Gastronomy, Agriculture and Botany Philobiblon

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

In original speaking-binding

[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

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.

Besides Homer, there is Hesiod — Alfred Eckhard Zimmern

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.

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

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.

The first appearance in print of the Galateo

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 first enlarged Latin edition with a full set of splendid large woodcuts, in contemporary German binding

Mattioli, Pietro Andrea (1501-1578)

Commentarii in sex libros Pedacii Dioscoridis Anazarbei de Medica materia... Adiectis magnis, ac nouis plantarum, ac animalium Iconibus, supra priores editiones longe pluribus, ad uiuum delineatis.... Vincenzo Valgrisi, 1565.

Folio (357x243 mm). Collation: *6, **8, A-M6, 2A-Z6, Aa-Zz6, Aaa-Zzz6, Aaaa-Zzzz6, Aaaaa-Zzzzz6, Aaaaaa-Ffffff6, Gggggg4, Hhhhhh6. [172], 1459, [13] pages. Roman, italic, and Greek type. Woodcut printer's devices on the title-page, and fols. Gggggg4v and Hhhhhh6v. Full-page woodcut portrait of Mattioli within elaborate strapwork border with cartouche and flanking figures on the verso of fol. M6. Over 900 large woodcuts of plants, herbs, animals, insects, and distillation processes, most of them by Giorgio Liberale and Wolfgang Meyerpeck, the majority filling three quarters of the page. Strictly contemporary German blind-tooled pigskin over wooden boards, dated '1569' on the upper cover. Covers within concentric rolls, tooled with palmettes and foliate motifs, and the images of the Salvator Mundi, John the Baptist, St Paul, and King David. Remains of metal clasps to the upper cover. Spine with five raised bands. A few scratches to the lower cover, corners restored. A wide-margined copy on thick paper with neat impressions of the woodcuts. Repair to the upper outer corner of the title-page, without any loss. Marginal spots, some quires browned, large stain in the upper margin of the last fifteen leaves, tiny wormholes affecting the lower cover and last quires. Small round stamp erased from the title-page.

Provenance: early ownership inscription on the title-page inked out; two annotations on the front pastedown: ‘Collationné le 9 juin 1733', and ‘à P.re Charsin ainé 1816 ed.on estimée et la meilleure'.

First enlarged Latin edition, the first with a full set of the splendid large woodcuts by Giorgio Liberale from Udine of the most popular Renaissance commentary of Dioscorides (fl. 50-70 AD). According to Hunt, the Venetian edition of 1565 is the “most valued for its completeness”.

The first edition of Mattioli's celebrated commentary on Dioscorides' De materia medica – the most significant botanical book from antiquity and the most authoritative source on medical botany during the Renaissance – first appeared in the Italian language in Venice in 1544 as an unillustrated edition titled Di Pedacio Dioscoride Anazarbeo Libri cinque della historia et materia medicinale. The publishing initiative was met with immediate success, and unauthorised editions soon appeared, including that of 1549, printed in Mantua. The event led Mattioli to produce an expanded Latin edition of his work, which was issued in 1554 by the Venetian printer Vincenzo Valgrisi and included new information on herbs and plants, along with the first appearance of small woodcuts that would assist in the reading and studying of the text.

Mattioli dedicated his work to Emperor Ferdinand I of Habsburg, who named him personal physician of his son Ferdinand, governor of Bohemia. Mattioli moved to Prague in 1555, and this high patronage allowed him to employ a number of artists and engravers to produce near full-page illustrations for his Dioscorides. The Venetian Commentarii of 1565 is the first edition to contain – along with the small woodcuts that first appeared in 1554 – over 600 near full-page illustrations designed by the Italian artist Giorgio Liberale, who was also active at the Imperial court, and cut by Wolfgang Meyerpeck, a leading printer and block cutter from Meissen. These woodcuts are considered among the most impressive illustrations of natural history. They appear primarily in the Czech edition printed in Prague in 1562, as well as the subsequent German edition, likewise issued in Prague in 1563 by Jiri Melantrich in partnership with Vincenzo Valgrisi. These large woodcuts are “the culmination of technical virtuosity in botanical woodcut design, being images of considerable size and unprecedented complexity [...] morphologically detailed and carefully shaded images whose style contrasts notably with the airy, simple elegance of Fuchs' illustrations. Apart from the close massing of foliage, fruit, and flower, such details as veins and even hairs are often depicted or suggested with great skill” (Bridson-Wendel, Printmaking in the Service of Botany, no. 5).

