Grida sopra il datio Della Carne, Pesce, & Oglio & dell’Estrattione de gl’Animali.

Modena, Per Giulian Cassiani Stampator Ducale, 1636.


FIRST EDITION. Single sheet, 43 x 32cm. Roman letter. Woodcut arms of Francesco I d’Este as Duke of Modena and Reggio, decorated initial. Uniform light browning, edges uncut, a little dusty, horizontal centre fold. An exceptionally well-preserved copy, ‘80’ pencilled to upper blank margin.

An exceptionally well-preserved (and probably the only surviving) copy of the first edition of this ‘grida’ concerning taxes imposed on meat, fish, oil and their export. The ‘gride’ were ordnances or edicts issued by the authorities, which were then ‘gridate’ (declaimed loudly) by criers in squares to inform citizens. The present was issued to provide partial relief to the ducal coffers after difficult years including the plague of 1630-1, which killed over 40% of Modena’s inhabitants, and the Thirty Years’ War. By September 1636, when the ‘grida’ was issued, Modena had first been prey to winter raids of grain and fodder by the French troops lodged in Parma, and had then participated in the invasion of Parma alongside the Spanish troops. The ‘grida’ sought ‘extraordinary help’ due to the ‘excessive expense caused by the ongoing wars’. It forbad, within the walls of Modena, the killing of ‘oxen, cows, beeves, calves, goats, kids, lambs, sheep, pigs and gelding’ anywhere but in public slaughterhouses, at the price of 4 quattrini a pound to be paid to the taxman. Fines for transgressors included the seizing of the animals, and a payment of 50 or 25 scudi, according to the size of the animal; the ‘snitch’, if there was one, retained anonymity. Exempt was the killing for family use of pigs, kids or lambs, which had not been bought or acquired by exchange, or their killing (by anyone, except butchers) at Easter, from Good Friday to the Resurrection. Any sale or transport of oil as well as live or dead, salted or unsalted fish was subject to 6 quattrini a pound. For everyone the export, from the Duchy to or through foreign states, of the abovementioned animals plus poultry, and derived products, including ‘dead meat’ like salame or sausages, was also banned. Exemption existed for shepherds, though they had to request a license. The ‘grida’ included a list of fines, in Bolognini, for the export of poultry—i.e., peacocks, geese, capons and pigeons. It was printed by the ‘stampatore ducale’ Giuliano Cassiani. An esteemed printer of literary and legal works, as ‘stampatore ducale’ he ‘monopolised the printing of all government acts, including grida and bandi’; he also printed the first Modenese newspaper, ‘Avvisi’, first published in 1648 (Pugno, ‘Trattato’, 90).

No recorded copies in major institutional catalogues or bibliographies.

Saggio di una bibliografia di Modena, p.269. Not in EDIT16, USTC, Simon, Oberlé, Bitting or Vicaire. G.M. Pugno, Trattato di cultura generale nel campo della stampa (1968).


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[Ledger of the Company of Bakers, Millers and Gingerbread Makers].

Manuscript, Czech, early 17th to early 19th century.


Half folio. ff. 113 (one blank, 2 pp. of text on pastedowns), five initial stubs. Ms, in Czech, occasional Latin, in black-brown ink, over a dozen secretary hands, typically 20 to 40 lines per page. Somewhat browned, minor water stain to lower margin, a few sections crossed out or a bit smudged, occasional thumb marks, edges dusty, teeth mark to fore-edge of first two ll. with very slight loss, small ink splash to upper fore-edge of first few gatherings, single small worm hole at head of first few gatherings. A very good, remarkably well-preserved copy, on thick paper, in Bohemian calf c.1600, four ties, triple blind ruled to a panel design, outer border of small heads within roundels and tendrils in blind, centre, upper and lower panels with interlacing fleurons, raised bands, spine in four compartments, upper joint slightly detached but firm, some worming and minor loss to extremities.

Beautifully bound Czech ms.—a rare and remarkable witness to the world of provincial guilds in early modern Europe. It is a working ledger, for quick note taking and reckoning, used by the Company of Bakers, Millers and Gingerbread Makers of Slany (or Kladno), a few miles north-west of Prague. It features over one hundred leaves of notes, in several hands, concerning payments to the guild by its members, spanning two centuries.

