Book of Hours, Use of Rome, in Latin and French. Ces presentes heures sont a lusaige de Romme toutes au long sans requerir.

[Paris: Germain Hardouyn, 1534].


8vo. 100 unnumbered leaves, A-M8, N4. 28 lines. Letter Bâtard. 15 large half page metalcuts, all freely illuminated in gold and colours by a contemporary hand, gold-painted architectural borders, ruled in red, to each large cut, borders to each page ruled in red painted with gold, entirely rubricated with liquid-gold initials and line-filler on alternate red and blue grounds, nine vellum leaves of additional prayers in Latin  (Gratiarum actio sanctissimae & individuae trinitati) and German in two later hands. A1r, title with Hardouin device, his printer’s device with shield overpainted with arms of the first owner, with two keys, painted architectural border, title manuscript in gold on red painted ground, sprays of flowers and laurels to the sides, A1v with verses in French beginning ‘Ohostie tressalutaire’, A2r almanac for 1534-1548, A2r-B1r calendar, B1v-3v Gospel sequence (one large cut), B3r-C3r Passion according to St. John (one large cut), C3r-E1r Hours of the Virgin (two large cuts), E1v-E2r Hours of the Cross and of the Holy Ghost (large cut of Crucifixion), E2v-H1v Office of the Immaculate Conception and Beata Maria (seven large cuts), H2r-I2v Seven Penitential Psalms (large cut Bathsheba), I3r-K1r Office of the Dead (cut of Job on his dungheap), K1v-N4r Suffrages, prayers to the saints, hours of the Virgin, Stabat Mater, N4r-v, table of contents, early autograph illegible at foot of title page, book plate of G. Nordback on pastedown. Vellum very fractionally yellowed in places, painting to outer margin of title a little rubbed, very rare marginal thumb mark. A very good, clean copy with the painting and gold absolutely fresh and clean, in early C17th black morocco, covers bordered with double gilt rule, fleurons gilt to corners, spine with gilt-ruled raised bands, richly gilt in compartments fleurons to centres, initials F. T. gilt to centre of lower compartment, all edges gilt. A little rubbed and scratched.

Extremely rare, finely printed and beautifully illuminated Book of Hours, on good quality vellum with the cuts finely illuminated in gold and colour in a small rectangular format. The illuminator has not simply coloured the cuts beneath, but has freely painted over them or extended the painting of the figures beyond the original borders. Books of Hours were used by individuals at home rather than in church. A calendar was attached to the front so that memorial days of the saints could be identified. They were typically structured around the hourly prayers observed in monasteries, and Catholics would recite the appropriate liturgy eight times a day. These books served as symbols of status and and were often luxurious items, gifts given on important occasions.

“An important point to notice in connection with the illustrations of French ‘Books of Hours’ at this time is that they are nearly all inspired by German artists and nearly all copied from illuminated MSS.” Joseph Cundall. ‘A Brief History of Wood engraving.’

The Hardouin’s workshop dominated the market of printed Books of Hours in Paris between 1510 and 1550. Gillet Hardouin worked primarily as a printer, between 1500 and 1542, and German Hardouin was registered in the Guild of Illuminators. They were the only editors capable of both printing and illumination without commissioning other professionals. They often used fine, densely ornamented metal cut borders, however they had gone out of fashion by the time this volume was produced, which gives it a much cleaner and clearer style than its early incarnations.

The quality of their work is remarkable. It seems that they produced Books of Hours in various formats, from ordinary copies printed on paper, to those printed on vellum with woodcuts, and the most luxurious where the entire book was illuminated over the original cuts, most often on commission for a specific client for whom the book was tailored, as here where the client has had his personal arms painted on the title. Extremely rare: we have found no other copy of this edition in any online catalogues or at auction. Bohatta cites a copy seen in a private collection. Lacombe cites two other editions by Hardouyn of the same year, also for the use of Rome, but with different collations, both less substantial than this edition.

The arms on the title are very similar to those Baron Etienne de Clugny’s ( Guigard II 149), and it is probable that this work was commissioned by an earlier generation of his family. Unfortunately, we have not discovered the owner of the initials F.T. on the binding. A very rare and beautiful work.

Bohatta 1170. Not in Lacombe.


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Book of Hours, Use of Rome, in Latin, illuminated manuscript on vellum.

Flanders, 3rd quarter of the 15th-century.


Small 8vo., 96 x 68 mm, 223 leaves on parchment, including 13 added leaves (fols 1, 10, 24, 48, 64, 71, 78, 85, 92, 103, 112, 124, 151), without the calendar, two leaves after fol. 17, the first added to the original collation, and some additions to the text at end; collation: I8+1, II8+2 (viii and leaf added after vii excised at the end), III6, IV8+1, V8, VI8+1, VII8, VIII8+1, IX-X8, XI8+2, XII8, XIII-XV8+1, XVI-XVII8, XVIII6, XIX8+1, XX-XXV8, XXVI8+2, XXVII4, XXVIII4-2 (iii-iv excised), traces of catchwords in lower margin of last verso of quires (see fols 49v, 94v, 102v, 145v, 167v, 175v and 183v). Justification 50 x 33 mm, ruled in purple for single vertical bounding lines and 16 horizontal lines for 15 written lines below top ruled line. Regular Gothic bookhand (Textualis Rotunda Formata) in brown and red, possibly by an Italian scribe. Rubrics in red; versal initials (1-line high) in blue or gold with red or black pen-work decoration throughout; psalm and prayers initials (2-line high) in burnished gold-leaf set against a square ground of blue and red with white tracery throughout; 13 large illuminated book-initials and full decorated borders on fols 2r, 11r, 25r, 49r, 65r, 72r, 79r, 86r, 93r, 104r, 113r, 125r and 152r: initials (5-line high) in blue or red with white tracery decoration set against burnished gold-leaf grounds infilled with ivy-leaves decoration in blue, red, purple and green highlighted with white tracery, borders decorated with acanthus and other leaves, strawberries and flowers in gold, blue, red, pink and green, gold bar framing text on left, right and lower border, reserved white ground of the borders on fols 2r and 25r with added shell-gold; 13 full-page miniatures in the style of the Mildmay Master, with double-bar and arch-topped frames in burnished gold and purple set within full decorated borders on fols 1v, 10v, 24v, 48v, 64v, 71v, 78v, 85v, 92v, 103v, 112v, 124v, 151v: borders decorated as above, with reserved white ground of borders on fols 1v and 24v with added shell-gold, miniatures illustrating the Crucifixion, Pentecost, Annunciation, Visitation, Nativity, Annunciation to the Shepherds, Adoration of the Magi, Presentation in the Temple, Massacre of the Innocents, Flight to Egypt, Coronation of the Virgin, King David in prayer and Raising of Lazarus. Good quality parchment, well preserved, margins slightly trimmed, little sign of thumbing in lower right corners. Sewn on three spine bands of double-split alum-tawed skin and with bookblock edges gilt and gauffered, late fifteenth or early sixteenth century; in brown morocco with blind-fillet decoration on thin wooden boards, re-cased probably in 16th century, newer parchment flyleaf and conjoint pastedown at the beginning and the end. In modern brown cloth box. Some worming on boards and flyleaves only.

