Literature Philobiblon

One Thousand Years of Bibliophily from the 11th to the 21st Century

The Dolce Stil Novo manifesto

78. Alighieri, Dante (1265-1321)

Sonetti e’ Canzoni di diuersi antichi Autori Toscani in dieci libri raccolte. Di Dante Alaghieri Libri quattro. Di M. Cino da Pistoia Libro uno. Di Guido Cavalcanti Libro uno. Di Dante da Maiano Libro uno. Di Fra Guittone d’Arezzo Libro uno. Di diuerse Canzoni e’ Sonetti senza nome d’autore Libro uno. Filippo Giunta's heirs, 6 July 1527.

8° (160x100 mm). Collation: AA4, a-s8, t4. [4], 148 leaves. Italic and roman type. Woodcut printer's device on the title-page and on the verso of the last leaf. Nineteenth-century half-vellum, marbled covers. Spine with title in gilt on red morocco lettering-piece. Red silk bookmark. A very good copy, a few small stains to fols. AA4 and a1. Light foxing in places.

The rare first edition of the remarkable collection known as the 'Giuntina di rime antiche', the first anthology in print which contains Dante's canzoniere along with lyrics composed by poets of the Dolce Stil Novo tradition. Edited by Bardo di Antonio Segni, member of a distinguished Florentine family, this anthology is an authentic monument to Italian vernacular poetry. In his prefatory letter, the printer Bernardo Giunta addressed the publication to the Amatori de le toscane rime, i.e., admirers of Tuscan poetry, inviting them to read and study the early vernacular lyric tradition, and Dante's poems above all. The Giuntina di rime antiche is divided into eleven books (not ten, as erroneously stated in the title), and includes the texts of about three hundred poems, most of which had never previously appeared in print. The entries are grouped by metrical form and are almost entirely by Tuscan authors, although works from the Sicilian and Bolognese Schools are also included, with the former being represented by Giacomo da Lentini, Guido delle Colonne, and Pier delle Vigne, to name a few, and the latter by Guido Guinizelli and Onesto degli Onesti, among others.

The first four books of this edition are entirely devoted to Dante, and contain – for the first time – his complete poems apart from the Commedia, including the text of Vita Nuova, which was only published in its complete form in 1576. The Giuntina poetical collection is very important from a textual point of view, and played a significant part in the reconstruction of the complex history of Dante's lyrical works. In addition to the fifteen so-called canzoni distese, the texts of which are mainly derived from Giovanni Boccaccio's transcriptions, the editor Bardo di Antonio Segni also attributes to Dante a selection of poems which have come down to us but are not included in the manuscripts. This edition represents the highest achievement in print of the long tradition of Florentine lyric anthologies.

Adams T-1213; STC Italian 687; Camerini Annali 206; Pettas 219; Mambelli 995; Gamba 206; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 78.

The last Soncino book printed in Italy

79. Folengo, Teofilo (1491-1544)

Orlandino qual tratta darme e damor per Limerno Pitocco da Mantua composto. Girolamo Soncino, 1527.

8° (155x111 mm). Collation: A-P4, Q6. LXVI leaves. Roman and gothic type. Title-page printed in red and black within an elaborated woodcut frame. Half page woodcut vignette on fol. A2r, showing Berta and Milone. Nineteenth-century vellum, over pasteboards. Red edges. A good copy. Title-page soiled, some foxing and browning, small stains on a few leaves; a short tear to fol. E3, without any loss. Wormhole in the outer margin of the first thirty leaves not affecting text, pin wormhole in the first twenty leaves that slightly affects the title-page border, the frame of the woodcut on the following page and a few letters. Two manuscript notes in Hebrew on the verso of the last leaf.

Provenance: on the recto of the last leaf, the early ownership entry by 'Eliezer bar Silomo Debauzo'; La Anticuaria Libreria de Llordachs Hermanos, Barcelona (ticket on the front pastedown).

The fine third edition of the Orlandino – written by Folengo under the nickname of Limerno Pitocco – and the last book printed by Gershom Soncino in Italy before moving, in 1527, to Salonika, in the Ottoman Empire. The first edition of Folengo's poem had appeared in Venice in July 1526, printed by Gregorio de' Gregori for the bookseller Niccolò Garanta, followed a few months later by another edition, also issued for Garanta, by the Nicolini da Sabbio brothers. The Orlandino is a poem in octaves, which narrates the early years of Orlando, fitting into the semi-popular tradition of the cantari dedicated to the childhood of the hero. The poem is divided into two sections: the background (Berta and Milone, Orlando's parents, falling in love) occupies six books, while the hero's deeds are narrated in the seventh and final canto.

Gershom Soncino was the greatest of the pioneers of Hebrew printing, active in different Italian towns – Brescia, Fano, Pesaro, and Rimini – from the late fifteenth century until 1527, when he was forced to flee for the Ottoman Empire. He published books in Hebrew, Latin, and Italian, with a special interest in chivalric literature, as the fine Orlandino of 1527 attests. The volume is illustrated with the same woodcut depicting Berta and Milone used, with a few variants, in 1526 in the Venetian editions of the poem. The Soncino Orlandino omits, as a measure of prudence, a few stanzas of the seventh canto and the entire eighth canto, which contains an anti-clerical tale on the fake abbot Griffarosto.

In his Annali tipografici dei Soncino (1886), Giacomo Manzoni states he was never able to see a copy of this book. An additional noteworthy feature in the copy presented here is its earliest recorded ownership, to be referred to a certain Eliezer ben Salomon Debauzo, reflecting the taste of the Sephardic diaspora in Italy for chivalric literature.

Manzoni, Annali Soncino, no. 134; E. Sandal, “Indice cronologico delle edizioni latine e volgari di Girolamo Soncino (1502-1527)”, G. Tamani (ed.), L'attività editoriale di Gershom Soncino, 1502-1527, no. 110; Melzi-Tosi p. 192; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 79.

From Βenedetto Varchi’s and Gian Giacomo Trivulzio’s libraries

81. Alighieri, Dante (1265-1321)

Dante. De la Vωlgare Elωquenzia... Vicenza, Tolomeo Gianicolo, January 1529. (bound with:) Gian Giorgio Trissino (1478-1550). Dialωgω... intitulato il Castellanω, nel quale si tratta de la lingua italiana. [Vicenza, Tolomeo Gianicolo, 1529]. (bound with:) Ιdem. Epistola... de le lettere nuωvamente aggiunte ne la lingua italiana... Vicenza, Tolomeo Gianicolo, February 1529. (uniformly bound with:) Ιdem. La Pωetica di M. Giωvan Giorgiω Trissinω. Tolomeo Gianicolo, April 1529.

Four works uniformly bound in two volumes, large 4° and small folio (278x166 mm). First volume: three works. I. Collation: a-b8, c6, d4. [26] leaves. Italic, Greek, and roman type. II. A-B8, C4. [20] leaves. Italic, Greek, and roman type. III. Collation: A4, aa-bb4, cc6. [17], [1] leaves. Italic, Greek, and roman type. Woodcut printer's device on each title page. Blank spaces for capitals, with printed guide letters. Second volume: collation: a-r4, s2. LXVIII, [2] leaves. Italic, Greek, and roman type. Woodcut printer's device on the verso of fol r4. Blank spaces for capitals, with printed guide letters.

Uniformly bound in eighteenth-century half-leather over pasteboards. Marbled covers. Smooth spines divided into compartments by narrow gilt frieze, title in gold on lettering-piece, imprint lettered to the foot. Pink rose silk bookmarks. Pale blue edges. At the lower extremities of the spines, small nineteenth-century paper labels, bearing the shelfmarks 'E.VIII.15' and 'E.VIII.16' respectively. Upper joint of the first volume slightly cracked; spines and corners of both volumes slightly worn. A good copy, in the first volume the opening title-page and fol. a8 uniformly browned; minor loss to the lower blank margin of the first title-page, without any loss. Both volumes foxed in places; a few spots, fingermarks, and early ink stains.

Provenance: on the first title-page of the first volume ownership inscription of Benedetto Varchi (1503-1565; 'Di Bened. Varchi'); another erased, and quite illegible ownership inscription in the same title-page; both volumes from the library of Gian Giacomo Trivulzio (1774-1831; his initials G.G.T. inked on the front pastedowns; the notices '1802. 23 7.bre. Broc' and 'fr. 45' on the front pastedown of the first volume).

A fine set, uniformly bound, from the celebrated library once owned by Count Gian Giacomo Trivulzio, which was particularly well endowed with testi di lingua. An additional noteworthy feature is its earliest recorded ownership in the first volume, to be referred to the outstanding Florentine humanist Benedetto Varchi.

The first volume opens with the first edition of Trissino's Italian translation of the De vulgari eloquentia, the unfinished treatise written in Latin by an exiled Dante between 1304 and 1307. The subject of the work is the nature of poetry in vernacular languages, above all Italian; against their detractors, the work attempts to defend the eloquence of vernacular languages, which, in Dante's opinion, have the potential of being just as dignified as Latin. Trissino edited the De la Volgare Eloquenzia on the basis of a manuscript in his possession, today in the Biblioteca Trivulziana in Milan (ms 1088) – the original Latin text only appeared in 1577.

In addition to the Italian translation of the De vulgari eloquentia the miscellaneous first volume also includes – as is frequently found to be the case – two treatises composed by Trissino himself: the first edition of the Dialogo intitulato il Castellano and the reprint of the Epistola de le lettere nuovamente aggiunte ne la lingua italiana, first published in 1524.

The second volume presents the first edition of Trissino's Poetica, devoted to Aristotle's theory of poetry, and likewise printed – as with the editions bound in the first volume – by the enigmatic Vicenza printer Tolomeo Gianicolo, and set in the handsome italic type, with the addition of the Greek vocals ε and ω, designed for him by Ludovico degli Arrighi.

For other books from Varchi's library see nos. 23 and 104 in the present catalogue.

I. Adams D-121; STC Italian 208; Mambelli p. 277; Gamba 1709. II. Adams T-950; STC Italian 681; Mortimer Italian, 507; Gamba 1704. III. Adams T-951; STC Italian 681; Gamba 1704; IV. Adams T-955; Balsamo-Tinto, Origini del corsivo nella tipografia italiana del Cinquecento, Milano 1977, pp. 130-131, pls. 50-51; G. Castellani, “Da Tolomeo Ianiculo a Bartolomeo Zanetti via Giovangiorgio Trissino”, La Bibliofilia, 94 (1992), pp. 171-185; M. Prunai Falciani, “Manoscritti e libri appartenuti al Varchi nella Biblioteca Riccardiana di Firenze”, Accademie e biblioteche d'Italia, 53 (1985), pp. 14-29; A. Sorella, “La Biblioteca Varchi”, B. Varchi, L'Ercolano, Pescara 1995, pp. 155-166; R. Norbedo, “Alcuni libri posseduti da Benedetto Varchi,” Lettere italiane, 56 (2004), pp. 462-467; P. Scapecchi, “Ricerche sulla biblioteca di Varchi con una lista di volumi da lui posseduti”, V. Bramanti (ed.), Benedetto Varchi 1503-1565, Roma 2007, pp. 309 -318; Autografi di letterati italiani. Il Cinquecento, Roma 2009, pp. 337-351; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 81.