Half of the ms. text was written in the C17. This ms. provides a fascinating picture of the small community of bakers and millers who operated in Kladno. Whilst Prague had over 100 bakers in the early C17, it is reasonable to think a small town like Slany did not have more than 10 (Janáček, ‘Dejiny obchodu’). Bakers and millers were, historically, connected professions; in smaller cities, as here, they could share the same corporation or confraternity (Patkova, ‘Bratrstvie’, 122). Bakers could employ their own millers to grind flour which could only be used for making bread and not for sale as such (Winter, ‘Remeslnictvo’, 643-44).

The baker Adam Sobotka, and the millers Jan Oliwa, the Jirašeks, Jan and Waclaw Kozak and the Cynt family are among those mentioned in the first half of the C17. Their names appear with others at the bottom of several annotations, as they were, in turn, part of the company’s council, renewed every year (Lacina, ‘Pameti’, 60). Their businesses were interconnected. For instance, we know that Adam Sobotka and his wife Dorota bought a bakery from Jan Jirašek in 1594; Dorota later sold it after Adam’s death (Lacina, ‘Pameti’, 292).

Each entry features the year, the date, a brief summary of the occasion of specific payments or donations to the company. Many are concerned with the company’s devotional activities, some for specific feasts (e.g., St Lucas Evangelist or St John Nepomuk). In particular, in addition to cash payments, many record payments or donations in pounds of wax. Guilds typically owned chapels or chantries in churches, which they kept illuminated with expensive beeswax candles; the largest candles could weigh up to 30 pounds (Richardson, ‘Craft Guilds’, 149). Members were required to contribute to expenses regularly, usually quarterly—hence the regular but not too crowded entries in this ms. As here, wax was given for celebrations ‘for the dead’ and ‘in good memory’, to commemorate deceased members or relatives. In one case the money was donated by a furrier, outside the company, probably related to a member of the guild. Due to the high cost, payments in wax were also used as a punitive fine for the infringement of the company’s regulations, including absence from commemorations, or upon someone’s appointment to an office (Richardson, ‘Craft Guilds’, 156-57), as happens in the ms. when Mathaus Jiška was introduced as a baker. Sometimes a different hand crossed out a note or added ‘solutum’ or ‘dedit’ (paid) below, meaning that this book was of official standing, but also for quick reference. Though the hands are many, they often repeat themselves in the course of a short period; also, in some notes the author refers to himself in the first person (e.g., ‘the money was given to me’). He was probably treasurer in that year.

A fascinating insight into the life of the skilled artisan in early modern Europe.

Janáček, Dejiny obchodu v predebelohorské Praze (Prague, 1955); J. Janáček, Pivovarnictví v českych královskych mestech v 16. Století (Prague, 1959); Z. Winter, Remeslnictvo a živnosti XVI. veku v Čechách (1526-1620) (Prague, 1909); H. Patkova, Bratrstvie ke cti Božie (Prague, 2000); G. Richardson, ‘Craft Guilds and Christianity in Late-Medieval England’, Rationality and Society 17 (2005), 139-89; J. Lacina, Pameti kralovskeho mesta Slaneho (Slany, 1885).


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Stratto de doganieri et passaggieri del contado et distretto di Fiorenza. [with] Sommario della riforma della dogana di Fiorenza.

Florence, G. Marescotti, 1578 and [1580?]


4to. 2 works in 1, 100 unnumbered ff., [*4] Cc2 Bb1, A-Z4, Aa4, 8 unnumbered ll., A4. Roman letter, little Greek. Woodcut Medici arms to both t-ps, decorated initials. Small clean tear to outer margin of t-p, occasional very minor mainly marginal foxing, four gatherings browned (paper not properly dried), ink splash at gutter of first and last few gatherings. A very good copy in C16 quarter goatskin over bevelled wooden boards, raised bands, C17 eps, traces of label to spine, a little loss to leather on upper cover, head and foot a bit rubbed, the odd worm hole, with minor loss to outer edge of upper cover. Extensive annotations by Fortunio de Baroncelli 1610 to ffeps, occasionally elsewhere.