This charming Book of Hours was produced in Bruges. It is a fine representative of the devotional manuscripts from the second half of the 15th century. These books were the result of the work of a number of different artisans and artists working separately on the different phases of production – the copying of the text, the decoration of minor initials and line fillers, and the illumination of initials, borders and miniatures. The devotional texts were usually copied on dedicated single or multiple quires according to their length, with the beginnings of the canonical hours copied on rectos; they were then assembled in volumes whose textual sequences corresponded to the requirements of the individual customers, with dedicated miniatures inserted to face the beginning of the canonical hours and other illumination and decoration added to the clients’ taste and means. All the illuminated miniatures of the present manuscript are on the verso of added singletons whose parchment is often heavier and thicker than the soft and beautiful parchment of the quires, which shows hardly any visible difference between the flesh and the hair side.

It is therefore unusual to find manuscripts made by the same scribe, rubricator, decorator and illuminator/s, but each of their components may find matches in different manuscripts. This manuscript shows the same textual and illustrative sequence as London, British Library, MSS Harley 1853 and Stowe 26, but for the absence of the Mass of the Virgin and perhaps of the Psalter of St Jerome at the end. The three manuscripts are also similarly diminutive. Its beautiful Italianate Gothic hand matches that of Baltimore, The Walters Art Museum MS. W. 179. The rubrication and decoration of minor initials and line-fillers is close to that of Les Enlumineures Book of Hours 61, BL Stowe MS 26, Walters MSS 190 and 196 (made for Queen Eleanor of Portugal), and the Derval Hours, Sotheby’s, 5 July 2005, lot 98 (made for Jean de Châteaugiron, seigneur de Derval and chamberlain of Brittany). The accomplished decoration of the borders finds correspondence in Les Enlumineures Book of Hours 61 and possibly Chicago, Newberry Library, Case MS. 35 (the Mildmay Hours).

The sequence of miniatures for the Hours of the Virgin corresponds to the cycle of the Infancy of Christ as was customary in Southern Flanders at the time (see B. Bousmanne, “Item a Guillaume Wyelant aussi enlumineur,” Bruxelles, 1997, p. 164).  The manuscript was undoubtedly illuminated in the circle of Wilhelm Vrelant (d. 1481; active in Bruges from 1454), the most successful illuminator in Bruges at that time. His patrons included the Dukes of Burgundy and members of their family and court as well as French, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian royalty, diplomats, aristocrats, bankers and wealthy merchants. Judging from their surviving manuscripts, he and his collaborators produced devotional books in far greater numbers than any other text; it is therefore not surprising that at the time the so-called “Vrelant style” became very popular and had a strong impact on the production of Books of Hours.

The full-page miniatures are in the style of an anonymous illuminator singled out among Vrelant’s collaborators by Nicholas Rogers and given the name of the Mildmay Master after a Book of Hours in the Newberry Library in Chicago (Case MS. 35) that in the 16th century belonged to Sir Thomas Mildmay (b. in or before 1515, d. 1566), Auditor of the Court of Augmentations for Henry VIII. The master collaborated with Vrelant in the decoration of a four-volume copy of the Golden Legend in French translation for Jean d’Auxy, knight of the Golden Fleece (New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, MSS 672-675.

A direct comparison with the Book of Hours in the British Library (Harley MS 3000) suggests that the artist working on the present manuscript is not the Mildmay Master, even though he is seemingly the same artist of a Book of Hours attributed to him in S. Hindman and A. Bergeron-Foote, An intimate Art. 12 Books of Hours for 2012, London, 2012. He is also the same artist of another devotional manuscript (Walters MS. W. 177). The anonymous artist of these three manuscripts managed to avoid the sharp linearity and rarefied stillness that characterise the works of the Mildmay Master and used a different and warmer palette of deeper blues and reds. The iconography of his decorative cycles follows the models employed by Vrelant and his followers, but his miniatures display distinctive delicate features for the Virgin (see here the Annunciation, the Nativity and the Adoration of the Magi on fols 24v, 64v and 78v), elongated male faces (in particular of Christ on the Cross and David in prayer on fols 1v and 124v), landscapes of rolling green hills and mountains turning to dark blue in the distance, and interiors characterised by gilt-embroidered tapestries and pink and grey walls with white-stucco decoration that includes a very distinctive element. This element recalls the monograms in the trade-mark stamps imposed on the Bruges illuminators by the town administration to stop the import of illuminated single leaves by foreign artists who were not registered with the Guild. This decorative element is particularly similar to the stamp of Adriaen de Raedt, an apprentice of Vrelant in the years 1473-1475, who was occasionally named as Vrelant in the Guild’s documents.