The 1565 Latin edition published by Valgrisi is also the first to be supplemented, in the last quire, with Mattioli's De ratione distillandi aquas ex omnibus plantis, and contains a number of additional zoological and genre illustrations not included in the previous editions of Mattioli's masterpiece.

This edition is rarely found in its strictly contemporary binding, as it remarkably is in this copy. This fine German binding was executed – as attested by the date stamp on the front cover – in 1569. One of the rolls used in its production is the 'Salvator-Johannes der Täufer-Paulus-David', which was often employed in Nuremberg for stamping books for the church councillor Hieronymus Paumgärtner the Younger (1525-1602).

Adams D-672; Hunt 94; Nissen BBI 94; Bridson-Wendel, Printmaking in the Service of Botany, Pittsburgh 1986, no. 5; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 136.

Sausage ‘alla fiorentina’

Grazzini, Antonfrancesco (1504-1584)

Lezione di Maestro Niccodemo dalla Pietra al Migliaio: Sopra il Capitolo della Salsiccia del Lasca. Domenico and Francesco Manzani, 1589.

8° (157x108 mm). Collation: A-D8. 60, [4] pages. Roman and italic type. Woodcut printer's device on the title-page and on the verso of the last leaf. Later vellum over pasteboards. Spine with four raised bands, with inked title and imprint. A good copy, slightly browned and foxed throughout, heavier to fols. B1-C1; a few marginal stains in the last leaves.

Provenance: faded ownership inscription on the title-page no longer legible.

The first and very rare edition of this gastronomic burlesque work in praise of pork and sausage, dedicated by the Florentine printer Domenico Manzani to the Archconsul of the Accademia della Crusca, Pier Francesco Cambi.

Grazzini was a member of the Accademia degli Umidi, which wanted to revive the Florentine tradition of burlesque poetry. In 1582, he was co-founder of the renowned Florentine Accademia della Crusca, adopting the nickname, or nome di Crusca, of 'Lasca'. The booklet was issued from the press of Domenico Manzani, mostly engaged by this Florentine academy, and well-known for the printing, in 1591, of the Commedia edited by the Crusca, the first modern critical edition of Dante's masterpiece.

The Lezione contains the composition in verse Capitolo sopra la salciccia, supplemented with an extensive commentary. Grazzini celebrates here many different kinds of food, but comes to the conclusion that pork meat is the finest of all and that sausage is the most delicious part of the pork, preferable to any other. He then gives the recipe for sausage 'alla fiorentina' (in Florentine style), which, according to him, is the absolute best, and reports several entertaining stories related to sausage with comic and occasionally erotic effect.

STC Italian 370; C. Spalanca, Anton Francesco Grazzini e la cultura del suo tempo, Palermo 1981; F. Pignatti, “Il ‘Comento di maestro Nicodemo dalla Pietra al Migliaio' del Lasca. Preliminari per un'edizione e note critiche”, A. Corsaro - P. Procaccioli (eds.), Cum notibusse et comentari-busse. L'esegesi parodistica e giocosa del Cinquecento. Seminario di letteratura italiana Viterbo, 23-24 novembre 2001, Manziana 2002, pp. 99-108; M. Plaisance, Anton Francesco Grazzini dit Lasca (1505-1584). Écrire dans la Florence des Médicis, Manziana 2005; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 163.

The Roman Gardens of the Baroque

Falda, Giovan Battista (1643-1678)

I Giardini di Roma. Con le loro Piante Alzate e Vedute in Prospettiva.... Giovanni Giacomo De Rossi, [ca. 1680].

Oblong folio (342x471 mm). [21] engraved plates, including the title-page and dedication to Pope Innocent XI, engraved by Arnold Van Westerhout after Giovanni Battista Manelli, and nineteen landscape views by G. B. Falda and Simon Felice. Late nineteenth-century half-vellum, marbled covers. Marbled edges. A very good copy, a few marginal stains.

First edition – offered here in its first issue with the plates unnumbered – of the most beautiful garden book produced in the Roman Baroque. Falda's work illustrates the layout and embellishment of nine of the finest gardens of Rome dating from the mid-sixteenth to the mid-seventeenth century. The publication includes bird's-eye views and plans of the Vatican Gardens, those on Quirinal Hill, and, among others, the Villas Mattei, Pamphili, Borghese, Ludovisi, and Montalto. The gardens were designed by Alessandro Algardi, Carlo Maderno, Ottavio Mascarini, Annibali Lippi, Cavalier Rainaldi, Domenico Fontana, Flaminio Pontico, and Giacomo Del Duca. The book is of particular importance as it shows the gardens before they were destroyed or underwent extensive alterations.