Very scarce works on customs, taxes and duties in C16 Florence. Originally published in 1546 and revised in 1571, the first contains lists of goods of all kinds accompanied by the related customs duties (in ‘lire’, ‘soldi’ and ‘danari’). Each item—from carnations to wood, wrought iron, sugar, chestnuts, hats, the ‘art of wool’ or animal skin—is broken down into customs duties for import or export: e.g., destined to Florence, for exit or entry from and to the territory of Pisa, Florence or Arezzo, or to be carried through the passages of Montecchio and San Miniato. This copy belonged to the customs officer Fortunio, son of Angelo de Baroncelli, who needed to master the sundry regulations. His first ‘office’ was at the customs of Castelfiorentino, a job he took up on 4 August 1610. He added notes concerning the specific custom taxes on animals, caps and furry hats and spun wool; the five customs locations (Santa Croce, Santa Maria in Monte, Montopoli, Castelfanco and Fucecchio); and further notes on sundry types of skin. He also noted the ‘prohibited’ (i.e., untaxable) items, originating in the territory of Florence, which should not be burdened with duties—from leather to oil, wool, silk and straw hats. Straw hats are especially interesting as these were a typical product of the area. The last sections are devoted to the duties of customs officers, items that cannot be taxed, procedures and the individual taxes for each passage in Tuscany. The second work in this sammelband, very similar to but shorter than the first, is a summary of the customs reforms of 1580. A very scarce manual for customs officers and a mine of information on the history of commerce and taxation.

I) Only six copies recorded on WorldCat and OPAC, none in the US.

BM STC It., p. 257; Annali dei Marescotti, 111. Not in Goldsmiths or Kress.

II) Only five copies recorded on WorldCat and OPAC, none in the US.

BM STC It., p. 257. Not in Goldsmiths or Kress.


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LE FLUX DISSENTERIQUE des bourses financieres, ou, La dissenterie des financiers : ensemble le Salué regine desdits financiers à la royne mere.

[Paris?] np., npr., 1624.

RESPONSORIUM au Salve Regina des financiers

Paris [npr., nd. 1624?]


FIRST EDITIONS. 8vo. Two works. 8vo. 1) pp 16. A-B8. 2) pp. 8. A4. Roman and Italic letter. Light age yellowing, title of first a little dusty. Both works mounted as pamphlets within larger sheets of paper.

Exceptionally rare and interesting polemical pamphlets concerning financiers, one in the form a allegorical medical satire, and the other a direct response to a previous pamphlet issued on behalf on financiers calling for help from the Queen after they had incurred heavy losses to their investments. The financiers plight was also closely linked to the extraordinary struggle for power taking place in France that culminated in Cardinal Richelieu becoming de facto ruler of France. Richelieu had supported the Marquis de la Vieuville to a place on the council and obtained a position for him as ‘Surintendent des Finances’. De Vieuville had the support of the major financiers of France, and headed “the first government of the financial plutocracy in the History of France”.A. D. Lublinskaya ‘French Absolutism: The Crucial Phase, 1620-1629’. His position on the council lasted less that a year, Richelieu joining the council himself in April 1624, within three months ousteding La Vieuville,  and taking the role as head of the council in August. It is possible that these pamphlets were also written as part of a propaganda campaign against the financiers organised by Richelieu.

The first work takes the form of an allegorical medical satire in which the Financiers, suffering from terrible indigestion having gorged themselves excessively, find a cure thanks to the intervention of the “grand Operateur’, the reparation of the abuses they have committed, and the intercession of “Marie” (the Queen Mother) to whom they address a Salve Regina. “Apres avoir mangé tant de raisins & de figues durnat les vendanges dernieres que la dissenterie si est mise á la malheure, ce ne sont pas figues d’Esope, mais bien d’autres en plus grande quantité dont la fieuvre leas en a pris , d’une tel facon que la pluspart avec de grans efforts vomissent les grappes de raisin & les figues encore toutes entieres”. The pamphlet goes on to state that the cure for such an illness does not require much medical intervention, simply the adoption of a reasonable and healthy diet, that does not over abuse. The work ends with a the poem “La prierre ou Salve Regine des Financiers” in which the financiers admit their fault and demand pardon for their crimes, that merit either hanging or imprisonment, but hope for clemency from the Queen.

