The Unsurpassably Fresh and Clean Fürstenberg Copy

OPUS RESTITUTIONUM, USURARUM, EXCOMMUNICATIONUM. [bound with] ANTONINUS FLORENTINUS. DE CENSURIS. DE SPONSALIBUS ET MATRIMONIO.

(Venice: Johannes de Colonia and Johannes Manthen, 1477, 1480). 230 x 170 mm. (9 x 6 3/4"). [151] leaves; [136] leaves (lacking the initial blank in the first work but including the terminal blank of the first work and the initial blank of the second). Double column, 40 lines to the page (41 lines in second work), gothic type.

18th century panelled calf, raised bands flanked by gilt rules, one panel with gilt titling. Capital spaces with guide-letters. Front pastedown with bookplates of Louis-Cosmé-Damian Rolandin of Marseilles and of the famous bibliophile Hans Fürstenberg; the name(?) "Bleiard" written at the end of the colophon of the first work; a handful of brief marginal notes in an early hand (a number of manuscript additions in the same hand to an index). Goff P-758; BMC V, 227; ISTC ip00758000. Goff A-777; BMC V, 236; ISTC ia00777000. Leather somewhat scuffed and dried, corners and top of spine somewhat worn, but the binding absolutely tight and with no significant wear to joints. Five leaves stained (probably by accident with wax), final leaf with small burn to fore edge, isolated quite light foxing elsewhere, inoffensive minor worming in first few and last few leaves; in all other ways, AN EXTRAORDINARILY FINE COPY INTERNALLY, EXCEPTIONALLY BRIGHT, SMOOTH, AND FRESH with generous margins, the first work as close to pristine as one could hope for in a 15th century book.

Beautifully fresh and clean internally, and with excellent provenance, this is a fine Venetian printing of two theological treatises. The first of the two items in this volume is the chief work of Platea, also called Piazza (1424-60), a Franciscan born in Bologna. It is a treatise on moral theology dealing with excommunication, usury, and restitution. These last two subjects are intimately related because someone guilty of usury was bound to the restitution of the usurious interest before he could be forgiven (the guilt was even passed on to his heirs if they inherited the money of the deceased). The second incunable here comprises those sections from the "Summa" of Antoninus dealing with ecclesiastical censure (including excommunication) as well as betrothal and marriage (clandestine marriage was cause for ecclesiastical censure). The texts of both of these works appear here as page-for-page reprints of the 1474 editions issued by the same printer, Johannes de Colonia, who married the widow of prominent Venetian printer Johannes de Spira, and worked in partnership with Wendelin de Spira until 1473. His partnership with fellow German emigré Manthen was a continuation of that business and utilized many of the de Spira fonts. It was a productive partnership, printing more than 85 editions from 1474 to 1480. Banker Hans (also Jean) Fürstenberg (1890-1982), a bibliophile of refined discrimination, assembled one of the great collections of the 20th century, and his books were noted for their outstanding condition. In 1974 the library was sold en bloc to Dr. Otto Schäfer, whose marvelous library had already become distinguished, especially for its collection of fine and historic bindings.
(CEH1911)

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PJP Catalog: 75.101

OPUS RESTITUTIONUM, USURARUM, EXCOMMUNICATIONUM. [bound with] ANTONINUS FLORENTINUS. DE CENSURIS. DE SPONSALIBUS ET MATRIMONIO. FRANCISCUS DE PLATEA.
OPUS RESTITUTIONUM, USURARUM, EXCOMMUNICATIONUM. [bound with] ANTONINUS FLORENTINUS. DE CENSURIS. DE SPONSALIBUS ET MATRIMONIO.

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