As a boy, Falda was sent to Rome to work in the studio of Gian Lorenzo Bernini. His skills attracted the attention of the publisher Giovanni Giacomo De Rossi, for whom Falda engraved the series Le fontane di Roma ('Fountains of Rome'), Palazzi di Roma ('Palaces of Rome'), and the present Giardini. His work became very popular among participants of the Grand Tour and tourists in the second half the seventeenth century and sold very well.

Berlin Katalog 3492; Kissner 133; Libreria Vinciana 4440; Rossetti 4831; G. B. Falda, Li giardini di Roma. Faksimile-Neudruck der Ausgabe Rom 1683, Nordlingen 1994; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 217.

Ex dono Auctoris

Meyer, Cornelius (1629-1701)

Nuovi ritrovamenti divisi in due parti con trè Tavole in lingua Latina, Francese, & Ollandese. Parte prima. Delli ordegni per cavar pali. Armature della calamita. Del modo di levare i sassi sott’acqua, e trovar la lega dell’oro, e dell’argento... Rome, Giovanni Giacomo Komarek, 1696. (bound with:) Idem. Alla Santità di N.S. Papa Innocentio XI. Beatissimo Padre. [Rome, Giacomo Antonio de Lazzeri Varese, 1679]. (bound with:) Idem. Nuovi ritrovamenti dati in luce dall’Ingegneiro [sic] Cornelio Meyer per eccitare l’ingegno de’ virtuosi ad aumentarli, ò aggiungervi maggior perfettione... Rome, Giovanni Giacomo Komarek, 1689. (together with:) Idem. L’Arte di restituire à Roma la tralasciata Navigatione del suo Tevere. Divisa in tre parti.... Giacomo Antonio de Lazzari Varese, 1685.

Two volumes containing four works, in near uniform bindings.

First volume. Three works bound together, folio (411x261 mm). I. [28] unsigned leaves, including title-page with a large engraved vignette showing a dragon with the caption 'Drago come viveva il primo di Decembre 1691 nelle paludi fuori di Roma'; dedication to the Grand Duke of Tuscany Cosimo III dated Rome, 22 June 1696; 22 leaves consisting of plates with letter-press explanatory text, all of them half-page (except two full-page and three double-page); 4 leaves of indices in Latin, French, and Dutch. Roman and italic type. II. Collation: A14. [14] leaves. Issued without title-page, opening with dedicatory epistle to Innocent XI. Twelve numbered half-page engravings accompanied by explanatory text below, printed on recto only. Roman and italic type. The plates are partly dated between 1677 and 1679, engraved by Giovanni Battista Falda and Jacques Blondeau, after Meyer. III. Collation: [π]2-1, A-D2, 2D2, E2-1. [12] leaves. Roman and italic type. Typographical ornament on the title-page. Fifteen engravings in the text, two of which are double page. Most of the plates signed by Meyer as designer, and sometimes as both designer and engraver. The double-page astronomical engraving is signed by Ioannes Baptista Honoratus Polustinus.

Contemporary limp vellum. Extremities of the spine damaged. Fine, unsophisticated copy. Worm-tracks on the upper margin of several leaves not affecting the text, some leaves somewhat loose.

Second volume. Three parts, folio (401x265 mm). [92] leaves, 15, [1] pages. All leaves are unsigned, except for fols. [9-10] signed A-A2 and the final 8 leaves signed A-D2. The edition includes: two additional titles with dedication to Innocent XI and a large allegorical engraving present here in two states (one variant has the caption title 'Fluminis Fluctus Letificant Civitatem' written on a cartouche on top of the engraving, while the second version has 'D.O.M.' instead); a letter-press title with a woodcut ornament; sixty-eight engraved illustrations and maps (six double-page, one full-page and the rest half-page). The final 15 pages contain the relations of the Sacra Congregatio riparum Tyberis, and end with the colophon 'Romae, ex Typographia Rev. Cam. Apost., 1685'. The first illustration of part two, a double-page map showing the Delineatione del stagno di Maccarese, is captioned: 'In Roma, nella stamperia di Nicol'Angelo Tinassi, 1681'. The comet plate referred to in the list of plates is absent, in keeping with all other copies. At the bottom of the figura quarta in Part one are two contemporary ink drawings of technical structures. Roman and italic type. Woodcut head- and tailpieces.