The second work is a direct rebuttal of the clemency and bailout demanded by the financiers in the “Salve Regina” stating that that financiers themselves showed no mercy for the orphans, widows and the people of France that they bled dry. In it an adversary of Tax collectors declares “Vous demandez qu’on aye compassion de vos misseres, & des calamitez qui vous pendent sur le Chef: Et que seront donc les clameurs de tant de pauvres Orphelins, desquels vous avez succé la substance? A quoy les plainctes de tant de Veufues que vous avez rongez iusques aux os? & les cris de tout le peuple qui gemit soubs le faix pesant de vos extorsions & pilleries? Non, non n’esperez aucune misericorde du Roy, ny de la Reyne Mere; il ne vous peut pardonner sans faire une injustice à toute la France, qui veut voir le fonds de vos bourses, puis que vous avez voulu voir le fonds de ses coffres”.

Both these pamphlets are exceptionally rare. We have found only one copy of the second at the BNF and two of the first at Newberry and Yale. Most interesting and most topical works.

1) Lindsay & Neu. French political pamphlets, 5104. Alain Mercier. ‘La littérature facétieuse sous Louis XIII: 1610-1643 : une blibiographie.’ 298 2) Alain Mercier. ‘La littérature facétieuse sous Louis XIII: 1610-1643 : une blibiographie.’ 298


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ANTWERP [broadsheet]

Gheboden ende uutgheropen, 20.12.1590. Alsoo verboden ende schandaleuse boecken bevonden worden, dat niemandt in eenighe sterf-huysen noch oude-cleercoopers gheen boecken en sullen vercoopen ten zy de selve zijn ghevisiteert ende ghepermitteert

Antwerpen, Jan I Moretus, 1590.


Large Folio ff. [1]. Gothic and Roman letter. Woodcut arms of the town of Antwerp above, large scrolled woodcut initial. Very sight age yellowing with a few very minor creases to corners. A fine copy, clean and crisp, with full margins as issued.

A very fine copy of this most interesting broadside, a remarkable survival in such condition, concerning the regulation of sale of second hand books in the town of Antwerp, printed by Plantin’s successor Jan Moretus. The broadside concerns a crack down on the selling of second hand or old books in the town of Antwerp as many of these books were now prohibited or considered scandalous. Antwerp had been the town at the forefront of the Protestant rebellion until it was taken back by the forces of Alessandro Farnesse, Duke of Ferrara, five years before this broadside in 1585. Protestant citizens were then given two years to settle their affairs before many of them left for the United provinces. This probably meant that there were still many protestant or anti-catholic works in the town that then freely circulated on the death of their previous owners.

The full translation of the broadsheet was very kindly provided for us by Arthur der Weduwen “Ordained and proclaimed by my lords the under-sheriff Grammaye, Burgomasters, Aldermen, and Council of the city of Antwerp, on 20 December 1590. As it is observed that various prohibited and scandalous books have been found in several houses of the recently deceased, which are there sold to the public, and that the old-clothes hawkers sell the same, as if they were good and proper [books], and that by the same old-clothes hawkers, and others with intent to sell old books, buy these books, in order to sell them on their fronts and in their shops, so that the common man reads, sees and buys the same books, thereby offended, degraded and scandalised, which in a city of good order should not be allowed nor condoned. THEREFORE one ordains and orders as above, that no-one in any houses of the recently deceased, nor any old-clothes hawkers, or others with intent to sell old books, henceforth is allowed to sell any books, neither in their shops or on their fronts, unless they have been visited, inspected and permitted by the lords commissaries of the aforementioned visitation: on the pain of loss of said books, and above that further arbitrary punishments, in relation to the particular circumstances.”

One of the very few broadsides concerning the book-trade to have survived. Of huge interest and exceptionally rare; USTC lists five copies of this sheet all of them in Belgium, three of those at Antwerp itself.

USTC 414069


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Orders and directions, together with a commission for the better administration of iustice: how, and by whom the lawes and statutes tending to the reliefe of the poore, the well ordering and training vp of youth in trades, and the reformation of disorders and disordered persons, are executed throughout the kingdome.

London, Robert Barker, printer to the Kings most excellent Maiestie: and by the assignes of Iohn Bill, 1630 (i.e. 1631).