Almost all miniatures in the present book are a simplified version of the standardized Flemish iconography for the cycle of the Infancy of Christ disseminated by Vrelant and his followers, and found, for instance, in two Books of Hours attributed to Wilhelm Vrelant and/or associates(Walters MSS W. 196 and 197), and in the Arenberg Hours attributed to the Mildmay Master (Los Angeles, J. Paul Getty Museum, MS. Ludwig IX 8 (83.ML.104)). The fall of the idol from the column in the miniature of the Flight to Egypt (fol. 103v), in particular, is reminiscent of the Mildmay Master’s representations of the Apostle Bartolomew and Felix of Ostia destroying Idols or Mamertinus of Auxerre praying to Idols in the New York Golden Legend (PML, MS. M 675, fols 22r, 51r and 56v respectively).

The representation of the Crucifixion is the only exception. In the figures of the fore-ground and the landscape in the background our artist paraphrases the Crucifixion in Vrelant’s style as found in Walters MS. W. 197 (fol. 34v) and the Arenberg Hours (fol. 134r), but for the central scene of the Crucifixion with Christ flanked by the two thieves he seems to look elsewhere, possibly at the Crucifixion attributed to the so-called Vienna Master of Mary of Burgundy in the Hours of Mary of Burgundy (Vienna, Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, MS. 1857, fol. 99v) and the Trivulzio Hours (The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, Ms. SMCi, fol. 94v), executed about 1470-1475, which echo the Crucifixion in Joos van Ghent’s Calvary triptych of the late 1460s. A similar dating for the present manuscript is consistent with the style of the all its other features.

The volume provides no clue towards the identification of its original owner.  Like many famous Bruges manuscripts such as the Spinola Hours (Los Angeles, The J. Paul Getty Museum, MS. Ludwig IX 18) and the Grimani Breviary (Venice, Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana, MS. Lat. I, 99) copied by scribes imitating Italian bookhands, or indeed by Italian scribes working in a Bruges, and decorated by Flemish artists, the present book was beautifully produced on smooth white parchment of the highest quality and copied in an elegant round Italianate Gothic hand. The litany is of Augustinian Use, with Paul the First Hermit and Nicholas of Tolentino (canonized in 1446) among the doctors and confessors and Monica among the Virgins; other saints added to an otherwise standard text for the Use of Rome are Alexis at the end of monks and hermits, and Saints Margaret, Barbara and Elisabeth among the Virgins.

The masculine forms used in most prayers, including “Obsecro te” and “Intemerata”, with the only exception of the last, suggest that the book belonged to a man; the inclusion of the prayer “Deus propicius esto mihi peccatori et custos mei sis omnibus diebus vite mee,” traditionally attributed to St. Augustine, may indicate that he was a man of some importance, possibly a member of the large Italian community of merchants and bankers in Bruges, or a major local patron.


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Book of Hours, use of Rome, in Latin and French, printed on vellum. Hore beate Marie virginis secundum usum Romanum totaliter ad longum sine require Cum multis suffragiis & orationib’ de nouo additis

Paris, Germain Hardouin, 1528.


PRINTED ON VELLUM. 8°. A-M8. 96 leaves, 30 lines. Roman letter. Large Hardouin device on title, 16 large metalcuts (2 full-page, 14 half-page), anatomical skeleton, and 22 smaller cuts, all illuminated in gold and colours by a contemporary hand, gold painted borders, ruled in red, to each large cut, metal cut multiple-piece ornamental, grotesque or historiated borders to all other pages, (unpainted), entirely rubricated with liquid-gold initials and line-filler on alternate red and blue grounds. (A1r, title with Hardouin device, A1v 4 quatrains beginning ‘ung iuif mutilant iadis’, A2r anatomical skeleton and 4 small cuts, A2v almanac for 1528-1545, A3r-B1r calendar, B1v-3v Gospel sequence (one large, 3 small cuts), B4r-C2r Passion according to St. John (large Crucifixion), C2v-F7r Hours of the Virgin (large cuts of Annunciation (x 2), Visitation, Nativity, Annunciation to the Shepherds, Adoration of the Magi, Presentation in the Temple, Flight into Egypt, Coronation of the Virgin), F7v-G2r Hours of the Cross and of the Holy Ghost (Crucifixion, Pentecost), G2v-5v Office of the Immaculate Conception (Virgin and Child in mandorla), G6r-H5v Seven Penitential Psalms (Bathsheba), H6r-K4r Office of the Dead (Job on his dungheap), K4v-L5v Suffrages, (Trinity and 12 small cuts), L5v-M1r seven prayers of St Gregory, prayers to the Virgin for Saturday, prayer to St. Roch (one small cut), M1r-4v prayers attributed to St. Augustine, prayers devoted to the Virgin, M4v-5v Hours of St. Barbara (one small cut), M5v-7r Salutatio beate Marie virginis, M7r-v table of contents, M8v colophon). Outer blank margin of title page trimmed, well away from text, the odd marginal thumb mark spot or stain, vellum slightly yellowed in places. A very good copy with crisp dark impressions of the cuts, the painting and gold fresh and clean, in contemporary Parisian calf over thin wooden boards, covers blind ruled to a dense panel design, outer two panels filled with blind scrolls, central ‘Gril de St Laurent’ design of vertical strips of repeated motifs in blind, spine covered at a later date with black painted vellum, binding rubbed corners worn, all edges gilt.