Contemporary vellum, over thin boards. Spine with inked title, partly damaged and with a few losses. A genuine copy, with good margins. Some browning and foxing, double-page map of Delinatione del stagno di Maccarese heavily browned.

Provenance: I. Meyer's own inscription 'Ex dono Auctoris' on the verso of the front flyleaf; on the front pastedown nineteenth-century armorial ex-libris of the Odescalchi family, bearing the motto 'per servire s'acquista servi quando poi', and engraved by Michelassi. II. Meyer's own inscription 'Ex dono Auctoris' on the verso of the front flyleaf.

Two-volume set containing four rare first editions by Cornelius Meyer (Cornelis Meijer), both volumes bearing the author's inscription 'Ex dono Auctoris'. Dedication copies of these already rare works are extremely hard to come by separately, and even more so bound together, and in copies complete with all their parts. This is the case of this set, in which the first volume also bears the ex-libris of the Odescalchi family, and it is especially noteworthy that Pope Innocent XI Odescalchi was the patron of Meyer as well as the dedicatee of the second edition bound in this volume.

I. The first work bound – Nuovi ritrovamenti divisi in due parti... Parte prima – though printed seven years later, in 1696, forms the first section of a two-part work, which gathers some of the author's technical inventions and scientific experiments. The second part, Nuovi ritrovamenti dati in luce, was issued first, in 1689, but both texts are clearly related insofar as the index to both parts is printed at the end of the Part one.

The plates show inventions and experiments undertaken by Meyer in Rome and other places like Livorno and Civitavecchia: among others, the large magnet of the Grand Duke of Tuscany, instruments and technical tools to raise cannons and poles from below the sea and to break stones underwater, methods for melting metals, canalization and other hydraulic works, a plan of the harbor of Livorno, fortification works, spectacles, games and curiosities including how to break a glass with a musical instrument, the eclipse of Jupiter's first satellite, a map of the mouth of Po river, chariots, the design of a room, the orbit of a comet, and fountains. One of the plates included here shows the Civitavecchia harbor, where the author recovered the hull of a sunken vessel.

The third work included in the first volume – the one bound in the middle – is the rarest of all three. It was issued without a title-page and opens with a dedication to Innocent XI Odescalchi. Meyer's name appears at the end of the dedication, while the imprint is at the bottom of the last two leaves. As stated in the notice to the reader, with this publication Meyer intended to show to the general public how he so brilliantly completed the first task assigned to him by Clement X upon his arrival in Rome.

Born in Amsterdam, Cornelius Meyer left his country in 1674 for Venice, then a popular destination for Dutch engineers seeking employment. He moved to Rome one year later. Pope Clement X put Meyer in charge of a major project aimed at protecting the Via Flaminia against the flooding of the Tiber. Meyer, whose plans were less expensive than those proposed by the project's former head engineer, Carlo Fontana, constructed a passonata, i.e., a row of piles, in the Tiber, which deflected the river's current away from the Via Flaminia.

II. First edition of Meyer's important work on the restoration of the Tiber River for navigation, L'arte di restituire a Roma la tralasciata navigatione del suo Tevere, which is considered his masterpiece, and is presented here in its second issue (the first issue is dated 1683 on the title-page).

After this first successful work on the Tiber, Clement X and his successor Innocent XI hired Meyer to improve navigation on the river with the purpose of increasing commerce. Meyer came up with revolutionary solutions to expedite travel along the river and in 1683, with the help of artist Gaspar van Wittel, he published his projects in L'arte di restituire a Roma la tralasciata navigatione del suo Tevere. The book, which is divided into three parts, was both a record of Meyer's engineering skills as well as a form of self-promotion for seeking further commissions. It includes a beautiful series of etchings by Meyer himself as well as by Giovanni Battista Falda, Gaspar van Wittel, Jacques Blondeau, Barend de Bailliu, Balthasar Denner, Gomar Wouters, Johannes Collin, and Ioannes Baptista Honoratus Polustinus. It was with his designs in L'arte di restituire that Meyer consolidated his reputation among the artistic and scientific elite of Rome.

Michel & Michel V, p. 161; Cicognara 3791-3792; Olschki 17589; Poggendorff II, 134; Rossetti 7022-7023c; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 219.

A fine association copy, gifted by the author to the Italian historian Francesco Saverio Quadrio

Vallisneri, Antonio (1661-1730)

Opere diverse... cioe: I. Istoria del Camaleonte Affricano, e di varj Animali d’Italia. II. Lezione Accademica intorno all’Origine delle Fontane. III. Raccolta di varj Trattati accresciuti con Annotazioni, e con Giunte. Giovanni Gabriele Hertz, 1715.