FIRST EDITION, third issue. 4to. pp. (iv), 33, (xxi) 17 (i). A-I4, K2. first leaf blank but for signature. Roman and Italic letter. Full page woodcut arms of Charles I on verso of title page, large historiated woodcut initials, historiated and grotesque woodcut head and tail-pieces. Light age yellowing, verso of last fractionally dusty. A very good copy, crisp and clean in excellent speckled calf c. 1900 by Riviere, covers bordered with a triple gilt rule, spine with raised bands, richly gilt in compartments red morocco label, inner dentelles and edges gilt, a.e.r.

Important third issue of the first edition of Charles I landmark “Book of Orders” concerning the treatment of the poor, vagabonds, drunkards, unmarried families, poverty, corn hoarding, famine and pestilence, of tremendous social, political and historic interest: this issue has been partially reset and reimposed from the first two editions and it adds a list of Privy Councilors and Justices allotted to each circuit not previously printed. As described in its introduction, the purpose of The Book was to ensure “better administration of justice (…) relief of the poor and (…) reformation of disorders”, greatly increasing the control of Charles’ government over what had until then been largely local affairs handled by the local gentry.

The book directed the Justices of the peace in measures for the control and relief of the poor, and dealt with issues such as vagrancy, alehouses, the binding out or apprenticing of pauper children and houses of correction. To guarantee the due implementation of these orders, Justices of the Peace were to hold monthly divisional meetings and to provide the sheriff with quarterly reports. A royal commission or privy councillors was established to oversee the whole operation. “Poor laws were instituted by many sixteenth-century European governments: Catholic and Protestant, urban provincial and national. The legislation had two main focuses: first, regulating the supply of relief by reforms of medieval hospitals and almshouses, and by statutory provision for the “worthy” poor, second controlling demand for relief by punitive measures against the “unworthy”, especially the able bodied who begged, who were defined as vagabonds.

The English legislation included several components, including settlement acts and vagrancy regulations, as well as poor relief provisions. There is considerable evidence of the enforcement of the poor laws under the early Stuarts. The ‘Book of Orders’ of 1630 was the most comprehensive attempt to date to enforce the legislation. Large numbers of vagrants were arrested – about 25,000 between 1631 and 1639, according to reports by county officials to the privy council. There is also considerable evidence of of the implementation of poor relief in the 1630s. Of course the orders of 1630 were not unprecedented. Similar action was taken after four poor harvests between 1594 and 1597 and following Elizabethan legislation in 1598 and 1601. It was in the 1620’s that widespread enforcement began, which suggests that the orders of 1630 were building on established foundations”. Ronald H. Fritze “Historical Dictionary of Stuart England, 1603-1689”.

Charles I’s ‘Book of Orders’ did more to establish a national system of “Poor Relief” than any previous edict. A very good copy of an important work.


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WILSON, Thomas

A Discourse upon Usurie.

London, Roger Warde, 1584


8vo. ff (xvi) 201 (iii) Black letter, two large historiated woodcut initials, contemp. autograph Richard Crakenthorp on title, faint C19 library stamp of the Birmingham Law Society on B1 and O3; general age yellowing, mostly light. A good, clean, well margined copy in full modern calf antique.

Second and last contemporary edition of Thomas Wilson’s classic work on all aspects of usury in the form of a dialogue or, more accurately, speeches made between a rich merchant, a zealous preacher and a civil lawyer. This is the first authoritative work on the then vigorously debated subject by an English author and provides considerable insight into the economic life of Elizabethan England as well as a history of usorial prohibitions . Wilson himself was a doctor of civil law and sometime master of the court of Requests, unsurprisingly therefore, the lawyer has the best part. Wilson’s professional background does bear fruit however as no common lawyer of the period would have been able to cite so freely the legal writers of ancient Rome, of the mediaeval schools and of modern European jurisprudence. The tone of the work is more practical than academic however, with propositions explained and justified by the use of practical and financial examples. What is particularly interesting to the modern reader are the techniques employed not to contravene the usury laws whilst still financing transactions and earning a good return on one’s money. If these rules did nothing else they gave rise to a wide range of very sophisticated commercio-financial arrangements which otherwise would not have seen the light of day for centuries to come. The autograph on the title is almost certainly Richard Crakenthorpe’s (1567-1624) Protestant divine and author of three published works, all controversial and anti Catholic, and “Popish Falsifications” that has survived in ms. only. See Milward p. 237.

