KRACOW, Matthew of

KRACOW, Matthew of Confessionale seu libellus peroptimus..

Paris, Denis Roce, [n.d.]


8vo. 24 unnumbered ll (A-C8). Gothic letter, woodcut initials, large version of printer’s device on t.p. Early ms author note to t.p. Light age browning in places, a well margined and clean copy in modern paper over boards.

The confessional manual of Matthew of Kracow (ca. 1335-1410), although the printers ascribe it to St. Thomas Aquinas, and on the title page a C16th century owner has ascribed it to St. Bonaventura. The work includes descriptions of the appropriate mindset of the confessor, the frequency with which confessions should be given, but the bulk of the work considers the nature of sin and the myriad of sins confessors will hear of, in the style of the typical casuistry manual. Among others discussed are: vainglory, lust, unintended sins, decisions that lead others to sin, and “complacency with the memory of sin”, “idle words”. The work concludes with a broad discussion of the natural of sin, how to identify it, and finally a useful table of contents to the whole for quick and easy reference.

We have not been able to locate other copies, although this might be a variant of USTC 183882 printed in Paris, Bernard Aubry, 1518 at the Bibliotheque Nationale, as Roce worked with Aubry and the collation is identical. L1454.
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