Three parts in one volume, 4° (231x156mm). [12, including frontispiece], 200; [8], 87, [1]; [4], 261, [3] pages; complete with the last blank leaf. Engraved author's portrait as a frontispiece. Thirty engraved folding plates. Contemporary vellum, ink title on the spine. Marbled edges. A very good copy, pale waterstains to the lower outer margin, small wormholes to the gutter of a few leaves, without any loss.

Provenance: Antonio Vallisneri, given as a gift by him to the Italian scholar and historian Francesco Saverio Quadrio (1695-1756; see Vallisneri's dedication on the recto of the first leaf, 'All'Illmo P.R.D. Francesco Xauerio Quadrio della Comp.a di Gesù L'Authore in segno de riuerentiss.ma Stima, e di eterne obbligazioni').

First edition of this collection of Vallisneri's writings on natural history, offered here in a fine copy gifted by him to the renowned Italian historian Francesco Saverio Quadrio, who is especially well-known for his Della storia e della ragione di ogni poesia, a voluminous history of poetry, theatre, and music.

Antonio Vallisneri was born at Trassilico, in Garfagnana, on 3 May 1661. His education initially followed the traditional path of the Jesuit schools – a path reserved for the sons of the 'best' families of the day. In 1682, he started attending Bologna University, where he became one of Malpighi's students. In 1685, he was awarded a degree from the College of Reggio (Emilia), after which he extended his practical knowledge and experience in Venice, Padua and Parma. He subsequently returned to his homeland, where he practised his profession and simultaneously initiated an extremely intense period of natural history studies. Vallisneri's works and observations evince an original interpretation of the themes and perspectives of the Galileian medical tradition followed by Malpighi and Redi and were positioned along the most advanced front of the debates between natural history and life science that were then under way in Europe. Vallisneri was inclined to set his scientific hypotheses within a general theoretical framework although maintained a Baconian respect for empirical data, and he committed himself to overcoming the limits of Cartesian dualism and mechanism, first with reference to Malebranchian thought and then to that of Leibniz. His teachings were based on his meticulous observations of natural science, particularly in the fields of entomology and comparative anatomy; he was convinced that scientific knowledge is best acquired through experience and reasoning, and this principle was followed in his anatomical dissections and carefully drawn descriptions of insects.

Vallisneri's research into reproduction demonstrated the non-existence of spontaneous generation and anticipated evolutionist theory.

In the collection presented here the Lezione Accademica intorno all'Origine delle Fontane is especially noteworthy. The lucidity of Vallisneri's experimental approach makes it a perfect example of the Galileian method.

Garrison-Morton, 302; Pritzel 9675; M. Sabia, Le opere di Antonio Vallisneri medico e naturalista reggiano (1661-1730). Bibliografia ragionata, Rimini 1996, pp. 106-120; Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 224.

The true porchetta

Nardi, Luigi (1777-1837)

Porcus troianus o sia la porchetta. Cicalata ne le nozze di messer Carlo Ridolfi veronese con madonna Rosa Spina riminese. Nobili Press, 1821.

8° (209x144 mm). [2], XVI, 134, [2 blanks] pages. Contemporary wrappers, small losses to the spine. A fine, uncut copy.

The second, augmented edition of this entertaining ludic poem, or cicalata. A notice is printed before the title-page referring to the first edition printed in Rimini in 1813. The name of the author is given only under the form of an anagram, 'Giri di Luna', in the dedication on p. III.

This work, by the canon from Savignano Luigi Nardi, though written as a cicalata for the marriage of Carlo Ridolfi from Verona to Madonna Rosa Spina from Rimini, represents a real treatise on the history and art of making porchetta (roast pork). According to Nardi, the only true porchetta is that traditionally made in Romagna, the author's region, a version which has nothing to do with that produced in Naples or Bologna.

Nardi then explains that in Ancient Roman cuisine, 'porcus troianus' referred to pork stuffed with various meats, which, when cut open at the table – often in a spectacular manner – revealed its precious contents, as in the famous Homeric episode of the Trojan horse.

B.IN.G., 1338; Westbury 158; L. Bartolotti, “La porchetta, sapori di storia e di tradizione”, Porcus troianus: la storia della porchetta in un trattato dell'Ottocento, Rimini 2006 (facsimile reprint of the present edition); Philobiblon, One Thousand Years of Bibliophily, no. 264.