STC. 25808. Kress I 159. Goldsmiths 227.


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LOREDANO, Bernardino (i.e. SIGONIO Carlo)


In M. Tullii Ciceronis orationes de lege agraria contra P. Seruilium Rullum Tribunum pl. commentarius.

Venice, Paulus Manutius, Aldi, June 1558.


4to. pp. 297, (iii). A-2O⁴, 2P². Roman letter, some Greek. Woodcut Aldine device on title, capitals spaces with guide letters, bookplate of Baron Landau on pastedown. A very good copy, crisp clean and wide margined in contemporary limp vellum, later endpapers.

FIRST EDITION of this interesting commentary on Cicero’s orations on land reform, spoken against the tribune of the plebs P. Servilius Rullus, beautifully printed by the Aldine press. Cicero opposed Rullus’ bill, which proposed to use money from foreign conquests to purchase land in Italy for the establishment of colonies of the poor. He was instinctively against what he saw as the calculated bribery of the Roman electorate, and politically he supported Pompey who also opposed the act.

Cicero delivered four speeches, of which three are still extant, although the first was passed on mutilated. The second is the most important, and nothing is known of the fourth. Very little enthusiasm was shown towards the land bill by the Roman people, who preferred the distribution of doles in the city to the prospect of distant allotments outside urban areas. The work had important resonance in Renaissance Italy and Europe, especially when it came to the redistribution of land and wealth between public or private hands.

“The most forceful Roman opponent of the agrarian movement was, however, Marcus Tullius Cicero. … In short, Cicero characterizes the agrarian movement as seditious, dangerous, and violently unjust. For what is an agrarian law, he asks in De officiis, but an initiative ‘to rob one man of what belongs to him and to give to another man what does not belong to him?’ For Cicero, as for so many other Roman writers, agrarian laws driven by plebeian envy had disrupted the concordia of the Roman republic, given rise to factions, and ultimately dismembered the body politic. This conviction had profound consequences for the shape of early-modern political theory. The influence of the Roman sources (and of Cicero in particular) was so pervasive among civic humanists that the rejection of agrarian laws (or “levelling,” as the English had it) became a powerful republican orthodoxy.” Eric Nelson “‘For the land is Mine’:The Hebrew Commonwealth and the Rise of Redistribution.”

Sigonio (1524-1585), Italian historian and classicist, was the author of numerous scholarly works held in high esteem by his contemporaries. He was born in Modena and held professorships at universities in Venice, Padua, and Bologna. “He was unquestionably one of the first classical antiquaries of his time, and a man of great judgement as well as learning, very correct and deep in researches, and of most unwearied diligence.” Chalmers. Sigonius’ reputation chiefly rests upon his publications on Greek and Roman antiquities, which remain insightful by present standards. A very good copy with an excellent provenance. Baron Landau was a C19 collector of early books of impeccable taste.

BM STC It. C16th p. 180 (Cicero) and p. 372 (Lauredanus ie Carolus Sigonius). Renouard. 174:8.


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TUNSTALL, Cuthbert


De artes supputandi, libri quator.

Strasbourg, Knoblock per Georg Machaerop, 1544.


8vo. pp. (xxiv) 454. Roman and Italic letter, woodcut initials, numerical diagrams throughout. Title page and verso of last slightly dusty, slight damp staining to blank margin of final gathering. Contemporary manuscript ex libris in English italic hand to title page. “T. Liliat’ with Greek inscription, C18 armorial bookplate of William Constable F.R.S – F.A.S. on pastedown. A clean and well margined copy in C17 tan calf, triple-ruled panels in blind with roll-stamped floral motif to one side on covers, richly gilt spine in five ruled compartments with raised bands, C18 paper shelf mark pasted to spine, a handsome copy, all edges red.

The first English book wholly on arithmetic, by the great Catholic humanist, Cuthbert Tunstall (1474 – 1559). The work was Tunstall’s farewell to secular scholarship as he was made Bishop of London a few days after its publication, and thereafter Lord Privy Seal. It is designed as a practical work on arithmetic with the emphasis on commercial transactions, undoubtedly based on models Tunstall encountered during his studies in Padua. “The book includes many business applications of the day, such as partnership, profit and loss and exchange. It also includes the rule of false, the rule of three and numerous applications of these and other rules. It is, however, the work of a scholar and a classicist rather than a businessman.” (Smith p.134, of 1st ed). “He wrote it so that his friends could be empowered to make their own calculations and no longer be cheated by money changers.” (Trapp & Herbrüggen cit infr.).