In original speaking-binding

83. [Scriptores de re rustica]

Libri de re rustica, M. Catonis, M. Terentii Varronis, L. Iunii Moderati Columellę, Palladii Rutilii: quorum summam pagina sequens indicabit. Josse Bade, 30 April 1529.

Folio (333x214 mm). Collation: Aa6, A8, B6, a-t8, v6, x8. [40], 311, [21] pages. Roman type. Title-page within an elaborate woodcut architectural border, including putti, grotesque figures, antique vases and cuirasses, and mythological figures; on the upper panel a medallion depicting a laureate writer at his desk, large Bade device of a printer's press at the centre. Woodcut decorated initials, on ten lines the ones on criblé ground at the beginning of each book. Numerous woodcut illustrations and diagrams in the text. Handsome contemporary brown morocco, over pasteboards. Covers within blind fillets and two frames richly blind tooled in floral pattern. Traces of ties to the edges. At centre of both covers cornerpieces and fleurons surrounding a quatrefoil-shaped medallion, with the gilt inscriptions 'DE RE RVSTICA' on the upper cover, and 'M: CAT: M: VAR L: COL' on the lower one. Spine with three raised bands, compartments blind tooled with diagonal fillet pattern. Edges with trace of the original green colouring. Minor scrapes to the upper cover, upper joint slightly cracked, minor wear to corners and extremities of the spine, the front flyleaf lacking. A good, wide-margined and unsophisticated copy. Small wormholes to the lower portion of the front gutter; title-page lightly soiled with old repair to the outer lower blank corner, without any loss. A few leaves uniformly browned, some small stains and spots.

First Badius edition of this classical collection of texts on agriculture by the major Roman writers on the topic: De re rustica by Lucius Columella (4-70 AD), the De re rustica by Marcus Porcius Cato the Elder (234-149 BC), the De re rustica by Marcus Terentius Varro (116-27 BC), and the De re rustica and De insitione by Rutilius Palladius (4th-5th century AD). The Scriptores rei rustica had been re-discovered at the beginning of the fifteenth century by Poggio Bracciolini, and the collection was first printed by Nicolas Jenson in Venice in 1472. Numerous editions followed in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, and the collection became the standard reference work on agriculture until the end of the sixteenth century, owing especially to its comprehensive address of all aspects necessary for the conduct of a farm: plants, animals, wine, mustard, cheese, olives, fruit, etc.

The Badius edition closely followed the Libri de re rustica published by Aldus Manutius in May 1514, and edited by the Venetian printer himself along with the humanist and architect Giovanni Giocondo. Like the Aldine publication, the Parisian edition is thus supplemented with commentary by renowned humanists, such as the Enarrationes vocum priscarum in libris De re rustica by Giorgio Merula, the Enarrationes in XII Columellae libros by Filippo Beroaldo, the Interpretatio in hortum Columellae by Pomponio Leto, and the Scholia in hortum Palladii by Giovanni Battista Pio and Antonio Urceo (Codrus).

Renouard Bade, II, pp. 263-264; Schweiger II, p. 1306; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 83.

A bibliographical puzzle

87. Castiglione, Baldassarre (1478-1529)

Il libro del cortegiano del conte Baldesar Gastiglione [sic]. Florence, Benedetto Giunti, 1531 [probably Rome, 1537].

8° (155x96 mm). Collation: A-Z8, AA-BB8. 200 leaves. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on the title-page and on the verso of the last leaf. Blank spaces for capitals, with printed guide letters. Contemporary limp vellum with yapp edges. Traces of ties, title inked by a contemporary hand on the tail-edge. Smooth spine, with inked title. A good copy, title-page slightly soiled, foxing in places; a few spots, stains, and fingermarks. Loss to the upper outer corner of the front flyleaf. minor wear to the upper board-edge and joint, a few stains. The price notice '2:10' inked by an early hand on the title-page. Some maniculae, and reading marks. Pencilled bibliographical annotations on the pastedowns and flyleaves.

Provenance: 'Joanne Caligario' (ownership inscription on fol. A2r, possibly Giovanni Andrea Calegari (1527-1613), Bishop of Bertinoro, and secretary to the Nuncio in Poland).

The extremely rare Cortegiano bearing the colophon 'In Firenze per Benedetto Giunti MDXXXI', and the misspelling of Castiglione – printed as 'Gastiglione' – on the title-page: a fascinating case study for bibliographers.

The first edition of the famous treatise by Castiglione was published by the Aldine press in April 1528 (see no. 80). The first Giuntina appeared a few months later, in October. Second and third editions were issued by the printing house run by the heirs of Filippo Giunta – his sons Bernardo, Giovanni, Benedetto, and Francesco – in April 1529 and April 1531, respectively. The Giuntina press subsequently “entered a severe decline [...] following the fall of the Republic, although the firm continued in its bookselling and stationery business” (Pettas, The Giunti of Florence, p. 43). Benedetto Giunti was admitted to the stationer's guild on 15 October 1532, and his activity as an independent printer started officially in 1533, after the return of political stability in Florence. Five books were published in 1533; however, Benedetto's activity ceased until 1536/37, mainly owing to financial difficulties.

The present edition is the only known publication pre-dating 1533 to feature his name as a printer, although it is generally believed that the Cortegiano might have been printed – as Camerini has suggested – in 1537, possibly in Rome. The colophon bears the fictitious imprint 'Florence 1531', suggesting an intent to show the Giunti press was still active in the city, despite the unfavourable political situation. This edition is apparently a reprint of the aforementioned Cortegiano, actually printed in 1531 by the heirs of Filippo Giunta, along with some relevant variants such as the misspelling of Castiglione as 'Gastiglione' on the title-page, and the use of a different printer's device. Further, there are two groups of four leaves in which the setting of type is different, including on the title-page and colophon: fols. A1, A4, A5, A8, 2B2, 2B3, 2B7, and 2B8.

The paper used throughout is watermarked with an anchor inscribed within a circle, a watermark frequently found in paper from Veneto.

In his correspondence with the British Library (which also preserves a copy of the rare Cortegiano bearing the colophon 'In Firenze per Benedetto Giunti MDXXXI'), Conor Fahy suggested this mysterious edition might have been printed in Venice, where Benedetto's brother, Bernardo Giunti had moved in 1533/34. In 1537, an edition of the Cortegiano was 'really' printed in Florence, in which the misprint 'Gastiglione' on the title-page is corrected.

Camerini Annali 236; Pettas 235-236; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 87.

Dante’s influence on Hebrew literature

89. ‘Immanu’el ben Šhelomoh (ca. 1261-ca. 1332)

צמנאל מחברת ספר [Sefer Machbaroth ‘Immanu‘el. Hebrew]. Eli‘ezer ben Geršom Soncino, 1535.

4° (200x145 mm). Collation: 1-394. [156] leaves. Text in Hebrew. Title-page within woodcut architectural border (frame slightly trimmed). Early twentieth-century brown morocco, over pasteboards. Covers blind tooled in antique style. Marbled pastedowns and flyleaves. A good copy. Some repairs to the title-page, fol. [148] stained, light waterstaining and foxing on a few leaves. Manuscript notes in Hebrew on the title-page and verso of last leaf, censor's signature on recto of last leaf, dated 1597.

Second edition – the first with vocalic punctuation – of this important literary work, first published in Brescia in 1491 by Gershom Soncino, the greatest pioneer of Hebrew printing; the elder Soncino was active in various Italian towns from the late fifteenth century until 1527, when he was forced to flee to Salonika, part of the Ottoman Empire. In 1530, the Soncinos moved to Constantinople and four years later Gershom passed away; his son, Eli‘ezer, continued the business until 1547, issuing at least twenty-eight editions of this signal work.

The Sefer Machbaroth is a composite text divided into twenty-eight chapters that alternate between prose and verse. It was written by the poet 'Immanu‘el ben Šhelomoh, or Immanuel the Jew, known in Italian as Manoello Giudeo. Born in Rome, he lived in numerous towns in central Italy, including Perugia, Fabriano, Fermo, and Camerino, as well as in Verona, while Dante was still living there. The last part of the work contains the short poem Ha-Tofet ve-ha-Eden ('The Hell and Paradise'), an account of the author's journey through Hell and Paradise; the influence of Dante's poem is evident, and numerous episodes from the Commedia would seem to have served as a model.

Adams I-51; Habermann, Soncino 2, p. 83; CB 5269/2; Vinograd II, 153; A. Yaari, Hebrew Printing at Constantinople, Jerusalem 1967, 119. Zedner 324; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 89.

An ‘Apollo and Pegasus’ binding

90. Pindarus (518-after 446 BC)

Pindari Poetae vetustissimi, Lyricorum facile principis, Olympia Pythia Nemea Isthmia. per Joan. Lonicerum Latinitate donata: adhibits enarrationibus, è Graecis Scholijs, & doctissimis utriusque linguae autoribus desumptis.... Andreas Cratander, 1535.

4° (214x135 mm). Collation: α6, A-Z4, a-z4, Aa-Mm4, Nn6. [12], 458, [18] pages. Greek, italic, and roman type. Woodcut printer's devices on the title-page, and verso of the last leaf. Woodcut animated and decorated initials. Roman binding executed between 1545-1547 by Niccolò Franzese for Giovanni Battista Grimaldi. Gold- and blind-tooled dark brown morocco, over pasteboards. Covers panelled with interlocking central lozenge containing the horizontal plaquette of Apollo driving the sun chariot towards Parnassus, upon which Pegasus is standing. Traces of gold and green paint on the plaquette. The motto 'ορθοσ και μη λοξιωσ' is tooled around it. The title 'PIN/DARVS/POETA' is gilt lettered on the upper part of both covers. Spine with three double bands, decorated with a gilt line, alternating with four single bands, decorated with short gilt diagonals. A small foliate tool alternately vertical and in horizontal in the compartments. Gilt edges. Headbands renewed, expert repairs at spine extremities, joints and corners. In a modern brown cloth solander box. A very fine copy, light browning and spotting, repaired neat tear in on one leaf, tiny marginal hole in the final two leaves, a paper flaw to the lower blank margin of fol. t2. Flyleaves slightly wormed. The number '679' inked on the lower margin of the title-page.

Provenance: Giovanni Battista Grimaldi (ca. 1524-ca. 1612; binding); Libreria Ulisse Franchi (sale Florence 8 April 1902, lot 450); the exiled Russian aristocrat Jacques de Zoubaloff (1876-1941); L. A. Barbet (inked ownership inscription on the upper outer corner of the title-page, 'A Barbet 300 c'; see Catalogue de la bibliothèque de feu M. L.-A. Barbet. Première partie, Paris 1932, lot 127, 'Precieux exemplaire portant au centre de chaque plat l'emblème [...] qu'on a longtemps cru être celui de Demetrio Canevari, médecin du pape Urbain VII, mais qui est celui du Duc Pier-Luigi Farnèse, fils du pape Paul III'); the Italian art historian Federico Gentili di Giuseppe (1868-1940); by descent to his daughter Adriana R. Salem, Paris (ex-libris with initials A.R.S. on the front pastedown); sale Sotheby's, 31 October 1977, lot 52); to the London bookseller H. D. Lyon (1917-2004; his notes); Michel Wittock (ex-libris on the front pastedown; see The Michel Wittock Collection. Part I: Important Renaissance Bookbindings, Christie's London 2004, lot 92).