Extremely rare, finely printed and beautifully illuminated book of hours, on good quality vellum with the cuts finely illuminated in gold and colour to a rectangular format, although the metalcuts beneath are within ovals. This means the illuminator has not simply coloured the cuts beneath but has freely painted over them or extended the painting of the figures beyond the original borders.This copy seems to be very close to one sold in the Foyle library (lot 202) in 2000, although this copy remains in its contemporary binding. Books of hours were used by individuals at home rather than in church. A calendar was attached to the front so that memorial days of the saints could be identified. “And there is no doubt that the famous illustrations of the Missal, or ‘Book of Hours,’ issued in Paris between 1490 and 1520, were engraved on metal of some kind, perhaps on copper or some amalgam of tin and copper. (…) It will be noticed that the groundwork of many borders in the French books is filled with little white dots, criblé it was called; these dots are, in the first place, to imitate similar work in the gold grounds of the borders of illustrated missals, and, in the second place, to save the labour of cutting away so much of the metal as would be required for a white ground. (…) An important point to notice in connection with the illustrations of French ‘Books of Hours’ at this time is that they are nearly all inspired by German artists and nearly all copied from illuminated MSS.” Joseph Cundall. ‘A Brief History of Wood engraving.’

The Hardouin’s workshop dominated the market of printed books of hours, in Paris between 1510 and 1550. Gillet Hardouin worked primarily as a printer, between 1500 and 1542, and German Hardouin was registered in the Guild of Illuminators. They were the only editors capable of both printing and illumination without commissioning other professionals. The metal cut borders do not follow the text of the work and combine scenes from the life of Christ, the Saints and the Old Testament with alternating with allegorical decorations of many various kinds. The quality of their work is remarkable. It seems that they produced books of hours in various formats, from ordinary copies printed on paper to those printed on vellum with woodcuts and the most luxurious where the entire book was illuminated over the original woodcuts as here.

A very rare and beautiful work.

See Fairfax Murray 274 for a similar work. Not in Brunet, van Praet or Lacombe.


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Book of Hours, Use of Rome, in Latin, illuminated manuscript on vellum

probably Ferrara, Italy, 1460-1480.


81 x 61 mm, 382 leaves on parchment: I-IX10, X10 (with quires XI and XII inserted between leaves sixth and seventh), XI10, XII4, XIII-XXXI10, XXXII8, XXXIII-XXXVIII10, XXXIX4, XL6 (3 blanks), catchwords in lower margin of last verso of quires and trace of manuscript leaf-signatures on quires I-X and XIII-XXXVIII, repeating signature D on quire XXXIII; parchment flyleaf with conjoint pastedown at the beginning and end. Regular Italian Gothic script [Southern Textualis Rotunda] in red and black by two hands, the second copying the additional text in the Hours of the Virgin and the Italian prayers at the end. Rubrics in red and initials (1-2 line high) in alternating red and blue throughout. 14 initials (2-4 lines high), in blue or green set against a gold-leaf ground with foliate decoration and/or extensions in purple and green with gold bezants, marking the Hours within the Hours of the Virgin and of the Cross, and the beginning of Litany. 4 illuminated historiated initials, in blue, in foliate design with white tracery, set against gold-leaf grounds with foliate extensions in green and purple, and 4 full borders decorated with scrolling green leaves and flowers in blue, purple, green and yellow interspersed with gold bezants, on fols 21r, 165r, 269r and 313r: 1 six-line initial “D”[omine] (fol. 21r) historiated with the Virgin and Child, the original arms within the wreath at centre of the bas-de-page erased [gules, a central charge per pale with traces of one small object at either side and repainted as arms of same tincture with a column argent]; 1 six-line initial “V”[enite] (fol. 165r) historiated with the image of a skull set against a green field and blue sky; 1 six-line initial “D”[omine] (fol. 269r) historiated with David in prayer; 1 six-line initial “D”[omine] (fol. 313r) historiated with Christ as the Man of Sorrows.  Good quality parchment, well preserved, with large, clean margins. Thin wood boards sewn on three double-split spine bands of alum-tawed skin, two endbands with decorative sewing in alternating gold and red threads, and bookblock edges gilt and gauffered, all datable to the early sixteenth century. Red-velvet cover with fastening copper-alloy catch, inscribed “AVE”, red-velvet strap and fastening pin, with quatrefoil-shape base, at centre of lower cover (19th-century).

The volume includes the text necessary for the daily private devotion of religious and lay individuals according to the use of Rome.

Manuscript Books of Hours produced in the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance were often beautifully produced and illuminated to reflect the wealth and sophistication of their patrons. The present book is no exception. It was written in a pleasing elegant and regular Italian Rotunda hand on white and supple parchment of the highest quality and decorated with charming initials and borders in bright colours and gold. The simple and yet elegant appearance and the small proportions suggest it was made for a cultivated female patron.

The four patron saints of Siena, Ansano, Savino, Crescenzio e Vittore, listed in the calendar at the beginning of the book (fols 1r-18v) and even more prominently among the martyrs in the Litany (fol. 297r-v), point to the Tuscan town as the place of origin. The palette of deep hues of blue, purple, green and yellow, the dark outlining of the figures, and the shapes of foliage and flowers in the borders identify the unknown artist as a close follower of the Sienese illuminator Bernardino Cignoni (d. 1496). Cignoni decorated manuscripts and documents for the Siena Cathedral and Chancery, and a number of local religious confraternities and aristocratic families, such as the Piccolomini and the Bichi (see M. Cignoni, “Bernardino Cignoni di Siena miniatore di libri (m. 1496)”, in Honos alit artes: Studi per il settantesimo compleanno di Mario Aschieri, Firenze, 2014, vol. 2, pp. 269-73). The depiction of the skull in the historiated initial at the beginning of the Office of the Dead (fol. 165r) is particularly close to Cignoni’s opening of the same Office in the Hours for Filitiana Bichi (now New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, MS M 311, fol. 85 r). The patron of the present Hours also belonged to a prominent Sienese family, but her arms have been erased from the bas-de-page of fol. 21 recto. The original tincture was seemingly gules, with a charge in pale, now overpainted argent, and an unidentified object at either side of it.

Early in the early sixteenth century, the text for Terce and Sext in the Hours of the Virgin was replaced and a final quire containing three additional prayers in Italian added, the bookblock edges were slightly trimmed, gilt and gauffered, and the book possibly newly bound in a delicate velvet [?] binding. These changes probably occurred when the manuscript was passed on to a new owner, possibly a daughter or a niece, her name “Frasia” (for Eufrasia) recurring at the beginning of two of the Italian prayers (fols 377r with marginal maniculae and 379r), in which she is portrayed as a “misera peccatrice”. The book also shows a sample of her own writing in the words “o pecatrice frasia” added at the end of the last prayer by an unprofessional, yet educated early sixteenth-century hand (fol. 382v).

