(Strassburg: [Printer of the Jordanus von Quedlinburg (i.e., Georg Husner)], 3 October, 1487). 305 x 216 mm. (12 x 8 1/2").  leaves (the last leaf blank). Double columns, 92 lines of text in gothic type.
Once fine and still pleasing contemporary blind-stamped Venetian mahogany morocco over wooden boards, covers with foliate frame enclosing large knotwork cross, remnants of four brass clasps (two on the fore edge, one each at head and tail), former (ninth or 10th century?) vellum manuscript pastedowns removed, leaving vestiges of writing in a Carolingian hand (spine repaired and worming and abrasions on the covers recently and expertly filled in, with original binding decoration replicated by Courtland Benson). WITH A LOVELY ILLUMINATED OPENING INITIAL in colors on a burnished gold ground. Ownership inscription of "D. Barnabe à Parma" dated 1644 on title page, with three other inscriptions (relating to the book's purchase?) below it. Goff T-532; BMC I, 136. The carefully restored binding with some general moderate wear, but now solid and with much of its original appeal recovered. First three leaves with small, narrow stain to fore edge, a7 with half a dozen small ink stains to text, intermittent minor foxing and browning (never noticeable), last five gatherings with tiny round wormhole in text, final two quires with small, faint dampstain at head and tail of inner margin, but none of these defects significant, and an excellent copy internally, the leaves clean and fresh, the margins ample, and the illumination with rich colors and sparkling, intact gold.
This is a very attractive folio edition of a book on the Christian significance of the Psalms, one of the major writings of Johannes Turrecremata (Juan de Torquemada, 1388-1468), a Spanish Dominican monk who attended several church councils, who became a cardinal in 1439, and who was known for his charity. Our printer is a figure of perplexing historical untidiness. Georg Husner is known to have been a goldsmith who married a citizen's daughter in Strassburg in 1470. We know further that he printed and signed his books in their colophons from 1473-79 and then again intermittently from 1493 on. But for reasons that have never been fully understood, books--like the present item--that are easily recognized as coming from his workshop between 1479 and 1493 do not contain his (or any other) name in their colophons. Within this period (and extending to 1499), there is an important grouping of Husner books, very similar typographically, the first one of which was the sermons of Jordanus of Quedlinburg, printed in 1483. As is the case with the present volume, Proctor has designated these editions as having been produced by the "Printer of the 1483 Jordanus de Quedlinburg (Georg Husner)." This second Husner edition is quite rare: Goff locates only one copy (at the Library of Congress), ABPC lists none at auction since 1975. This copy is not only well preserved in a period binding, but is also embellished with a lovely illuminated initial. (ST12111)
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PJP Catalog: NY16BF.093