A marvellous example of an 'Apollo and Pegasus' binding: the copy of the second Latin edition of Pindarus' works, bound in about 1545-47 by Niccolò Franzese for the banker Giovanni Battista Grimaldi, from one of the great and wealthy patrician families of Genoa. Anthony Hobson identified three binders in Rome who were engaged by Grimaldi: Maestro Luigi, Niccolò Franzese, and Marcantonio Guillery. Niccolò Franzese was the most innovative among them.

As indicated by his name, Nicolò Franzese – the binder responsible for the Pindar presented here – was a Frenchman by origin, born Nicolas Fery of Rheims. He probably settled in Rome as early as 1526. The cardinal-librarian Marcello Cervini employed him at the Vatican Library from 1549 to 1554, and in 1556 he was appointed Vatican Binder. He worked in Rome for the papal court and other high-profile clients from 1542 until his death in 1570-71.

The covers are panelled with a central lozenge containing the celebrated medallion showing Apollo driving the chariot of the sun towards Mount Parnassus, upon which Pegasus is standing with the Greek motto 'ορθοσ και μη λοξιωσ' ('straight and not crooked') lettered around him. This device, or impresa, is a celebration of virtù, and was invented for Grimaldi by the Sienese humanist and secretary of Pier Luigi Farnese, Claudio Tolomei (1492-1556). Tolomei was further tasked with procuring, for Grimaldi, a 'complete library' – or libreria finita – of about two hundred volumes, in order to further his education. “The choice was to be a balanced one between modern and ancient literature, but Greek poetry, since Grimaldi did not know the language, was provided in Latin translation. This dichotomy, or balance, was given visible expression in the bindings: works in modern languages were to be bound in red morocco, those in classical languages in various shades of green or brown. The library, of about 200 works or volumes, took two years to assemble [...] The task of binding was shared out between three booksellers/binders, who presumably supplied the books as well as providing the gold-tooled morocco covers” (Hobson-Culot, Italian and French 16th-Century Bookbindings, p. 23).

Great collectors have always paid particularly close attention to these precious bindings – stamped for Grimaldi with the distinctive Apollo and Pegasus – owing as much to the quality of their materials and manufacture as to their rarity. Their renown even led to at least two – and possibly more – nineteenth- and twentieth-century binders producing forged or faked Apollo and Pegasus plaquettes, often using sixteenth-century bindings (see no. 118). Anthony Hobson has located 144 true bindings tooled with this medallion plaquette, all of exceptional value: the copy of Pindar presented here is included in his census.

VD16 P-2798; G. D. Hobson, Maioli, no. CII; De Marinis, Legatura artistica in Italia, I, no. 763; Hobson, Apollo and Pegasus, no. 97; Cinq siècles d'ornements, no. 1; Hobson-Culot, Italian and French 16th-Century Bookbindings, no. 5 (all mentioning this copy); Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 90.

Besides Homer, there is Hesiod — Alfred Eckhard Zimmern

92. Hesiodus (fl. 8th-7th century BC)

Ἠσιόδου τοῦ Ἀσκραίου Έργα καὶ Ἠμέραι. Θεογονία. Ἀσρις Ἠρακλέους. Ἄπαντα δὲ μετὰ πολλῶν καὶ καλίστων ἐξηγήσεων. Hesiodi Ascraei Opera et dies. Theogonia. Scutum Herculis.... Bartolomeo Zanetti for Giovanni Francesco Trincavelli, June 1537.

4° (207x147 mm). Collation: †4, α-φ8, ω4. [4], LXXXVIII [i.e. CLXXXVIII] leaves. Greek, roman and italic type. Text in Greek and Latin. Woodcut printer's device on the title-page. Full-page woodcut depicting farm implements and agricultural tools on fol. ξ8v; two woodcut diagrams on fols. o1v and o4v. On fol. †2r seven-line woodcut decorated initial on black ground, and Byzantine headpiece. Headings, initials and headpiece printed in red on fol. α1r. Nineteenth-century half-calf, marbled covers. Spine with five raised bands, title gilt on lettering-piece. A very good copy; light foxing and browning on the first and last leaves. A few contemporary marginal annotations in Greek.

Provenance: 'Gerardi Cerfolii' (Gérard Cerfaux? Ownership inscription on the title-page).

First edition of Hesiod's complete works, containing a first-edition series of Byzantine Scholia, including those by the grammarian Ioannes Tzetze and the Allegoriae in Theogoniam by Ioannes Galenos Diakonos. The Venetian physician and humanist Vittore Trincavelli (1496-1568) was responsible for the edition. A Greek scholar, Trincavelli collaborated exclusively with Bartolomeo Zanetti, from Casterzago (Brescia), editing at least nine Greek editiones principes.

The volume is finely printed, and decorated with woodcut initials and headpieces in Byzantine style, all previously used by renowned Venetian printers Nikolaos Vlastos and Zacharias Kallierges.

The Opera et dies was first printed in Milan in 1480 by Bonus Accursius, whereas the Theogonia and the Scutum Herculis first appeared in the Theocritus issued by the Aldine press in 1495/96. For the commentaries appended to Hesiod's texts, Trincavelli mainly used manuscripts preserved in the Library of San Marco in Venice. The Hesiod of 1537 – dedicated to Florentine philologist Pietro Vettori – was long considered most correct and served as a model for many subsequent editions.

Adams H-470; STC Italian 326; Mortimer Italian, 233; M. Sicherl, Die griechischen Erstausgaben des Vettore Trincavelli, Paderborn 1993, pp. 68-73; Hoffmann II, p. 248; Layton, The Sixteenth Century Greek Book in Italy, p. 98; Sander 3380; A. E. Zimmern, The Greek Commonwealth Politics and Economics in Fifthe-Century Athens, Oxford 1931, p. 93; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 92.

The most famous Italian poetess of her age

95. Colonna, Vittoria (1490-1547)

Rime... di nuovo ristampate, aggiuntovi le sue stanze, e con diligenza corrette. [Venice, Niccolò Zoppino?], 1539.

8° (141x95 mm). Collation: A-F8. [48] leaves, complete with the last leaf blank. Roman and italic type. Old vellum over pasteboards, inked title on the spine. A very good copy. Slightly foxed and waterstained in places.

Provenance: 'di giannantonio Bartholi. Ede sua amicj' (contemporary ownership inscription on the title-page); 'di Paolo franceschi' (later ownership inscription on the same leaf).

Rare second edition, edited by Filippo Pirogallo and containing the same dedication from him to Alessandro Vercelli as in the first edition, which appeared in Parma in 1538. Pirogallo's unauthorized publishing aroused Vittoria's irritation. “The angry poetess could not prevent the piracy edition, because a copy right did not exist at her time. Pirogallo defended himself: 'The annoyance of one single lady has less importance than the demand of so many people'. He asked pardon for some errors, which had 'crept in', because he did not have the original sonnets at hand” (M. Musiol, Vittoria Colonna. A Female Genius of Italian Renaissance, Berlin 2013, p. 167).

In 1539, the Rime by Vittoria Colonna – the most famous Italian poetess of her age – was printed three times: the Florentine edition issued in July by Nicolo d'Aristotile followed by two other prints which appeared in Venice, the first published by Giovanni Marco Salvioni, and the second without mention of a printer or month of publication, but likely attributable to Zoppino.

The present edition contains the same poems as the first: a total of 145 poems, including nine by other authors, with the addition of the stanze 'Quando miro la terra ornata e bella' by Veronica Gambara, called here Stanze aggionte and wrongly attributed to Vittoria Colonna.

Baldacchini Annali, 395; T. Crivelli, “The Print Tradition of Vittoria Colonna's 'Rime'”, A. Brundin (ed.), A Companion to Vittoria Colonna, Leiden 2016, pp. 69-139; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 95.

The Manzoni-Cavalieri-Martini copy

96. Boiardo, Matteo Maria (ca. 1441-1494)

Orlando innamorato. I tre libri dello innamoramento di Orlando... Tratti dal suo fedelissimo essemplare. Nuovamente con somma diligenza revisti, e castigati. Con molte stanze aggiunte del proprio auttore, quali gli mancavano. Insieme con gli altri tre Libri compidi. Pietro Nicolini da Sabbio, March-April 1539.

Two parts in one volume, 4° (199x144 mm). A-Z8, AA-DD8, EE10; Aa-Kk8, L-Q8, Rr-Xx8. 226; 167 (numbered I-XLVI, 47-167) of 168 leaves. Lacking the last blank. Roman type. First title-page printed in red and black within an elaborate architectural woodcut border; on fol. A2v woodcut map of southern France, Switzerland, and part of Germany, showing the geographical disposition of the 'Sequani' and 'Helvetii' fought by Julius Caesar, repeated also on fols. N3v and BB8r of the first part, and on fol. Ff6v of the second part (in the last three appearances a contemporary hand has added at the top of the woodcut the inscription 'FABIUS MAXIMUS PATRIT ROMANUS'); on the second title-page, a large round horseback portrait of Orlando (the same hand has added to the caption in brown ink 'IL CONTE', and 'IL PALADINO'). Early twentieth-century vellum with overlapping edges, ink title on the spine. Gilt edges. A good copy, worm track, partially repaired, in the lower margin of fols. G3-O8, occasionally affecting text (especially between fols. G3 and I5). Some marginal stains, upper margin cut short, slightly trimming the running title on a very few leaves.

Provenance: Giacomo Manzoni (1816-1889; ex-libris on the front pastedown; see Bibliotheca Manzoniana. Catalogue des livres composant la Bibliothèque de feu M. le Comte Jacques Manzoni, Città di Castello 1893, lot 3065); Giuseppe Cavalieri (1834-1918; ex-libris on the front flyleaf; see T. De Marinis, Catalogue des livres composant la Bibliothèque de M. Giuseppe Cavalieri à Ferrara, Florence 1908; no. 273); Giuseppe Martini (1870-1944; his pencilled notes on the front flyleaves).

Rare edition – in a fine copy once belonging to the libraries of the great book collectors Giacomo Manzoni and Giuseppe Cavalieri – of the complete Orlando Innamorato printed by Nicolini da Sabbio, in which the three books originally written by Boiardo are continued and completed by three other books composed by Nicolò Degli Agostini (fl. first quarter of the sixteenth century) and introduced here with a separate title-page bearing the printing date of March 1539. These supplementary books were published together with the three Libri by Boiardo up until the end of the seventeenth century.

Editions of Boiardo's poem in its original instantiation – before Francesco Berni's censored revision of 1541, which became the standard text for all subsequent editions – are all extremely rare. Of the 1495 edition, the first in three books (published at Scandiano by Pellegrino de' Pasquali on behalf of Boiardo's widow, Taddea Gonzaga) issued in 1,250 copies, none have survived beyond the end of the eighteenth century.

As for Degli Agostini's continuation, the fourth book was originally published in Venice in 1505 in a lost edition, the fifth book was first published in Venice by Rusconi in 1514. The sixth part was probably first published by Zoppino in 1521, but no copy has survived, and was followed by a 1524 reprint (see no. 72).

Adams B-2314; Sandal, Il mestier de le stamperie de i libri, p. 199, no. 8; Melzi-Tosi, p. 93; N. Harris, Bibliografia dell' “Orlando Innamorato”, nos. 25a-25b; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 96.

The Marcolini Commedia that belonged to Marcus Fugger, with Dante’s portrait by Stimmer as an unrecorded single sheet

102. Alighieri, Dante (1265-1321)

La Comedia di Dante Aligieri con la nova espositione di Alessandro Vellutello.... Francesco Marcolini, June 1544.

