(Venezia: Antonio Fortunato Stella, 1794). 200 x 130 mm. (7 7/8 x 5 1/4"). xxiv, 172 pp.,  leaf. FIRST EDITION.
Original tan printed paper wrappers, with border of swirling ribbons, each cover with slightly different central bearded figure dressed in robes, standing over an open book, with a crescent moon in the sky. Covers a little soiled and with a few small, faint stains, head and tail of spine with VERY SLIGHT loss, a few isolated rust spots internally, two small marginal stains affecting a few leaves each, but A REMARKABLY WELL-PRESERVED EXAMPLE OF AN EXTREMELY FRAGILE VOLUME.
This rare book on the Islamic faith is of considerable interest for its content as well as its excellent state of preservation. A particular source of pleasure is the complete lack of sophistication to the insubstantial binding, allowing us to appreciate the work in its original, unaltered state. The images on the printed wrappers here are especially intriguing, depicting two members of the Islamic faith as seen through a European lens. The book begins with an overview of important concepts of the faith, as well as definitions of words associated with Islam ("Alcoran," "Imam," "Khalifa," etc.). It is then divided into three sections, the first dealing with dogma, the second with rituals and customs (including a chapter on astronomical tables), and the third with the "cult" of Islam--its relics, edifices, sacrificial practices, and the like. Although we could discover very little about the author, the tone of the work appears to be without malice and aims to present an accurate description of the religion. It is also extremely rare, both on the market and institutionally, with only one copy located at auction, and four copies at libraries in the United States. (ST15218)
Add to Cart Price: $1,250.00
PJP Catalog: 75.151