Frasia was a common name at the time among Sienese women and the literature relating to the cultural life in Siena in the first half of the century records the names of at least three Sienese noblewomen, Frasia Agazzari, Frasia Placidi de’ Ventury and Frasia Marzi, who wrote poetry and participated in the reunions – the so-called veglie – of the new Academia degli Intronati (founded in 1525; see Giovanni Paolo Ubaldini, Paradossa Quinta of his Dieci paradosse degli Academici Intronati da Siena, Milan, Gio. Antonio degli Antonii, 1564)

Despite a seemingly matching tincture (gules), none of the family arms of these gentlewomen can be identified with the original owner; a possible match is to be found in the arms of the di Niccoluccio family (gules, a ladder of four rounds per pale or between two estoiles of the same), with the gold ladder now substituted with a white column.


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RAMELLI, Agostino


Le diuerse et artificiose machine…

Paris, in casa dell’autore, 1588


FIRST EDITION. Folio. ff. [xvi], 338. *1, **7, a-s8, t6, u-z8, A-D8, E-K4-2, L6, M-Q4-2, R-X8, Y4, Z2, Aa2, Bb8, Cc-Ff4-2, Gg-Kk6-2. French text in Roman, Italian in italic. Engraved title within architectural border, full page engraved portrait of the author on verso within architectural frame, both by Léonard Gaultier, 194 engravings, of which are 174 full-page and 20 double-page, numbered to 195, numbers 148–9 combined as one illustration, three signed with the monogram “JG”, text and engravings printed within borders of floral typographic ornaments, historiated and floriated woodcut initials in various sizes, woodcut tailpieces and corner ornaments. Discreet library stamp of “Schmidt József pesti molnár” on title, repeated on a few blank margins of plates. Age yellowing with marginal browning, minor spotting in places, autograph pasted over in lower blank margin of title with small repairs to outer margin on recto and verso, tear restored in blank margin of ff16, the occasional marginal thumb mark or ink spot, small oil stain in blank lower corner on last few leaves. A good copy, with excellent dark impressions of the engravings, in contemporary vellum over thick boards, old reback with original spine remounted, a little soiled, corners bumped.

First edition of the most important and most impressive ‘book of machines’ of the C16th, an outstanding example of French book production; illustrated with 195 full-page engravings, it is one of the earliest and most elaborate pictorial technical works to be printed. “This volume is dedicated to the King and special care was taken to make it appropriate as an expression of gratitude for Royal favor and protection. There is also a second factor governing the circumstances of publication. In his address to the reader, Ramelli complains of piracy of his designs which resulted in their publication in corrupt and mutilated forms destroying the original accuracy of his inventions. As a result of this experience, Ramelli planned this work as a particularly handsome volume, difficult to counterfeit, strictly supervised by the author himself and published with the imprint, ‘in casa del’ autore'” – Mortimer. The Ramelli machines are concerned especially with hydraulics or mechanisms of warfare. The superb illustrations show the machines in use with their parts indicated by letters explained in the accompanying text. They are extremely finely worked and detailed, with great care taken to present the machine in landscape settings with figures employed in demonstrating them. Ramelli’s designs cover water-raising devices, wells, mills, mobile bridges, machines for breaking through doors and metal bars, cranes, excavating equipment, fountains, and projectile devices. He described and illustrated for the first time the rotary pump, mechanical details of windmills, and a coffer-dam of interlocking piles, and like other writers of the period he designed biological automata in the form of hydraulically operated singing birds. including one notable departure into the world of domestic gadgetry, a revolving bookcase designed to enable a reader to peruse multiple volumes without having to leave his seat. Ramelli was greatly influenced by the increasing importance placed on mathematics and geometry as an important tool for engineers and artists, and particularly by the writings of Guidobaldo del Monte (1545-1607) and Petrus Ramus (1515-1572). Ramelli’s interest in mathematics is demonstrated in the preface, ‘On the excellence of mathematics in which is shown how necessary mathematics are for learning all the liberal arts.’ “Ramelli also wanted to make his book accessible to many engineers so, as an Italian living in France, he produced both Italian and French descriptions of the machines. Ramelli’s bilingual descriptions are much more detailed than those found in previous illustrated books of machines by Jacques Besson and Jean Errard de Bar-le-Duc. Ramelli’s book had a great influence on future mechanical engineering; Georg Andreas Böckler’s, Theatrum machinarum novum, 1662, copied eighteen of Ramelli’s plates. “Ramelli’s influence can also be seen in the well-known works of Grollier de Servière (Recueil d’ouvrages curieux de mathematique et de mecanique, 1719) and Jacob Leupold (the multi-volume set Theatrum machinarum, 1724-1739). Leupold’s work helped pass along Ramelli’s ideas to a large population of eighteenth-century engineers. Only the one edition of the book was issued during Ramelli’s lifetime. In 1620, a German translation appeared in Leipzig as Schatzkammer, mechanischer Künste…, published by Henning Grossen den Jüngern with the illustrations re-engraved by Andreas Bretschneider.” Ronald Brashear, Smithsonian libraries.

BM STC C16th Fr. Dibner, Heralds of Science, 173. Adams R-52. Brunet IV:1095. Mortimer Harvard Fr. 452. Norman 1777. Riccardi I:341. “Opere rarissima ed assai apprezzata”


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Venice, 1599


8 intaglio landscape engravings on thick laid paper, brief verses of Alciati in italics beneath. Slightly dusty in borders, a couple of small wormholes affecting blank margin only. A very good, uncropped copy in quarter calf over green cloth boards.