4° (236x153 mm). Collation: AA-BB8, CC10, A-Z8, AB-AZ8, BC-BI8. [442] leaves. Italic and roman type. Three full-page woodcuts at the beginning of each cantica; eighty-four woodcut vignettes in the text. An extra leaf, not present in the volume when it was originally issued, is bound here before the title-page; it bears the woodcut portrait of Dante from the Elogia virorum literis illustrium by Paolo Giovio (Basel 1577), issued here with some variants as a single sheet. Contemporary French calf, covers within gilt fillets, decorated with elaborate strapwork and floral tools on pointillé ground; title lettered at the centre of the upper cover, author's name at the centre of the lower cover. Later smooth spine gilt-tooled with a diaper pattern. Edges gilt and gauffered with a floral design. Covers restored and inlaid. On the verso of the front flyleaf, an early hand – likely that of Fugger himself – has copied the words of Dante's epitaph in Ravenna, restored by Bernardo Bembo in 1483. A very good copy, occasionally browned and stained.

Provenance: Marcus Fugger (1529-1597; his autograph signature on the front pastedown); Paul Harth (twentieth century; ex-libris on the front pastedown).

The first Commedia to contain the new and important commentary by the Lucchese Alessandro Vellutello (b. 1473), in a copy finely bound for the great bibliophile and member of the celebrated Augsburg banking dynasty, Marcus Fugger, who in 1560 succeeded his father Anton as head of the family firm. This copy is in the first state of the Marcolini edition, in which terzina 64-66 of the Purgatorio's second canto is missing due to a printing oversight (fol. V7r). The book is rightly famous for its illustrations, which were all newly designed for this edition. Each woodcut records one or more scenes from the illustrated cantos and closely relates to Vellutello's glosses. The vignettes were possibly designed by Giovanni Britto, who worked as an engraver for Marcolini, and were likely cut by Marcolini himself.

The volume is in a strapwork, gilt-tooled, and now extensively restored binding, produced for Fugger in the Parisian ateliers of Jean Grolier, as suggested by the elaborate interlaced decoration, patterned tools, and dotted background. The binding may have been executed by either Claude de Picques or Gommar Estienne, both of whom produced work for the Bibliothèque Royale.

A notable addition in the present copy is an extra leaf which was not included in the volume as originally published; the leaf has been bound here for Fugger as a frontispiece and bears the woodcut portrait of Dante taken from the Elogia virorum literis illustrium by Paolo Giovio (Basel, Perna, 1577). The Elogia woodcuts were designed by the Swiss painter and printmaker Tobias Stimmer (1539-1584), who was sent by Perna to Lake Como in 1569-1570 to produce drawing copies of the famous portrait collection assembled by Giovio. In 1577, Perna published the woodcut portrait of Dante, cut after Stimmer's designs, in the Elogia virorum literis illustrium, together with sixty-seven other portraits of illustrious men of letters, each surrounded by a strapwork frame. In the leaf bound into the present copy, however, Dante's portrait is lacking the border found in the original edition, and the name of the poet is spelt in the variant form 'Dante' instead of the 'Danthes' of the Basel publication; although the font used is identical, the name is perhaps stamped separately letter by letter, rather than printed as a single word. This represents an unrecorded issue of the woodcut portrait and may therefore suggest that the Stimmer series was issued individually as single-sheet prints.

Adams D-94; Mortimer Italian 146; Casali Annali, 72; Batines I, pp. 82-84; Mambelli 30; Essling 545; Sander 2328; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 102.

A book for affluent bibliophiles

103. Colonna, Francesco (ca. 1433-1527)

La Hypnerotomachia di Poliphilo, cioe pugna d’amore in sogno. Dou’egli mostra, che tutte le cose humane non sono altro che Sogno: & doue narra molt’altre cose degne di cognitione. Sons of Aldo Manuzio, 1545.

Folio (286x195 mm). Collation: [π]4, a-y8, z10, A-E8, F4. [234] leaves. Roman type. Aldine device on the title-page and verso of the last leaf. 172 woodcuts, eleven of which are full page. Blank spaces for capitals, with printed guide letters. Contemporary vellum over pasteboards with yapp edges and running stitches to spine. Smooth spine with title and date inked in black. A very good copy. First quire slightly browned. A few marginal fingermarks, pale waterstain to the upper corners of fols. a2 and a3. Minor foxing. more prominent on first two quires and the margins and woodcuts of fols. k8, l1r, and l2. Small repair to lower inner corners of fols. a1v and a2r, and to fol. E1r, without any loss; larger repair to fol. a4, affecting some letters on the recto and verso;. Some bibliographic notes in pencil on the front and rear pastedowns.

The rare second edition of the Poliphilo, the most famous illustrated book of the Renaissance. The first edition was printed by Aldus Manutius in 1499 (see no. 43), and the new printing of 1545 suggests a renewed interest in the work, in Italy as well as abroad, for within a year a French translation also appeared, followed by an English translation in 1592.

The second edition is a page-for-page reprint: the book was printed by Aldus' heirs employing the same woodblocks as the 1499 edition, with the exception of seven that were either broken or missing. The redesigned and newly cut woodcuts are found on fols. b4v, b5r, e2v, e5r, o3v, q5v, and x2r.

The text was set in a different roman type. “A single roman type has been used in a single body, although in 1545 the current state of typography offered the possibility of differentiation on roman and italic (both letter forms had small capitals). But there is a major difference: where there were printed initials in 1499 [...] here, in 1545, the printer has left open blank spaces, in which a guide letter has been printed for the illuminator who could then paint in a beautiful initial by the buyer's order [...] this means that the son of Aldus [Paulus Manutius] felt that the market for this book was with affluent bibliophiles: he produced an edition intended to be transformed into a deluxe copy by the buyer. What is special is that in 1545 this fashion had all but passed, so that this edition may be termed an anacronism” (F. A. Janssen, “The Typographical Design of the 'Poliphilus' (1499-1600)”, p. 69). Further, in 1545 the title of the book was here translated into Italian as La Hypnerotomachia di Poliphilo, with the added phrase Dov'egli mostra, che tutte le cose humane non sono altro che Sogno, the author demonstrating in his book “that all human things are nothing but a dream”.

Adams C-2414; Mortimer Italian, 131; Renouard Alde, 133.14; Ahmanson-Murphy 335; L. Donati, “Di una copia tra le figure del Polifilo (1499) ed altre osservazioni”, La Bibliofilia, 64 (1962), pp. 163-183; G. Mardersteig, “Osservazioni tipografiche sul Polifilo nelle edizioni del 1499 e 1545”, Contributi alla storia del libro italiano. Miscellanea in onore di Lamberto Donati, Firenze 1969, pp. 221-242; F. A. Janssen, “The Typographical Design of the 'Poliphilus' (1499-1600)”, Idem, Technique and Design in the History of Printing, 't Goy-Houten 2004, pp. 57-74; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 103.

A handsome French painted entrelac binding, from Benedetto Varchi’s library

104. Alamanni, Luigi (1495-1556)

La coltivatione... al christianissimo re Francesco Primo. Robert Estienne, 1546.

4° (209x136 mm). Collation: a-t8, u-x2, *2. [158] leaves. In this copy fols. *1-*2 bearing the dedicatory epistle to 'Madama la Dalphina' are bound after fols. x1 and x2, consisting of the privilege of François I dated 28 August 1546. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on the title-page. Contemporary French, possibly Parisian, red morocco gilt over pasteboards. Covers with black-painted strapwork, central oval cartouches with foliate tools within a black-painted strapwork frame, black-painted border within gilt rules. Smooth spine gilt in compartments, the compartments decorated with diaper-patterned gilt rules forming diamonds alternately painted black. Gilt board-edges, inside dentelles. Gilt edges. Spine extremities skilfully repaired. In a modern green cloth solander box. A fine copy, ruled in red throughout (somewhat faded). Title-page laid down; light spotting in places, a few pale marginal waterstains. Small hole at the margin of fol. c4.

Provenance: Benedetto Varchi (1503-1565; ownership inscription 'Bened. Varchi‘ on the title-page); Francesco Mainardi from Ferrara (late eighteenth-century ownership inscription on the recto of the front flyleaf 'Franciscus Mainardi Ferrariensis aere proprio acquisit 1792'); Michel Wittock (ex-libris on the front pastedown; see The Michel Wittock Collection. Part I: Important Renaissance Bookbindings, Christie's London 2004, lot 4).

The first edition, in the first issue, of this famous work, presented here in a copy once owned by the distinguished Florentine humanist and poet Benedetto Varchi, and in its handsome French painted entrelac binding, in all likelihood executed in Paris. Alamanni's work is a didactic poem in 5,000 endecasillabi sciolti, composed in imitation of Vergil's Georgica and dedicated to King François I, while the preliminary epistle is addressed to the dauphine Catherine de Medici. It is the only book that the celebrated printer and prominent scholar Robert Estienne issued entirely in a modern language other than French – even the imprint on the title-page is in Italian, 'Stampato in Parigi da Ruberto Stephano Regio Stampatore'.

Following the discovery of his part in a conspiracy against the Medici in 1522, Luigi Alamanni fled from Florence to France, where he joined the royal court and was swiftly recognised as one of the leading Italian poets of the age. This is also the only book printed by Estienne in his larger italic type.

Of this edition, two different issues are recorded, the first bearing on its title-page the statement 'CON PRIVILEGI', the second 'Con privilegi'. According to Renouard, there are copies without the errata on the verso of fol. u2, in the present copy the errata is instead printed.

Between 1538 and 1550 Alamanni was in direct correspondence with Benedetto Varchi, the owner of this precious copy, who may have received the book as a gift from the author himself. In a letter written from Padua on 8 October 1539 to Carlo Strozzi, Varchi states he had read in manuscript a Georgica “in 5 libri toscani d'un nostro fiorentino” – in all likelihood Alamanni's Coltivazione – “che quando che sia si stamperà e vi impararete su tutta la vita contadina, la quale fu la prima che si vivesse e la più utile e più santa e quieta (B. Varchi, Lettere 1535-1565, ed. V. Bramanti, Roma 2008, p. 73).

For other books once owned by Varchi see items nos. 23 and 81 in the present catalogue.

Adams S-409; Mortimer French 10; Renouard Estienne, 68.22; Armstrong 39.49; Schreiber 88; M. Prunai Falciani, “Manoscritti e libri appartenuti al Varchi nella Biblioteca Riccardiana di Firenze”, Accademie e biblioteche d'Italia, 53 (1985), pp. 14-29; A. A. Sorella, “La Biblioteca Varchi”, B. Varchi, L'Ercolano, Pescara 1995, pp. 155-166; R. Norbedo, “Alcuni libri posseduti da Benedetto Varchi”, Lettere italiane 56 (2004), pp. 462-467; P. Scapecchi, “Ricerche sulla biblioteca di Varchi con una lista di volumi da lui posseduti”, V. Bramanti (ed.), Benedetto Varchi 1503-1565, Roma 2007, pp. 309-318; Autografi di letterati italiani. Il Cinquecento, Roma 2009, pp. 337-351; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 104.