It is dedicated to his friend Thomas More, who the previous year had been appointed Sub-Treasurer of England, because there was no more appropriate dedicatee than the man engaged in supervising the finances of the King. “The dedicatory epistle to M[ore], gives an interesting picture of M[ore] and Tunstall.” Gibson 157. This was also the return of the compliment which, six years earlier, More had paid Tunstall in the opening lines of the ‘Utopia.’ The work was actually rather too scholarly for ordinary businessmen and it was not reprinted in England. However, it achieved some success on the continent and Rabelais (Oeuvres II 222) mentions it as required reading for the young Gargantua in Paris; it was also prescribed as an arithmetical study text in the Oxford statues of 1549, together with Cardano.

Thomas Liliat graduated MA and Batchelor of Divinity from Christ Church Oxford in the 1550s becoming successfully rector of Houghton in Northamptonshire and Westley in Suffolk. He knew enough Greek to adapt Aristotle’s quip about Plato’s lack of scientific knowledge, in the original, on the title page. An interesting example of a continental imprint of English authorship returning to England soon after publication, Tunstall having fallen into political incorrectness at home in the interim.

William Constable (1783 – 1806) was an avid naturalist and collector of natural history curiosities. In 1775 he was elected fellow of the Royal Society and his Cabinet of Curiosities is still on display at his family estate, Burton Constable Hall in Yorkshire.

Trapp & Herbrüggen, “The King’s good servant” n. 56. Smith, Rara Arithmetica p. 136.


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FRANCOIS I [with] ARENA, Antoine


Ordonnances du (…) Francois premier en ce pays de Provence, Forcalquier et terres adjacentes. (with) Les Taux, moderations, emoluments des greffiers (…) avocats du pays de Provence.

Avignon, Jean de Channey 1536-40 (with) Lyon, Thibault Paen, 1540.


Folio. Two volumes in one. ff 105 (xiii). A-T6 V4: ff. (xviii). A-D4 E2. Lettre Bâtard. Both titles within ornate woodcut architectural borders with putti, second with woodcut printer’s device incorporating the royal arms, fine large floriated gothic woodcut initials, with smaller white on black criblé in several series, engraved bookplate of Albert Pascal on pastedown. Uniform light age yellowing. Very good, clean copies in C19th olive morocco, spine with raised bands, inner dentelles richly gilt, by Allô. a.e.g.

A rare, handsome and important compilation of laws relating to the administration of justice in the south of France under Francois I, with reforming edicts for particular places, such as Marseilles. They cover all aspects of practice and procedure, the initiation of proceedings, appeals, vacations, relative jurisdictions, rights and duties of all sorts of officers and counsel and the exercise of Royal authority. There is a particular abundance of material on those perennial legal topics of costs, charges and fees.

The court of the Parlement of Aix was established by Louis II of Provence in 1415, but after the union of Provence with the crown in 1498, Louis XII decided to reform its administration of justice, using the Parlement of Paris as model. At first, the Count of Provence’s administration remained essentially in place, and the new Parlement remained subject to the Governor of Provence. This intermediary situation provoked some unrest and anxious to better ensure his authority, Francis I introduced these edicts in 1534 (first published in 1535), restricting the powers of the Governor, and bringing the Parlement directly under Royal control, which lasted until the Revolution.

These edicts cover administration of the Parliament at every level, the election of officials (from the President down), raising and organizing the ‘Gendarmerie’, the organization of the ‘Legions’, and the fining and punishment of criminals. The work finishes with an interesting edict on the running of the justice system in the town of Marseille with its special privileges and exemptions.

For some reason the Ordonnances are quite often found bound with one or more other works, including Arena’s, which lists the remuneration and privileges of lawyers and judges at the Parlement of Aix. A list of the names of all the towns subject to the jurisdiction of the Parlement d’Aix is given at the end, introduced in Provençal. A very good copy of a rare work.

Fairfax Murray Fr. Vol II 411. Brunet II 388. Not in BM STC Fr.


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