Paris, [Le Petit Laurens for himself and Jean Petit 1500].
Folio (263 x 191 mm.). [xi], , [2 blank]p. Gothic type.
A FIGURED FOUR-BLOCK FRAME ENCLOSES THE BIPARTITE WOODCUT. Above, an old couple, Understanding and Memory, flank a Gothic pinnacle, while below, the author finishes the text in his study; Lombardic initials, xylographic title with a large grotesque initial L.
Contemporary blind-ruled calf (restored, new endleaves), gilt fleurons in the corners and center.
“THE ORIGINAL OF AN IMPORTANT MONUMENT OF EARLY ENGLISH PROSE” (Goldschmidt). Andrew Chertsey translated it into English, and Wynkyn de Worde issued it twice.
Composed in the 1460s to be read silently alone or aloud with family and friends, these Christian tenets address simple folk. Examples from everyday life leaven the clear and patient prose, which, i.a., WARNS AGAINST READING ROMANCES OF CHIVALRY AND WORLDLY POETS.
Of the ?thirteen incunable printings, only three are held by U.S. libraries (each in a single example). In good condition (washed, upper margin of the first four leaves repaired with a little woodcut and two sorts neatly supplied, one or two minor text repairs with no loss).
16th-century signature of Jafré Albert with his mark (thrice), 17th-century inscription of the Sisteron Capuchins, 18th-century signature of Vaumeilh curate Vincent Reimer and 1850 inscription of the Paris Carmelites.
¶The citations conflict: Bechtel, Catalogue des gothiques français O-61 (transcription error?) ; BMC VIII: 163; Goldschmidt, Catalogue VIII (1926) 74 & pl. VIII (the issue with Petit’s device; £125 to Huntington); ISTC io00083500 (imprecise references); Goff O-84 (Huntington).