Orlando printed on blue paper

106. Ariosto, Ludovico (1474-1533)

Orlando furioso... nouißimamente alla sua integrita ridotto & ornato di varie figure. Con alcune stanze del S. Aluigi Gonzaga in lode del medesimo. Aggiuntoui per ciascun Canto alcune allegorie, & nel fine una breue espositione et tauola di tutto quello che nell’opera si contiene... Venice, Gabriele Giolito de’ Ferrari, 1546. [together with:] Dolce, Lodovico (1508-1568). L’Espositione di tutti i vocaboli, et luoghi difficili, che nel Libro si trouano; Con una brieue Dimostratione di molte comparationi & sentenze dell’Ariosto in diuersi auttori imitate. Raccolte da M. Lodouico Dolce.... Gabriele Giolito de' Ferrari, 1547.

Two parts in one volume, 4° (215x149 mm). Printed on blue paper. Collation: A-Z8, AA-KK8; *8,**8, ***8, ****6. 264; [30] leaves. The second part bearing on its separate title-page the imprint date '1547'. Roman and italic type, the cantos printed in two columns. The first title-page within an elaborate architectural border containing Giolito's phoenix device; imprint set in type in a cartouche in the lower part of the border; in the second part different printer's devices on the title-page, and at the end. Medallion portrait of Ariosto on fol. *8v. Forty-six woodcuts (ca. 47x87 mm), one at the beginning of each canto. The argumenti within a woodcut border. Woodcut historiated initials in two different sizes. Seventeenth-century Italian limp vellum, gilt tooled (probably a remboîtage). Covers framed within double fillets, small floral tool at each inner corner. At the centre, large gilt coat of arms of an unidentified bishop. Traces of ties. Spine with three raised bands, emphasized by gilt fillets. On the first and last compartments the early inked shelfmark 'K V 2'. A good copy, light foxing. A few spots on the title-page, the verso of the last leaf somewhat soiled. Fols. A4v and A5r lightly discoloured. Wormholes repaired to the lower margin of the last quires. Minor loss to the outer upper corner of fol. HH2. Small early ink stains, the upper margin of some leaves lightly trimmed. A few early marginal annotations and reading marks.

Provenance: early seventeenth-century ownership inscriptions on the verso of fol. *2, 'Jo. Pompilio mano propria', repeated twice, and 'Io Domenico [?]'.

The rare Giolito 1546 quarto edition of Orlando, in an extraordinary copy printed on blue paper: one of the finest illustrated books produced in the Italian Cinquecento.

Gabriele Giolito de' Ferrari printed his first Furioso in 1542, a publication which goes far beyond previous editions by other printers: for the first time the text of the poem is supplemented with commentary, and each canto is introduced by a woodcut vignette, as well as an argomento. The success of this innovative publication was immediate and unprecedented, and the Furioso became the 'symbol' of the printing house itself. From 1542 onwards the poem was constantly re-issued, both in quarto and, as of 1543, in the cheaper and more popular octavo format, thus proclaiming Giolito's success as a printer and businessman, and transforming the Furioso into a 'classic' of modern literature.

The 1546 edition opens – like that of 1542 – with Giolito's dedicatory epistle to Henri II de Valois, then Dauphin de France, who had married Catherine de' Medici in 1533. The text was edited by the Venetian Lodovico Dolce (1508-1568), one of the closest collaborators of the Venetian house, and was additionally supplemented by his Espositione di tutti i vocaboli et luoghi difficili, che nel Libro si trovano, which soon became the most frequently reprinted commentary to the Furioso. Furthermore, in the edition of 1546, Giolito includes – in response to the Cinque Canti first published in 1545 by the rival Aldine printing house – his 'novelty', i.e., eighty-four stanzas dealing with the history of Italy, which he had in turn obtained from Ariosto's son Virginio.

Another remarkable aspect of the Giolito Furioso is the illustrative apparatus that accompanied the cantos: forty-six woodcuts comprising a cycle whose stylistic quality, refined design, and abundance of detail represents a significant step in the illustration of the poem. Each vignette shows multiple scenes pertaining to the canto at hand, thereby visually capturing the multifarious and ever-changing narrative structure of the poem. The various episodes diminish in size in the receding planes of the woodcut, and are thus conceived as separate but simultaneous actions: the majority of the vignettes depict two or three scenes from the related canto, although two woodcuts each include four episodes, and one – the vignette for Canto XLI with a surface area of only 47x87 mm – presents an incredible five scenes simultaneously.

In 1541 the Venetian Senate had granted a ten-year privilege for the woodblocks or 'intagli novi' of the Furioso, giving Giolito the exclusive right for using this illustrative apparatus. They were then re-used, with a few changes, in numerous subsequent editions issued by the Venetian printer until the quarto edition of 1559. The identity of the skilled artist or artists responsible for designing and cutting the vignettes that introduce each canto of the Furioso remains unknown; recently the name of the Bolognese painter Jacopo Francia (1484-1557) has been put forth, while a once -plausible attribution to Giorgio Vasari is now generally refused.

The 1546 Giolitina is further enriched by a woodcut medallion portrait of Ariosto taken from a block first used for the Furioso of 1542, and accompanied here by a sonnet. The source is the profile portrait introduced by Niccolò Zoppino in his famous Furioso of 1530, and ultimately derived from Titian. The artist employed by Giolito re-interpreted this earlier portrait, transforming it into a classical bust of Ariosto dressed in a toga and crowned with a laurel wreath. This new iconography was an immediate success and was readily imitated by other printers.

Surviving Giolitine on blue paper are quite rare. An edition in carta turchina of the 1554 Furioso was sold in the Pinelli sale for 25 francs, and Angela Nuovo records copies on blue paper of the Giolito Furioso of 1543, 1544, 1549, 1551, and 1554. In this copy the Furioso of 1546 is supplemented by Dolce's Espositione from the reprint of 1547. Copies of the Furioso of 1546 and 1547 printed on blue paper are unrecorded. As previously stated, Giolito continued to re-issue his Furioso, often changing the dates on the title-pages during printing in order to re-present unsold copies back on the market, or inserting quires from other issues. The interior composition of this volume may therefore testify to hectic phases in the production and 'packaging' of a copy on blue paper commissioned by a rich but impatient customer, as well as the aim to supplement the text of the poem with a 'new' version of the Espositione, which – as claimed on the its title-page, dated 1547 – is now corrected and enlarged.

Bongi Annali, pp. 126, 144; Agnelli–Ravegnani, p. 76; D. Javitch, “Gabriele Giolito 'packaging' of Ariosto, Boccaccio and Petrarca in Mid-Cinquecento”, F. Fido - R. A. Syska-Lamparska - P. D. Stewart (eds.), Studies for Dante. Essays in Honor of Dante Della Terza, Fiesole 1998, pp. 123-133; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 106.

Outstanding copy on blue paper, from a sixteenth-century private press

113. [Claudianus, Claudius ca. 370-404] Sanuto, Livio (ca. 1520-1576)

Al reuerendissimo et illustrissimo signor il cardinal di Trento La rapina di Proserpina di Liuio. Venice, [Gabriele Giolito de’ Ferrari ?], 1551.

8° (184x118 mm). Printed on blue paper. Collation: A-H8. [64] leaves. Complete with the last blank. Roman and italic type. Numerous large woodcut decorated initials. Handsome Roman eighteenth-century red morocco, over pasteboards. Covers framed within elaborated dentelle, at the centre, gilt-tooled coat of arms of the Doge Marco Foscarini. Spine with five raised bands, compartments decorated with gilt acorn tools, title in gilt on black morocco lettering piece. In a half-leather box. A fine copy. On the front flyleaf 'rarissimo 16'.

Provenance: Marco Foscarini (1726-1797; armorial binding), 117th Doge of Venice; Henry Chandon de Briailles (1898-1937; ex-libris on the front pastedown and recto of front flyleaf). Old armorial stamp on the title-page, very faded.

A superb copy on blue paper of the exceedingly rare first edition of Livio Sanuto's translation, or adaption, into Italian of the poem De raptu Proserpinae by Claudian. One of the few copies known, it is likely to have been privately printed for the Bishop of Trent, Cristoforo Madruzzo (1512-1578), who is also the dedicatee of the publication, and is well known for having the honour of hosting one of the most important events of the sixteenth century: the Council of Trent. The volume is finely bound in red morocco with the arms of the Venetian Doge Marco Foscarini, famous eighteenth-century collector of Aldines and Italian books.

Another copy on blue paper is in the Biblioteca Braidense in Milan, and is considered a printing proof for the second edition of 1553 (“Esemplare con correzioni mss. sul front. e data corretta da 1551 a 1553, e molte correzioni mss. nel testo; probabile bozza di stampa per l'edizione del 1553”). Three 'normal' copies are recorded in the libraries at Harvard, Yale, and Cambridge University, with the latter copy lacking the dated title-page and thus possibly a copy of the 1553 edition (see Adams S-376, and Adams S-377).

The reprint of 1553 is attributed by Dennis E. Rhodes to Gabriele Giolito de' Ferrari on the basis of the large woodcut capitals used there, and which occur in many other books published by the Venetian printer. However, “Gabriel Giolito de Ferrari [...] rarely indulged in anonymous printing, or printing on behalf of other publishers. He was too successful and too independent on his own” (D. E. Rhodes, Silent Printers, p. viii).

Edizioni per i Madruzzo (1540-1659). Dedicatari, committenti e autori nella famiglia dei principi vescovi di Trento, Trento 1993, no. 44; D. E. Rhodes, Silent Printer: Anonymous Printing at Venice in the Sixteenth Century, London 1995, p. 245 (for the 1553 edition); Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 113.

Defending Heliocentrism just nine years after the publication of Copernicus’ De revolutionibus

115. Doni, Anton Francesco (1513-1574)

I Marmi del Doni, Academico Peregrino. Al Mag.co et Eccellente S. Antonio da Feltro Dedicati. Francesco Marcolini, 1552 - 1553.

Four parts in one volume, 4° (207x150 mm). Collation: A-X4; Aa-Pp4; a4, B-X4; AA-MM4. 167, [1]; 119, [1]; 166, [2]; 93, [3] pages. Italic type. Woodcut printer's device on last pages of each part within full-page scrollwork borders, title-page of part 1 with large globe device; parts 2-4 each with a different device on title-pages. Forty-four woodcut illustrations in the text (three repeats) in various sizes, including portraits of Doni, the printer Marcolini, and other writers and cultural figures. Smaller woodcuts within ornamental frames of scrollwork and grotesques. Woodcut headpieces, decorated initials. Contemporary limp vellum. At the centre of both covers the blind-stamped coat of arms of Prince Augustus Frederick, Duke of Sussex. Inked title on the spine and tail-edge. Covers somewhat soiled, minor loss to the bottom of the spine. An attractive copy, first title-page slightly dusted, small worm-tracks skilfully repaired in the gutter of the first leaves, slight staining in places.

Provenance: from the library of the Duke of Sussex Augustus Frederick, sixth son of King George III (1773-1843; armorial binding); Arthur & Charlotte Vershbow, acquired from John Fleming, 1966 (ex-libris on the recto of the front flyeleaf; see The Collection of Arthur & Charlotte Vershbow, Christie's New York 2013, lot 163).

First edition of one of the most famous and esteemed works by the eccentric Florentine writer and former priest Anton Francesco Doni, a collection consisting mainly of a series of imaginary dialogues involving more than a hundred different characters, some real, some fictive, who are portrayed conversing upon the marble steps (I marmi) of the Duomo in Florence: the wide-ranging topics under discussion are unrelated and include, in the second part, the invention of printing (fol. Aa4r) and the publishing production of Aldus Manutius (fols. Cc2v-Cc4r). Further, the first dialogue contains a noteworthy passage of particular import to the reception history of Copernican theory during the sixteenth century, when the 'buffo' Carafulla defends the heliocentric system just nine years after the publication of Copernicus' De revolutionibus.