The remains of an ancient temple, incongruously containing a sphinx, appear before a river, city, and mountainous landscape, in the foreground youths wrestle next to a Classical facade, a fine dolphin fountain gurgles behind.
Bartsch 7001.524

Pausing briefly from their labours, some huntsmen laze in the dappled shadows beside a river.

A man prays on his knees against a striking vista of rolling hills, convoys and a city.

AIn the centre of a pastoral idyll, a balding and bearded man presses his suit upon a young lady in a bonnet. Above, Cupid flies, arrow primed for the kill, in the shadow of nearby trees a skeletal Death is similarly primed…

A sky-filled scene sees Death stowing away his arrows, Cupid’s youthful form struck down and controted on the ground behind him, quiver cast asunder.

While workers toil in the fields and a caravan pushes its way slowly through a river, a young man seizes a small bow, and takes aim at the dim silhouette of a bird flying overhead.

A herd of swine galumph, distracting a passing mule in a nosebag, who is driven on his way by a man brandishing a whip. A tranquil city soars behind.

A fine city, before which the altar of Isis is transported on the back of a donkey, which lows as it is beaten. Peasants doff their hats and genuflect.

Bartsch 7001.519-527


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Boni et Mali Scientia: The Science of Good and Evil

Antwerp, 1583


12 intaglio engravings on thick laid paper, based on images from Genesis, after drawings by Maarten de Vos. Slightly dusty in borders, a couple of small wormholes affecting blank margin only. Engravings measure 185x260mm, sheets 245×335. Explanation below each scene in a clear italic. A very good copy in modern quarter calf over cloth boards.

Central title, the surround featuring Adam and Eve dozing on either side and the serpent and apple beneath, implements of agriculture – for threshing, sowing etc; musical instruments and weapons of war. Bartsch 7001.017 S2. Wurzbach 8.1. Le Blanc 39.

Highly detailed scene, featuring lions, a fox and a porcupine in the foreground round the feet of Adam and Eve and God, whose outline is hazy and who walks on a cloud. In the middle-ground appear numerous trees and God sending the couple to sleep on the banks of a river. In the background, mountains rise into the distance, and a bucking horse and camel appear on the shores of a great sea.
This engraving served as the model for Jacob Bouttat’s ‘Paradise’, a painting in the Museo de Navarro, Pampalona. Bartsch 7001.018 S2

Set in the garden of Eden, in the background we see Eve picking fruit from the tree of life and handing it to Adam, while in the tree above them coils the Serpent, half snake and half man, his arm outstretched towards Eve, against a backdrop of trees. In the foreground we see God expelling the couple, now clothed in branches, from Paradise. Around His feet lie a bird, a lioness, a deer and a magnificent spiky hedgehog.
This engraving served as the model for Jacob Bouttat’s ‘El Peccado’. Bartsch 7001.019 S2

Expelled from Paradise, in the background we see Adam and Eve pursued by a sword-wielding angel, in front of which appear an elephant, a camel, an ostrich, a unicorn. A leafy bank rises on the left on which graze goats and rabbits, while in the foreground we see a well-muscled Adam working in his fields while eve looks on, babe in arms and toddler and chickens at her feet.
This engraving served as the model for Jacob Bouttat’s ‘Adam trabajando el campo’. Bartsch 7001.020 S2

Against a backdrop of rolling hills, once more punctuated by a camel, we see Abel tending a herd of cattle and sheep, a pair of rams locking horns at his feet, while Cain drives a belligerent ox. To the right a cottage shows a family scene.
This engraving served as the model for Jacob Bouttat’s ‘Cain Agricultor y Abel Pastor’. Bartsch 7001.021 S2

Against the now common pastoral-familial background, the scene shows Cain and Abel making sacrifices of fruit & vegetables and a lamb, while God stands in the smoke. In the middle distance we see the murder of Abel.
This engraving served as the model for Jacob Bouttat’s ‘Sacrificios de Cain y Abel’. Bartsch 7001.022 S2

Before a thatched cottage in which his wife stirs a pot and cradles her child, Cain is building, numerous sheep and donkeys at his feet. A vengeful God appears on the left, a mountain path rises in the rear. This engraving served as the model for Jacob Bouttat’s ‘Cain con su mujer y su hijo Enoch’. Bartsch 7001.023 S2

A scene of intense industry showing men breaking rocks, mixing mortar, collecting water and building walls in the foreground, a town with thatched houses and a castle behind, interspersed with beasts of burden and labourers. Bartsch 7001.024 S2

Depicting the house of Lamech with his two wives, Ada (light) with her shepherd and musician children, and Sella (darkness) with her daughter Pleasure and blacksmith son, here shown wielding rocks. In the background rural scene Lamech is shown with his corpse at his feet, the town behind. Bartsch 7001.025 S2

Busy scene, featuring nomads herding geese, cattle, sheep and camels, with further animals grazing freely, in the foreground a tent in which Jabal and his family eat, while a dog in a collar looks on. Bartsch 7001.026 S2

An workshop in the foreground, shows wood being sawed and planed while one man strings a violin-like instrument, and another drills holes in a pipe, finished instruments are tested behind them, to a backdrop of a town square filled with dancers and more musicians. Bartsch 7001.027 S2

A woman spins thread in the foreground, behind her Tubal-Cain toils in his forge. In the background men work in a mill and hew ricks, which are then floated down stream on wooden rafts. Bartsch 7001.028 S2

Johan (aka Jan) Sadeler (1550-1600), was a Flemish-born draughtsman, engraver and publisher. Initially a steel-chiseler he later moved to Antwerp where he gained admission to the Guild of St. Luke in 1572 as a copper plate engraver. In Antwerp Sadeler came into contact with Maarten de Vos (1532–1603), a leading Antwerp mannerist painter and draughtsman, with whom both he and his brothers collaborated for many years.


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Histoire de l’Entrée de la Reyne Mere du Roy tres-chrestien, dans les Provinces Unies des Pays-Bas. (with ) Histoire de l’Entrée de la Reyne Mère du Roy tres-chrestien dans la Grande-Bretagne.

