Item #11279 Vitae Duodecim Vicecomitum Mediolani Principum. Ex Bibliotheca Regia. Paolo. Bp. of Nocera Giovio.
Vitae Duodecim Vicecomitum Mediolani Principum. Ex Bibliotheca Regia.
Vitae Duodecim Vicecomitum Mediolani Principum. Ex Bibliotheca Regia.
Vitae Duodecim Vicecomitum Mediolani Principum. Ex Bibliotheca Regia.
Vitae Duodecim Vicecomitum Mediolani Principum. Ex Bibliotheca Regia.
FROM PAINTING TO MINIATURE TO WOODCUT — FROM LATIN TO FRENCH

Vitae Duodecim Vicecomitum Mediolani Principum. Ex Bibliotheca Regia.

Paris, Robert I Estienne 1549.

4to (226 x 166 mm.). 199p. Roman and italic type (Greek on the title), fine woodcut initials, TEN NEARLY FULL-PAGE WOODCUT BUST PORTRAITS (some signed with the Lorraine cross), a woodcut title device of the Royal Printer for Greek (Renouard 471; Schreiber B2).

Contemporary stiff vellum wrappers, old manuscript spine titles, evidence of four ties.

With: Estienne, Charles.
            Abbregé de l’histoire Des Vicontes Et Dvcz de Milan, le droict desquels appartient a la couronne de France.  Paris, Charles Estienne 1552. 4to. [vi], [86]p. Type, design and woodblocks as above (I), a different woodcut Estienne title device (Renouard 296 ; Schreiber ?8).

            Ad I: First Edition, one of only five illustrated books produced by Robert Estienne. Giovio composed the Lives to flatter the claims to Milan of Henri II, then dauphin and soon-to-be king of France. Attributed to Geoffroy Tory, these splendid portraits follow illustrations in Giovio’s illuminated royal dedication manuscript (now BnF Ms. lat. 5887), which in turn relied on the sources indicated beneath the blocks.
            Ad II: When Robert left for Geneva in 1551, his brother Charles took charge of the business, had the royal restrictions on Robert’s property lifted and secured the title of Royal Printer previously held by Robert. Charles abridged and translated the Latin text to broaden his market and maximize his typographic inventory.
            Beautiful, the books’ elegant fonts, careful layout and gracious ornament complement the fine woodcuts. Neither edition includes a printing privilege, likely tacit, given the source of the work and the relationship between the crown and the printers. In good condition (a couple of dozen lower margins lightly stained), early signature on the first title-page of W. Tusanus.
¶Renouard, Annales de l’imprimerie des Estienne 75,20 (I) & 104,12 (II); Schreiber, The Estiennes 104 (I) & 131 (II); Armstrong, Robert Estienne Royal Printer 145-6 (I-II); Brun, Le Livre illustré en France au XVIe siècle 228 (I-II); Bernard, Geofroy Tory 234-5 & reprod. (I-II); Mortimer, French 248 (I); Davies, Early French Books in the Library of C. Fairfax Murray 195 “woodcuts…most delicately engraved” (I); Cioranesco 9586 (II).

Item #11279

Price: $4,500.00

See all items by