On fol. LL1r of the fourth part the title-page of another of Doni's works, the Inferni, is reproduced to announce the forthcoming publication, followed by a description of its contents on fol. LL2r and LL2v. This is probably the first time in the history of printing in which the imminent publication of a new work is promoted through the insertion of its soon-to-be-released title-page within another published work.

Adams D-824; Mortimer Italian, 165; Casali Annali, 95; Gamba 1368; C. Ricottini Marsili-Libelli, Anton Francesco Doni scrittore e stampatore, Firenze 1960, no. 40; R. Mortimer, “The Author's Image: Italian Sixteenth-Century Printed Portraits”, Harvard Library Bulletin, 7 (1996), pp. 45-46; M. R. Macchia, “Le voci della scienza nei 'Marmi' di Anton Francesco Doni: la divulgazione scientifica fra oralità e scrittura”, R. Librandi - R. Piro (eds.), Lo scaffale della biblioteca scientifica in volgare, secoli XIII-XIV: atti del Convegno, Matera, 14-15 ottobre 2004, Firenze 2006, pp. 469-484; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 115.

... and printed on blue paper

117. Alighieri, Dante (1265-1321)

La Divina Comedia di Dante, di nuovo alla sua vera lettione ridotta con lo aiuto di molti antichissimi esemplari.... Gabriel Giolito de' Ferrari and Brothers, 1554 - 1555.

12° (136x72 mm). Printed on blue paper. Collation: *12, **6, A-Z12, AA-BB12. [36], 598, [2] pages. Italic and roman type. On the title-page and on the verso of the last leaf woodcut printer's device. Woodcut medallion portrait of Dante on fol. *3v; twelve woodcuts in text, mostly smaller copies of the woodcuts in the Marcolini edition of 1544. Woodcut initials and headpieces. Nineteenth-century vellum with yapp edges, over pasteboards. Smooth spine, with inked author's name. Pastedowns and flyleaves renewed. A good copy, in the first quires the upper and lower margins of some leaves have been restored. Repair to the upper margin of the last leaf. A few waterstains, spots, and ink stains. Fols. *3, A1, B3 and B4 from an ordinary copy, and later coloured blue. Possibly an eighteenth-century hand has annotated the upper margin of the first leaf with the number '1265', corresponding to Dante's date of birth.

Another copy of the famous Divina Commedia edited for Giolito by the prolific Lodovico Dolce (1508-1568), one of Giolito's closest collaborators, and here exceptionally printed on blue paper. The colophon bears the date '1554'.

The copy presented here is one of the few copies of the Commedia printed by Giolito on blue paper, a mode of production first introduced by Aldus Manutius in 1514. This stylistic choice was in keeping with oriental practices that were particularly widespread in Venice, a city with strong trading links to the East as well as a thriving dye industry. Like his illustrious predecessor, Giolito reserved the use of blue paper for those volumes he considered exceptional and evidently commissioned by distinguished clientele, while still providing a less expensive alternative to vellum.

Copies of this edition printed on 'carta turchina' are recorded by Bongi in his Annali di Gabriel Giolito de' Ferrari. “Se ne conoscono esemplari in carta turchina, come quello bellisimo già appartenuto all'avv. Alberghini di Roma, citato da Ugo Foscolo e dal Batines, passato poi presso il sacerdote Raffaelo Pagliari di Roma, e andato in vendita coi suoi libri nel Dicembre 1891, catalogo primo” (Bongi Annali I, p. 475).

Adams D-101; STC Italian 210; Bongi Annali I, pp. 475-476; Batines I, pp. 90-91; Mambelli 39; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 117.

The Great Apollo and Pegasus Myth

118. Plutarchus (ca. 45-120)

La prima [- seconda] parte delle Vite... nuouamente da M. Lodouico Domenichi tradotte. Con due tauole, le quali sono poste nel fine della seconda parte.... Gabriele Giolito de' Ferrari and Brothers, 1555.

Two volumes, 4° (256x168 mm). I. Collation: *4, A-Z8, AA-ZZ8, AAA-PPP8. [8], 973, [3] pages. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on the recto of fol. PPP8. II. Two parts. Collation: †4, a-z8, aa-kk8, ll4; aaa-fff8, ggg4. [8], 535, [1]; [104] pages. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on both title-pages, and a smaller version at the end of each part. Woodcut animated initials, and headpieces.

Handsome Venetian bindings, executed around 1555 by Anthon Lodewijk. Gilt-tooled red morocco, over pasteboards. Gilt and blind fillet borders. Central medallion with radiating tongues-of-flame within lobed panel, the two volumes slightly differently tooled with solid outline and azure tools. The central medallion of the first volume overstamped with forged Apollo and Pegasus plaquette. Spines with five double raised bands, decorated with one, and outlined with two gilt fillets. Compartments gilt, open circle border at the head and foot of the spines. Edges of the boards decorated with a double vertical line in blind. Edges gilt and gauffered with double dotted-line frame. Missing four ties, probably in red silk. Vol. 1 with minor repairs to the corners, rebacked preserving most of the original backstrip, some gilding renewed. Skilful repairs to the corners and joint of vol. 2, a little worming in flyleaves. In modern cloth solander cases, in brown for vol. 1 (on the spine 'PLUTARCHIS VENEZIA 1555 CANEVARI'), and in green for vol. 2 ('PLUTARCHA [SIC] LA SECONDA PARTE DELLE VITE, VENETIAN BINDING VENICE 1555'). A fine copy, some spotting. Minor ink stain in the first volume, a few leaves uniformly browned. On the recto of the front flyleaf of the first volume, the inked note 'Reliure Canevari Iere moitié du XVime S. Genes'.

Provenance: Pietro Benincasa (ownership inscription on the title-pages 'Pietro Benincasa', partly removed from the first volume); Curtio Bertini, from Colle val d'Elsa (sixteenth-century ownership inscriptions on the title-pages, 'Di Curtio Bertini' and 'Di Curtio Bertini da Colle' partly removed from the first volume). By the early twentieth century the two volumes became separated:

Vol. 1: the bookseller in Florence Tammaro De Marinis (1878-1969), 1911; early twentieth-century ex-libris engraved by Stern on the front pastedown, eradicated; Cartier library (sale Sotheby's Monaco, 28 November 1979, lot 1366); GDV (monogram blindstamp on the title-page); Rossignol (sale Paris, Valleriaux expert, 27 February 2003, lot 557); Michel Wittock (see The Michel Wittock Collection. Part I: Important Renaissance Bookbindings, Christie's London 2004, no. 97).

Vol. 2: Baron de Sant'Anna (sale Brussels 16 May 1925, lot 105); Michel Wittock (ex-libris on the front pastedown; see The Michel Wittock Collection. Part i: Important Renaissance Bookbindings, Christie's London 2004, no. 97).

A remarkable copy, in its original Venetian binding, of the first edition of Domenichi's Italian translation of the Vitae by the Greek historian Plutarch. The two volumes have only recently been reunited after a century's separation; they were bound around 1555 by the famous Flemish craftsman Anthon Lodewijk or Lowies, who was active in Venice between 1553 and 1557.

Anthon Lodewijk “seems to have arrived in Venice not later than 1553. In his mature work he imitated the style of the 'Mendoza Binder' or the 'Fugger Binder', but using his own kit of Italian tools. These are found in presentation copies of books printed by Giolito in 1554, 1556 and 1557, for his distinguished clientele, which included among others Jakob Fugger and Antoine Perrenot de Granvelle. Lodewijk probably left Venice soon afterwards and is next found in Augsburg binding Greek manuscripts and printed books for Johann Jakob Fugger and decorating them with the Italian tools brought from Venice” (Hobson-Culot, Italian and French 16th-Century Bookbindings, p. 43).

These volumes demonstrate his more mature, elaborate Venetian style; in all likelihood the bindings were executed on behalf of the printer Giolito for a notable recipient. For a similar binding see for example the copy of the Giolito edition of Musso's Prediche (1554) presented by the Venetian printer to the Duchess of Urbino, Vittoria Farnese della Rovere (see Hobson, Renaissace Book Collecting, p. 131, pl. 80).

By the early twentieth century the two volumes had become separated, and the first one now offers a striking example of a perfectly genuine Renaissance binding to which a forged medallion had been added. In fact, on its cover a forged Apollo and Pegasus round plaquette was carefully applied, possibly before 1911, when it appeared in a catalogue published by the Libreria De Marinis in Florence. The volume was later seen in Sotheby's sale of the Cartier library in Monaco on 28 November 1979. The Apollo and Pegasus medallion may have been made either in the nineteenth century by the best known Apollo and Pegasus forger, the Milanese binder Vittorio Villa (d. 1892), who often worked for Guglielmo Libri; or later, in the first quarter of the twentieth century by Domenico Conti-Borbone, another bookbinder active in Milan who had inherited Villa's tools after his death. These skilful forgeries were sought by some collectors as specimens of fine Renaissance bindings or desirable curiosities.

STC Italian 528 (vol. 1 only); Bongi Annali, pp. 479-480 (“É difficile trovare uniti i due volumi”); H. Harrisse, “Les falsification bolognaises. Reliures et livres”, Bulletin du Bibliophile, (1902), pp. 428-442, 445-666, 505-523; (1903), pp. 449-452; De Marinis, Legatura artistica in Italia, I, no. 3146, pl. 4 (vol. 1); M. Wittock, “À propos de reliures, vraies ou frelatées, au médallion d'Apollon et Pégase”, Bulletin du Bibliophile, (1998), pp. 330-336 (no. 33, only vol. 1); M. Wittock, “Il medaglione di Apollo e Pegaso”, L'oggetto libro 2000, no. 37 (only vol. 2); A. Hobson, Renaissance Book Collecting, App. 9, nos. 9a-b; Hobson-Culot, Italian and French 16th-Century Bookbindings, no. 15 (only vol. 2); Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 118.

The device of three interlaced crescents

121. Boccaccio, Giovanni (1313-1375)

Il Decamerone... alla sua intera perfettione ridotto, et con dichiarationi et auuertimenti illustrato, per Girolamo Ruscelli.... Vincenzo Valgrisi and Baldassare Costantini, 1557.

Two parts in one volume, 4° (219x167 mm). Collation: *4, A-Z8, AA-II8; a-g4 (fol. HH2 signed H2). [8], 496, [16]; [56] pages. Roman and italic type. Valgrisi's serpent device on both title-pages, and at the end. Each giornata introduced by a large woodcut (fols. A5v, D2v, H5v, L8v, O8v, R8v, T5v, Y2r, BB7r, DD6v). Numerous woodcut animated initials. Contemporary French calf, over pasteboards. Covers within double frame of multiple blind fillets, the inner frame with gilt fleurons at outer corners. Device of three interlaced crescents tooled in gilt at centre. Traces of ties. Spine with five raised bands, compartments tooled with a single floral tool, title and the number 'XIII' lettered in gilt. Edges gilt. Minor wear at the head of the spine. A very fine copy, slightly browned on the first leaves, a few paper flaws, minor foxing, some fingermarks.