London, J. Raworth for G. Thomason and O. Pullen, 1639


FIRST EDITIONS. two vols. in one. Folio. 70 unnumbered ll. (including plates, last blank) + 43 unnumbered ll. (including plates). Roman letter, large floriated initials and headpieces, typographical tailpieces, superb engraved additional title of an angel holding a medallion portrait of Marie de Medici above allegorical figures of death and time, and 14 engraved plates (including one large double folding page), four by W. Hollar. Vol 2 engraved additional title of four allegorical figures surrounding the arms of Marie de Medici, and 13 engraved plates (including one large double folding page), engraved title and three portraits by W. Hollar. André Eugène de Walsh’s autograph C1700 at head of first title, armorial library stamp of the Château de Serrant on both titles, large baroque bookplate of M. di Tramoglia (Henry, Duc de la Tremouille) signed ‘B.P.V.’ on front pastedown, sale notice, Sothebys 1955, penciled above, small label of Paul and Mariane Gourary beneath. First title slightly dusty, light marginal age yellowing, a few pale dampstains at gutter of first few ll of both vols. Fine, large copies, on thick paper, crisp and clean, with excellent strong impressions of the plates, in contemporary polished vellum over boards.

Rare first edition of La Serre’s description of the famous visit of Marie de Medici to the Dutch Republic in 1638, beautifully illustrated with portraits by W. Hollar and with exceptionally fine etched views of the entrée of the French Queen Mother into various Dutch cities, bound with the extremely rare continuation of her voyage to England, also superbly illustrated with portraits and views. Landwehr and Fairfax Murray ascribe all the engravings to Hollar, but Pennington, Parthey and Hind only the frontispieces, the view of the States General and portraits. Hollar lived at the time at London with the Earl of Arundel, enjoyed the patronage of Charles I and was one of the foremost engravers and illustrators of his day.

Marie de Medici, mother of Louis XIII, exiled in 1630, escaped to Brussels in 1631 (after the failure of her attempted coup against her son), where she lived for seven years, supported by a Spanish pension. She continued intriguing against Richelieu and was forced to flee to Holland, greatly to the indignation of Philip of Spain, who at once stopped her allowance. Her visit to Amsterdam was considered a diplomatic triumph by the Dutch, as it lent official recognition to the newly formed Republic; accordingly she was given an elaborate ceremonial royal entry. Spectacular displays, by Claes Cornelisz Moeyaert, and water pageants took place in the city’s harbour. There was a procession led by mounted trumpeters; a large temporary structure erected on an artificial island in the Amstel River was built especially for the festival. The structure was designed to display a series of dramatic tableaux in tribute to her once she set foot on the floating island. She was accompanied by the present author, Puget de La Serre, from Toulouse, librarian of Gaston d’Orléans and prolific author of novels and histories. His description of Marie’s voyage is magnificently illustrated with splendid views of the towns visited and the pageants and ceremonies, including a magnificent double page view of her procession approaching Hertogenbosch where she was met by Prince of Orange. There are further fine etchings showing her disembarking at Gorcum, Dordrecht and at Rotterdam. The whole procession is shown again nearing The Hague, and at Amsterdam a boat-show on the canals is depicted. At Leiden the ‘Entrée’ is shown on a quay alongside a canal, and the last plate, shows the Queen Mother’s dramatic stormy channel-crossing to England.

Following her travels through the Netherlands, she sought refuge in England which was granted by Charles I. Marie had a grand reception and St. James’s Palace was given her as a residence, where she kept a court of her own. However she was mobbed and insulted by the people, even in the palace and forced to leave in 1641. The work is illustrated with superb views of her arrival in Harwich, her entrée in Colchester, the country houses she stayed at through East Anglia, and her entrance to London. The magnificent double page engraving representing Marie’s public entrance into London is particularly interesting; it is one of only two street views extant of the City previous to the great fire. The scene shows the royal cortege in the middle of Cheapside, by the Cheapside Cross, one of the crosses erected by Edward I, to mark the nine resting places of the body of his beloved queen, Eleanor of Castile, on its way from Lincoln to Westminster Abbey. It was destroyed by order of parliament in May 1643. It also depicts the Cheapside Standard, rebuilt in the reign of Henry VI. Stow describes it exactly as represented in this engraving. There are numerous trade signs seen in the illustration; every house had a sign, as shop windows were too small to afford any idea of the trade carried on within. This is followed with scenes of her arrival at St. James Palace, the receptions there, and a view of the Thames, the Tower of London and the firework display that celebrated her arrival. The fine engraved frontispiece and three portraits are among Hollar’s finest productions. A superb copy, extremely rare with both parts, of a most interesting and important work.

Henry de la Tremouille 1599-1674, was a celebrated French general, cousin of Condé and grandson of the prince of Orange, William the Silent, also the grandfather to William III of England. De la Tremouille’s last active service was in Italy – where he received the wound that enforced his retirement. A. Walsh, was from a Jacobite ship owning family, resident in St. Malo after 1685, which provided and manned the vessel which took Prince Charles Edward to Scotland in 1745. The family bought the Chateau de Serrant in 1749 and became Comtes de Serrant in 1755. The château passed back to the Tremouille family in 1830 when Valentine Walsh de Serrant married Charles, Duc de La Tremouille.

STC 20488 + 20489. Landwehr, Splendid Ceremonies 106. Pennington, Descriptive catalogue of the etched work of Hollar (1982), nos. 463, 1687, 2675; Parthey, Wenzel Hollar (1853), nos. 463, 1687, 2675; Hind, Wenzel Hollar (1922), pp. 3, 11.


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The Surveyor in foure bookes.

