson of Rev. John Coleridge, father of the great poet. He led a distinguished legal and judicial career with a considerable knowledge of ecclesiastical law. He was also a distinguished classicist and author (Life of Keble 1869, contributor to Stanley’s life of Arnold) and friend of Wordsworth, Arnold, Pusey, and Newman.

BM STC It. p. 617. Adams S 609 (1 copy only, lacking the woodcuts).

L1160

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COMMINES, Philippe de

 

An Epitome of All the Lives of the Kings of France.

London, I. Okes, 1639.

£950

FIRST EDITION 8vo. pp. (xiv), 344, (viii). Roman letter; elaborate engraved architectural frontispiece depicting allegories of kingship: cherubs above with a sceptre, crown and cornucopia; in the centre kings with an orb and cannon, a laurel-wreathed skeleton at foot with all the accoutrements of kingship at his feet (not in McKerrow or Johnson); 67 halfpage woodcut portraits of the kings in very good impression, some repeated; woodcut initials; C18 armorial bookplate of William Perceval on pastedown, his ex libris on fly and with case mark on title page, old bibliographical note attached to ffep. Title page. slightly dusty, two leaves of prelims a bit soiled toward fore edge, light age yellowing. A good, original copy in contemporary sheep, Perceval’s crest gilt on spine and unusually, gilt (faded) case mark beneath, upper joint nicked at head.

Unsophisticated first and only edition of the English epitome of the lives of the Kings of France from Pharamond First in 429 to Louis 13th in 1610, also mentioning “the famous battailes of the two kings of England, who were the first victorious princes that conquered France”. Beginning with an attractive woodcut portrait, each life discusses the King’s parentage, ascent to power and principal events of his reign. Any peculiarities, such as Clodion’s habit of wearing his hair long as a badge of kingship, are also recorded. A table of the names of all the Kings appears at the end. Frequently referring to contemporary authors on the same topics, the epitome is an eminently readable and detailed compendium of French Royal biographies, aiming to give accurate dates, particularly for the most recent kings, and track the minutiae of the succession as fully as possible.

Sometimes attributed to writer and diplomat Philippe de Commines (1447-1511), i.a. in the preface of this edition, though the period covered continues long after his death, it is more likely that ‘the French coppy’ used was the now lost “Histoire des anciens Rois de France” by courtier Nicolas Houel (1520-1587), sometime artistic adviser to Catherine de Medici, probably expanded here by translator Richard Brathwaite. Brathwaite, (1588?-1673) was an English poet and translator, the most memorable of whose works was “Drunken Barnaby’s Four Journeys,” a travelogue in rhyming Latin verse.

William Perceval was an Irish landowner whose family properties (by marriage) included Amherst Island west of Kingston, Ontario. His cousin, Spencer Perceval, was the only British Prime Minister to have been assassinated.

STC 11273.

L1371

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