The third and revised Valgrisi edition of Boccaccio's masterpiece, lavishly illustrated, and edited for the Venetian printing house by Girolamo Ruscelli (ca. 1518-1566). The first Decameron from the press of Valgrisi – the famous printer of French origin, active in Venice from 1540 'all'insegna d'Erasmo' – had appeared in 1552, and was intended to rival the successful Giolito editions. The work is supplemented by Ruscelli's Vocabolario generale di tutte le voci usate dal Boccaccio, while the preliminary leaves contain, as an introduction, La vita di messer Giouan Boccaccio, written by Francesco Sansovino (1521-1586). The Valgrisi Decameron is one the finest editions of Boccaccio's work produced in the sixteenth century and is rightly famous for its handsome full-page illustrations introducing each giornata, all newly designed and mentioned – as “figure nuoue & bellissime” – on the title-page. Each woodcut is framed within an architectural border including putti, grotesque figures, antique vases, and floral motifs, and depict scenes from the life at the villa of the brigata of young men and women who had fled from Florence during the plague. The success of the publication was immediate, and Valgrisi re-issued Boccaccio's work in 1554, 1555, and 1557, thereby establishing a new iconography of the Decameron in print. The blocks and borders were later re-used by other Venetian printers, including Agostino Zoppino, Onofrio Farri, and Alessandro Vecchi.

The Valgrisi Decameron presented here is in a fine contemporary French binding. The covers bear at the centre the device of three interlaced crescents, a feature which might suggest the binding was executed for Diane de Poitiers (1499-1566), mistress of King Henry II of France and from 1548 duchess of Valentinois, who used the triple-crescent device. The exquisite library assembled by this femme bibliophile remained in her Château d'Anet until its sale in 1724. For a similar binding on a copy of Cardanus's De subtilitate (1561) see The Michel Wittock Collection. Part I: Important Renaissance Bookbindings, lot 30. It is noticeable that the crescents also appear on bindings from the King's own library.

G. H. Bushnell, 'Diane de Poitiers and Her Books', The Library, 4 (1926-1927), pp. 283-302; J. Porcher, 'Les livres de Diane de Poitiers', Les Trésors des Bibliothèque de France, 26 (1942), pp. 78-89; The Michel Wittock Collection. Part I: Important Renaissance Bookbindings London 2004, lot 30; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 121.

The first appearance in print of the Galateo

123. Della Casa, Giovanni (1503-1556)

Rime, et Prose... Con le Concessioni, & Priuilegij di tutti i Prencipi. Niccolò Bevilacqua for Erasmo Gemini, October 1558.

4° (220x157 mm). Collation: a4, b2, A-X4, Y2. [12], 170, [2] pages. Roman type. Woodcut ornaments on the title-page. Woodcut animated initials, one blank space for capital on fol. A1r, with printed guide letter. Eighteenth-century vellum, over pasteboards. Smooth spine, title lettered in gilt. Edges speckled red. Minor wear to the upper portion of the spine. A wide-margined copy, in excellent condition.

Provenance: Giacomo Manzoni (1816-1889; Bibliotheca Manzoniana. Catalogue des livres composant la Bibliothèque de feu M. le Comte Jacques Manzoni, Città di Castello 1893, lot 4495, 'Rare'); Puccinelli Sannini family (ex-libris on the front pastedow); Federico Lobetti Bodoni (ex-libris on the front pastedown).

A very fine copy of the first edition of Della Casa's Rime et Prose, from the celebrated library of Italian bibliophile and bibliographer Giacomo Manzoni.

The collection of Italian writings in prose and verse by the Florentine Della Casa was posthumously edited from his manuscripts by his former secretary Erasmo Gemini de Cesis and dedicated to Giacomo Querini. Alongside his Rime and the Oratione to Charles V, the Venetian collection of 1558 contains the first appearance in print of the well-known Galateo, one of the most famous and influential courtesy books, written by Della Casa between 1551 and 1555 in the form of advice given by an old gentleman to a young student, “et qui passa longtemps pour le livre en prose italienne le mieux écrit après le Decameron de Boccace” (J. Balsamo, De Dante à Chiabrera, p. 211). The Galateo was named after Galeazzo Florimonte, Bishop of Sessa, and printed almost immediately in a separate edition.

This edition was printed by Venetian printer Niccolò Bevilacqua with the types and fine woodcut initials which Paolo Manuzio used to print for the Accademia Veneziana. Renouard thus includes this edition in his Annales de l'Imprimerie des Alde.

Adams C-806; Renouard Alde, 175.15 (“bien executé et peu commun”); J. Balsamo, De Dante à Chiabrera. Poètes italiens de la Renaissance dans la bibliothèque de la Fondation Barbier-Mueller, Genève 2007, II, no. 89; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 123.

The author, and the recipient of the book in the poet Molza’s villas; An association copy printed on blue paper

124. Caro, Annibal (1507-1566)

Apologia de gli Academici di Banchi di Roma, contra M. Lodouico Casteluetro da Modena. In forma d’uno Spaccio di Maestro Pasquino. Con alcune Operette del Predella, del Buratto, di Ser Fedocco.... Seth Viotti, November 1558.

4° (210x150 mm). Printed on blue paper. Collation: A-Z4, a-i4, k6, l-m4. 268, [16] pages. Roman and italic type. Engraved printer's device on the title-page and woodcut device on verso of fol. m4. Woodcut animated initials. Eighteenth-century quarter-leather, marbled covers. Smooth spine with gilt title on lettering-piece, compartments framed in gilt tools. A very good copy, some minor browning.

Provenance: given as a gift by Annibal Caro to his friend, the writer Marco Antonio Piccolomini (1504-1579; ownership inscription on the title-page: 'Di M. Anto piccolomini & degli Amici MDLVIII Dono dell'Autore'); on the verso of the front flyleaf is a sonnet by Giacomo Marmitta, unpublished at the time and written in Piccolomini's own hand, dedicated to 'Comendador Caro'; marginalia by Piccolomini on fols. F4v and k6v.

Remarkable association copy, printed on blue paper, of this testimony to one of the greatest literary quarrels of the Renaissance; the work is presented here in its variant 'c' form, as evinced by the finely engraved printer's device, instead of the more common woodcut one, on the title-page, and by the text reading “LA nobil Secchia harà per numer un drago?” that appears on the recto of fol. i1 (p. 241).

The dispute centered on the poem Venite all'ombra de' gran Gigli d'oro ('Come to the shade of the great golden lilies'), which had been commissioned by Alessandro Farnese and which Caro had composed in praise of the French monarchy. The poem was harshly criticized by the philologian Ludovico Castelvetro (1505-1571) due to its lack of Petrarchian style and use of linguistic inventions, especially in its incorporation of spoken language. Caro replied to Castelvetro's criticism with his Apologia, which ends with a Corona of nine injurious sonnets through which Caro comes to accuse Castelvetro of having murdered Alberico Longo, Caro's advocate in this impassioned quarrel.

The present copy was given as a gift by Caro to his friend Marco Antonio Piccolomini, member of one of the most distinguished Sienese families and co-founder – his academic nickname was 'Sodo' – of the celebrated Accademia degli Intronati, a pivotal institution in the cultural life of 1550s Siena, and one of the most ancient academies in the world. The correspondence attests to the close friendship between Caro and Piccolomini, as well as Piccolomini's attempt to incite contemporary scholars like Girolamo Ruscelli to support Caro against Castelvetro. It is thus particularly noteworthy that Piccolomini has transcribed a sonnet pertaining to the quarrel on the flyleaf of the present copy. The poem, 'Lingua d'atro venen' tutta conspersa', was composed by the poet Giacomo Marmitta (1504-1561; see no. 134) and was unpublished at the time; it would only be printed some years later, in 1569, when it was included to accompany Caro's response in his collected Rime, issued by the Aldine press.

The marginal note written by Piccolomini on fol. F4v is also interesting as it provides a previously unknown element in our reconstruction of this contemporary intellectual milieu: Piccolomini marks a passage concerning two inscriptions located in the villas of the Modenese poet Francesco Maria Molza (1489-1544), Caro's friend and the uniquely non-Sienese member of the Accademia degli Intronati. Piccolomini attributes both inscriptions – 'Ancor essa è modo di parlar plebeo', and ‘perchè l'uso della lingua nobile, non riceve esso col sostantivo manifesto, se non davanti' – to Ludovico Molza, Francesco Maria's father.

Only one other copy printed on blue paper is known, held by the Biblioteca Palatina in Parma.

Adams C-739; Gamba 276; C. Di Felice, “La seconda edizione dell'Apologia di Annibal Caro: un censimento delle sopravvivenze e un esemplare in Normandia”, S. Fabrizio-Costa (ed.), Autour du livre ancien en Normandie. Intorno al libro antico in Normandia, Bern 2011, pp. 165-194; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 124.

The Cesi 'Seven Hills’

125. Plutarchus (ca. 45-120)

La prima [- seconda] parte delle Vite di Plutarco Tradotte da M. Lodovico Domenichi. Con gli suoi Sommarii posti dinanzi a ciascuna Vita.... Gabriele Giolito de’ Ferrari, 1560.

Two volumes, 4° (225x161 mm). I. Collation: *4, A-Z8, AA-ZZ8, AAA-PPP8. [8], 937, [3] pages; II. Two parts, each with separate title-page. Collation: †4, a-z8, aa-kk8, ll4; aaa-eee8, fff10 (fol. fff5 signed 'ggg'). [8], 535; [101] pages. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on title-page of both volumes, on the recto of fol. PPP8, on the title-page of the Tabulae (fols. aaa1r), and on the verso of fol. fff10. Nearly contemporary uniform Roman binding, brown morocco over pasteboards. Covers within blind fillets and narrow gilt roll, at the outer corners the Cesi 'seven hills'. At the centre small floral tools and fleuron in gilt. On the upper cover of the first volume the gilt inscription in a cartouche '.VITE. DI. PLUTARCA. I. PARTE'; on the upper cover of the second one ‘‘.VITE. DI. PLUTARCA. 2. PARTE', likewise in gilt lettering. Spines with seven raised bands, underlined with gilt fillets, rebacked; title and volume numbering in gold. Original, handsome gauffered and painted edges, the fore-edge showing the Cesi coat of arms, a tree above seven hills. Good copies, foxing in places, trace of old stamps, now illegible, on both title-pages.

Provenance: from the library of the Cesi family (armorial binding).

A magnificently bound copy of the Italian edition of Plutarch's Vitae, translated for the Venetian printer Giolito by his collaborator, the polymath Lodovico Domenichi (1515-1564). The two-volume publication is a substantial re-issue – introduced with a newly recomposed title-page bearing the printing date '1560' – of the first edition, which had appeared in 1555 (see no. 118).

As their fine armorial binding stamped with the seven-hills coat of arms attests, the volumes presented here were once preserved in the library assembled by the aristocratic Cesi family which was highly connected in Rome and the Papal States. The most outstanding member of this family was undoubtedly the naturalist, scientist, and Duke of Acquasparta, Federico Cesi (1585-1630), founder of the Accademia dei Lincei (Lincean Academy) in 1603, and one of the most influential patrons of Galileo Galilei. The entry relating to a copy of the Giolitine Plutarch of 1560 is included in the inventory of Federico's books located at Acquasparta, the Cesi palace, listing also volumes owned by other members of the family, which never entered the Lincean Academy. The inventory Libri diuersi dell'Heredita sudetta, held in the Academy Archives (ms Archivio Linceo XXXII) was compiled between February and April 1631, in order to divide the inheritance among Frederico's heirs – his second wife, Isabella Salviati, sister of the mathematician Francesco Salviati, and his brother, Giovanni Federico Cesi. Plutarch's Lives is listed among the volumes put in a case filled with moral and historical books (‘Cassa N, Morali et Historici'): “P.a parte delle vite di Plutarco tradotte da Lod.co Domen[i]chi con li suoi Sommarij con la dichiarat.ne dei paesi [pesi] in Venetia 1660. [i.e. 1560] del Giolito”.