London, W. Stansby for W. Burre, 1616


Folio, pp. [xii] 228. Roman letter. Fine, large engraved frontispiece portrait of Rathborne by Simon de Passe, engraved title with allegorical figures of Arithmetica and Geometria surmounted by celestial and terrestrial globes and ‘Artifex’ trampling fools and dunces underfoot, and two vignettes of surveyors in the field with their various instruments by W[illiam] H[ole], further engraved portrait of the dedicatee, a young Charles I as Prince of Wales, by F. Delaram. Elaborate woodcut headpieces to opening of each book, geometric woodcut illustrations to text throughout, including a three-quarter page illustration of a quadrant, woodcut initials. O3 is a cancel, fifth line of verso has “58 4/5”. Light dampstaining to lower margin, slight discolouration to upper edge of a few leaves in initial gathering, occasional light thumbmark, paperflaw to outer edge of R3, generally very good. Contemporary vellum over pasteboard, the spine titled in brown ink in a 17th-century hand. A little spotting to outer edge of upper board. Edward Thorne, contemporary ownership inscription to title (deleted), library of the Earls of Macclesfield, their nineteenth-century armorial bookplate to front pastedown, and armorial blindstamp to title and A3.

FIRST EDITION. A very good copy of “the first comprehensive English textbook on Survey” (Singer, vol. III, p. 541). Rathborne addressed the difficulty for contemporary surveyors of computing the areas of fields and estates. He was an advocate of the new decimal arithmetic introduced by Simon Stevin in 1585, and made use of trigonometry, as well as being a staunch supporter of the then relatively new pocket-tables of logarithms. This is one of the most important works of the new kind of vernacular literature on surveying which began to appear at around this time. These offered practical advice for surveyors ‘in the field’, using relatively straightforward equipment, as opposed to concentrating on fanciful advances in scientific instruments. Rathborne presents the basic principles of geometry, and expounds upon their application, as well as discussing instruments useful to the art of surveying (some of them of his own invention, viz. the ‘peractor’ and the decimal chain, an improved version of which is still in use today), and finally discourses on the legal aspects of survey, thus setting out a comprehensive introduction to the practical process of surveying.

The frontispiece portrait of the author here shows him in 1616 (aged 44), in a high ruff, at a desk holding a compass, with other, simple mathematical instruments in the lower spandrels (Hind II, p. 267). The portrait of the dedicatee, the future Charles I as Prince of Wales, by Francis Delaram, shows the future King wearing an elaborate lace collar, and the order of the garter, with his royal arms beneath.

The stunning title-page engraving by William Hole, an English artist active around this time, and mainly known for his portraits and frontispieces, shows “surveyors at work with theodolite and plane-table, their instruments mounted on tripods…readings are entered in an orderly manner in a field-book and plotting is done with a protractor and a mounted needle for pricking points. A bearing-dial or circle termed a ‘circumferentor’ is also in use, and the particular pattern described includes a table of horizontal equivalents on the alidade”. (ibid., p. 542).

STC 20748; Hind II, p. 267; Johnson 27:15; cf. Taylor, Tudor, pp. 154-5.


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Habiti antichi et moderni di tutto il mondo

Venice, Giovanni Bernardo Sessa, 1598.


8to, ff. [lvi],507. Italic and roman letter, woodcut engraved t-p, floriated and historiated initials, woodcut plates on numbered leaves’ verso, Italian ms. ex-libris on t-p “ Fran. Ant. J. Moccia” with a date “1709”, p.159 C17 ms. monogram. Very clean and good copy in C17 vellum recased.

Second and most complete edition with 507 woodcuts plates, among them 87 new one. This addition includes a section on American countries with 19 plates on Peru, Cusco, Mexico, Virginia and Florida. This edition comports a Latin translation along with the Italian original 1590 text.

This work is considered the apex of Cinquecento costume book achievement. This copiously illustrated costume compendium works from antiquity to modernity and the last discoveries. It presents, in the first part on Europe, the fashions of the different cities of Italy and focus on Venice. Starting with a bare-midriffed and brawny Trojan, the work soon moves on to bejewelled elegant Venetian ladies in rich brocades, richly-gilded merchant’s wives and surprisingly modestly dressed courtesans, a bearded doge, hooded monks, convicts in chains and tradesmen playing their wares. Intricately detailed, including even buttons, shoelaces and earrings, the drawings are appealingly presented in a selection of decorative frames. Many of the subjects appear to be based on manuscript or printed sources, for example those of Nicolas de Nicolay and Pieter de Coeck on Turkish costumes.

The second part of the text covers Asia and Africa, with a further 59 woodcuts. Consciously exotic in the choice of costume with figures wielding scimitars, bows and spears, including a fully-veiled woman, it travels through i.a. Turkey, Armenia, Georgia, Persia, Damascus, Syria, the West Indies, Ethiopia, China, Egypt, and the Canary Isles, concluding with a couple of fearsome Americans natives, resplendent in skimpy loincloths.

Cesare Vecellio (1521-1601), painter and engraver, was related to Tiziano Veceli, named Titian, and was probably his assistant. He accompanied Titian to Augsburg in 1598. The Brera’s Museum at Milan has one of his paintings, a Trinity and he is known for his fore-edge painting in the Pilone’s collection. Several important books were illustrated by Cesare Vecellio, one of them, our book, has 420 plates engraved after the drawing of our artist by Christopher Chrieger or Krüger, named also Cristoforo Guerra (German artist from Nuremberg who worked at Venice during the second part of the sixteen century).

A fascinating insight into the fashion of the 16th century.

BM STC It; EDIT 16; Brunet, V, 1104; Sabin, XXVI, 296” Book XII. De gli habiti dell’ A1mericana, leaves 488-507. The first edition does not include this section. The woodcuts are from a drawing by Titian, according to a statement in the third edition, 1664. c. This ascription is considered doubtful by Brunet” ; Lipperheide 22 ; Maggs Bros., Bibiotheca Americana, Part V, 1598 “Libro XII contains full-page woodcuts of the costumes of the inhabitants of Peru, Cusco, Mexico, Virginia and Florida, both men and women”;European Americana, 598/112; Vinet, Bibliographie méthodique et raisonnée des Beaux Arts, p. 266 .


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