DE LINGUAE LATINAE ELEGANTIA LIBRI SEX JAM NOVISSIME DE INTEGRO BONA FIDE EMACULATI. . . . UNA CUM EPITOMIS JODOCI BADII AXENSII.

(Parisiis: Apud Fran. Gryphium, 1539). 240 x 175 mm. (9 1/2 x 6 7/8"). 16 p.l., 2-249 leaves.

FINE CONTEMPORARY CALF, BOTH COVERS WITH TWO PANEL STAMPS, EACH DEPICTING ST. JEROME AND HIS LION STANDING BEFORE THE CRUCIFIED CHRIST, the saint's signature cardinal's hat hanging from a tree branch behind him, raised bands, endpapers lifting to reveal 13th century manuscript fragments (front joint with expert repair). Publisher's woodcut device on title page. Front pastedown with engraved bookplate of the Macclesfield North Library; front flyleaf with contemporary ink inscription identifying the owner of the book as Gerardus Albertus, with a checkerboard grill and a bearded man in a hat sketched below it. Sandys II, 68. Binding not in Fogelmark or Goldschmidt. Leather at corners worn through, otherwise an especially pleasing binding, the covers quite lustrous, and the panel stamps still in sharp relief. Scarcely perceptible dampstain to fore-edge margin of three quires, occasional minor marginal smudges, tiny wormhole to margin of a handful of gatherings at beginning and end, but a remarkably fine copy internally, the leaves especially fresh and clean, and with vast margins.

On the Elegancies of the Latin Language is the noted scholar Laurentius Valla's harsh critique of the "barbarous" Latin of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, offered here in a stamped binding that features another great scholar, Saint Jerome. The work was widely popular: according to Sandys, it was first published in 1471, and went through 59 editions in the next 65 years. The first five books are concerned with issues of grammar and style, while the last is devoted to correcting the mistakes of other grammarians and to a discussion of legal terms that was influential in the study of jurisprudence. The striking and detailed panel stamp shows a life-sized crucifix on the side of a tree-lined road, with Jerome and his lion standing before it, and the rooftops of a city visible over the hills in the distance. The scene is framed by a Latin motto, "Gandavi in edibus fr[atru]m," indicating the binding was done by or for the brothers of Saint Jerome (Hieronymites) in the city of Ghent. Their monastery was associated with the Brethren of the Common Life, the order whose fine schools educated Erasmus, Martin Luther, and other prominent theologians. We have not been able to find this panel stamp in Haebler, Schunke, Fogelmark, Goldschmidt, Bibliotheque Mazarine, or Hobson, nor in the blind-stamped bindings in the databases of the Bavarian State Library, the Bibliothèque Nationale, and the Bibliothèque Saint Geneviève. And the beauty and condition of the stamps are commensurate with their rarity.
(ST12880)

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PJP Catalog: CA19BF.055

DE LINGUAE LATINAE ELEGANTIA LIBRI SEX JAM NOVISSIME DE INTEGRO BONA FIDE EMACULATI. . . . UNA CUM EPITOMIS JODOCI BADII AXENSII. LORENZO VALLA.
DE LINGUAE LATINAE ELEGANTIA LIBRI SEX JAM NOVISSIME DE INTEGRO BONA FIDE EMACULATI. . . . UNA CUM EPITOMIS JODOCI BADII AXENSII.
DE LINGUAE LATINAE ELEGANTIA LIBRI SEX JAM NOVISSIME DE INTEGRO BONA FIDE EMACULATI. . . . UNA CUM EPITOMIS JODOCI BADII AXENSII.
DE LINGUAE LATINAE ELEGANTIA LIBRI SEX JAM NOVISSIME DE INTEGRO BONA FIDE EMACULATI. . . . UNA CUM EPITOMIS JODOCI BADII AXENSII.
DE LINGUAE LATINAE ELEGANTIA LIBRI SEX JAM NOVISSIME DE INTEGRO BONA FIDE EMACULATI. . . . UNA CUM EPITOMIS JODOCI BADII AXENSII.