STC Italian 528 (describing a slightly different issue); M. T. Biagetti, La Biblioteca di Federico Cesi, Roma 2008, p. 172, no. 748; Eadem, “Dispersed Collections of Scientific Books. The Case of the Private Library of Federico Cesi (1685-1630)”, F. Bruni - A. Pettegree (eds.), Lost Books. Reconstructing the Print World of Pre-Industrial Europe, Leiden-Boston 2016, pp. 386-399; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 125.

Se ne trovano copie in carta grande ed in carta turchina — S. Bongi

126. Pigna, Giovanni Battista (1529-1575)

Gli Heroici di Gio. Battista Pigna, a Donno Alfonso da Este II. Duca di Ferrara V.... Gabriele Giolito de' Ferrari, 1561.

4° (210x152 mm). Printed on blue paper. Collation: A-M4, N6, *4, **4. 105, [19] pages. Complete with fol. N6 blank. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on the title-page, a different device on fol. N5v. Woodcut animated initials, head- and tailpieces. Fol. L4v within woodcut architectural border. Nineteenth-century cardboards, covered with brown paper. Spine with title in gilt lettering. A good copy, a few repairs to the lower gutter, not affecting the text.

Provenance: from the library of Count Henry Chandon de Briailles (1898-1937; ex-libris on the recto of the front flyleaf).

First and only edition of this famous heroic poem, exceptionally presented in the only-extant copy printed on blue paper.

The Heroici was composed by the renowned humanist Giovan Battista Nicolucci, better known as Giovanni Battista Pigna, secretary to Alfonso II, Duke of Este, historian at the Ferrara court and great commentator of Ariosto's Orlando Furioso. The work is dedicated by Pigna to his illustrious patron, and narrates, over forty-nine ottava rima stanzas, the true event of the duke's fall from his horse during a tournament. The poem is introduced by three books in prose, in which Pigna expounds his theory on tragic poetry and the heroic epic and provides an analysis of the peculiar features of these poetic genres.

Bongi states that of Pigna's Heroici “se ne trovano copie in carta grande ed in carta turchina”, one of which is in the hands of the “cav. Andrea Tessier di Venezia”, referring to the library of Andrea Tessier, sold in Munich in 1900 by Rosenthal, which contained a copy “tiré sur papier bleu” (lot 534), possibly purchased by Henry Chandon de Briailles. A copy on blue paper was also sold in London in 1783, at the sale of the distinguished library collected by Thomas Croft. The catalogue Bibliotheca Croftsiana lists the entry “Pigna (Gio. Batt.) gli Heroici 4° perg. Vineg. per Gab. Giolito 1561. printed upon blue paper”.

Adams P-1208; Bongi Annali II, p. 121; Olschki Choix, 18620; Nuovo-Coppens, I Giolito e la stampa nell'Italia del XVI secolo, Genève 2005, p. 423; Bibliothek Tessier. Katalog eins grossen Theils der Bibliotheken des verstorbenen Chevalier Andrea Tessier und des Marchese de***. Versteigerunge in München vom 21.-23. Mai 1900 durch Jacques Rosenthal, München 1900; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 126.

Rampazetto’s re-issue of the Marcolini Commedia, unrecorded in the Dante bibliography

133. Dante, Alighieri (1265-1321)

La Comedia di Dante Alighieri con la nova esposizione di Alessandro Vellutello.... Venice, Francesco Rampazetto, 1564 [at the end: Francesco Marcolini for Alessandro Vellutello, 1544].

4° (223x150 mm). Collation: AA-BB8, CC10, A-Z8, AB-AZ8, BC-BH8, BI8. 441 of [442] leaves, lacking only the last blank leaf, BI8. In this copy, fols. F3-F6, and AY3-AY6 are misbound. Roman and italic type. Rampazetto's woodcut device and headpiece on the title-page. Marcolini's colophon, dated 1544, on the recto of fol. BI7. Three full-page and eighty-four smaller woodcuts. Seven-line woodcut animated initial on black-lined background on fol. AA2r; smaller animated initial on the verso. Late seventeenth-century bazzana leather, over pasteboards. Spine with four raised bands, underlined with gilt friezes; each compartment decorated with small floral tools, title in gold on red morocco lettering-piece. Edges speckled red. Corners of both covers restored, later flyleaves; minor losses to the lettering-piece. Front hinge slightly weak. A good copy, title-page rather browned and soiled. Some foxing and spotting; a few fingermarks and ink stains, more significant on fol. AR1. The upper margin of some leaves are slightly trimmed. A tear on fol. AZ8 has been carefully restored.

Provenance: a small, old, illegible stamp on the title-page; the Tuscan clergyman Giovanni Ciabattini (nineteenth-century ownership inscription on the title-page).

The second known copy of a Rampazetto's re-issue of Marcolini's famous 1544 edition, the illustrated Commedia supplemented with the Vellutello commentary (see no. 102). Francesco Rampazetto somehow came into possession of an unsold, and possibly defective, stock of Marcolini's twenty-year-old edition and replaced some leaves. He reset the Marcolini title-page with his own address, setting the line in a roman capital type of various sizes. He also set the dedication to Paul III in a large italic font (fol. A2r), while the first page of the Letter to the readers (fol. A2v), and a portion of the Descritione de lo Inferno (fols. A7 and A8) were set in a small roman type.

The extremely rare Rampazetto re-issue was, until now, known only in a unique and incomplete copy preserved in the library of the University of Notre Dame. In that copy, fols. BB1 and BB8 (both illustrated), as well as the last blank BI8 are lacking, and only fols. AA1-AA2 and AA7-AA8 are reset. On the contrary, this newly discovered copy is complete from a textual point of view, lacking only the last blank leaf. Most importantly, it contains more leaves reset by Rampazetto, as well as leaves misprinted by Marcolini.

They are as follows:

- fols. AY3-AY6 (Par. xv) were reset by Rampazetto with the text in the same large italic he used for the dedication to Paul III (fol. A2r), while the commentary is cast in the same small roman type used for fols. A2v, A7 and A8. In fact, as he had no small italic type, he used a small roman type in place of the italic.

- the four central leaves of quire K were misprinted (K3v on the verso of K5r, K4v on the verso of K6r, and vice versa) by Marcolini himself, as they are in his 1544 type. This further suggests that Marcolini kept some incomplete or bad copies, which were sold to Rampazetto who had to reset the leaves missing in this copy; instead, he did not reset the misprinted leaves.

A different matter is the variant at the end of fol. V7r, which is present in this copy as well as in the copy at Notre Dame: a terzina (Purg. II, 64-66) was omitted in the Marcolini edition, and as the 63rd line came at the bottom of the page, Rampazetto could add these lines in hand-printing, with different spacing and in a darker ink, using the letter 'u' for the 'v' found in Marcolini as well as, in the second line, the letter 'e' for the ligature '&t' used by Marcolini (in the present copy the impression of these lines is grey and blurry).

This newly discovered copy is therefore of the greatest significance, and gives precious insight into the history of the Venetian press. “In 1564, the printer Francesco Rampazetto had in some way come into possession of unsold stock of the twenty year-old 1544 Marcolini edition [...] No listing of 16th-century Dante editions includes this imprint. Its extreme rarity is due to its odd history, a curiosity in the annals of early Dante publishing, providing insight into the commercial wiles and ways of the Venetian press during this period” (Renaissance Dante in Print).

For Marcolini's edition: Adams D-94; Mortimer Italian, 146; Casali Annali, 72; Batines I, pp. 82-84; Mambelli 30; Essling 545; Sander 2328; University of Notre Dame, Renaissance Dante in Print (1472-1629) (accessed January 2018); Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 133.

It should be a Parmesan binding... — Bernard Quaritch

134. Marmitta, Giacomo (1504-1561)

Rime di M. Giacomo Marmitta Parmeggiano. Seth Viotti, 1564.

4° (206x152 mm). Collation: A4, 2A-Z4, a-c4. [8], 198, [10] pages. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on the title-page. Woodcut animated initials and headpieces throughout the text. Contemporary (Parma?) brown, gilt-tooled morocco, over pasteboards. Covers within a broad border with an interlacing design and small floral tools, central shaped compartment built up with small tools, including circles, semicircles, and fleurs-de-lis, at the centre of the front cover the gilt lettering 'OVE HA VERA VIRTU SVO ALBERGO FIDO', and 'BEN CHE BASSO ET HVMIL VENIR M'AFFIDO', on the lower one. Spine with four raised bands, decorated with single gilt fillets, laid down. Gilt edges. Flyleaves renewed in the late nineteenth century, around the time the book was offered by Quaritch. A very fine copy, a few leaves slightly browned.

Provenance: the London bookseller Bernard Quaritch (see Examples of the Art of Book-Binding and Volumes Bearing Marks of Distinguished Ownership. Catalogue 166, London 1897, no. 397: “it should be a Parmesan binding with a motto”); Leo S. Olschki (1861-1940; ex-libris on the front pastedown; see Le livre en Italie à travers les siècles, Firenze 1914, no. 121 “Au milieu du premier plat cette inscription en lettres d'or: “Ove ha vera virtu suo albergo fido”, et du second plat: “Ben che basso et humil venir m'affido”, and pl. LXXXIII).

First and only edition, posthumously published, of Marmitta's collected poems, in a fine and unusual contemporary binding, likely executed in Parma itself. The mottoes stamped on both covers are unrecorded.

The publication is dedicated by the printer, Viotti, to the Duke of Parma and Piacenza, and by Marmitta's adopted son, Ludovico Spaggi, to the Cardinal Giovanni Ricci of Montepulciano, the poet's lifelong patron.

Giacomo Marmitta was born in Parma in 1504. At the age of twenty he moved to Venice, where he became acquainted with Pietro Bembo, Pietro Aretino, and Lodovico Dolce. In 1538, after spending time in the service of Marino Grimani, Patriarch of Aquileia, he was appointed secretary to the future cardinal Ricci. In Venice he also became a member of the Accademia della Fama, founded by Federico Badoer, as well as a close friend of Giovanni Della Casa.

A meeting with the Italian priest Filippo Neri in 1556 proved to be a critical turning point in his life. Neri encouraged Marmitta to follow a more retired life, and his poetry during this period undergoes a shift from secular to spiritual. Perhaps because of his late conversion, Marmitta never published his poems (see no. 124), although before his death a few rhymes had appeared in collective anthologies edited by various printers.

It was only after his death that his adopted son gathered his complete poetic oeuvre into a single manuscript. The 1564 publication is based on this manuscript and is divided into two parts; it contains 282 poems, most of which are sonnets. At the end is an appendix with sonnets written by others in response to the author. The rhymes, described by the printer as 'dotte e leggiadre' ('learned and graceful'), range in subject matter, reflecting Marmitta's early interest in love as well as the religious topics with which he was more concerned following his meeting with Filippo Neri.

Adams M-623; Gamba 1509; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 134.

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