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ANTIQUARIAN BOOK

Andreae Gritti Principis Venetiarum Vita.

BARBARIGO (Niccolò).

BARBARIGO (Niccolò).

Andreae Gritti Principis Venetiarum Vita Nicolao Barbadico Auctore Alexandro Albritio Procuratoris Divi Marci Dignitatem Ineunte Primum Edita.

Engraved frontispiece, title vignette, head and tailpiece.

4to. [301 x 215 x 10 mm]. [3]ff, 15, [1], lv pp. Bound in the original Venetian flexible boards covered with pink glazed paper, the sides blocked or stencilled in white with a rococo frame incorporating two female portrait medallions, enclosing a crowned rococo cartouche, with the Albrizzi arms on the front and interlocked initials of Venice on the rear. The spine decorated to a chain pattern, plain endleaves and edges. (Slight wear to the spine and a little very minor discolouration). Contained in a tan cloth drop-over box, lined with felt, the spine lettered on a black goatskin label.
Venetiis [i.e. Venice]: typis Caroli Palesii, 1792.

Morazzoni, Il Libro illustrato Veneziano del Settecento, 264.

A delightful Venetian decorated wrapper with a particularly exuberant design and in fine condition. A. R. A. Hobson, French and Italian Collectors and their Bindings, p.168, remarked that "the charming wrappers printed in colours from wood-blocks [were] the special contribution of Venice to Italian eighteenth century binding". Their introduction was due to the brothers Giovan Antonio and Giovan Battista Remondini of Bassano, who revived an art that had flourished in Venice two centuries earlier. Production resumed about 1732 and in 1755 the Remondinis were granted a twenty year monopoly by the Venetian Government. By 1767 the firm was working at full capacity, with a great export trade (on which they were allowed exemption from Venetian customs dues) to Russia, Poland, Scandanavia, Provence, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, and South America. They offered a choice of flowered, gilt, coloured, or marbled papers, and a speciality was the wrappers decorated with the arms of the individuals honoured in the livres d'occasion printed to celebrate agreeable events. The white decoration on this example looks as if it may have been applied with a stencil rather than a wood block.

This in one of six publications which commemorated the appointment of Alessandro Albrizzi to the office of Procuratore di San Marco. This is the first edition of a life of the great Doge Andrea Gritti (1454-1538) by Niccolò Barbarigo (1534-1579), whose biography, by Jacopo Morelli, forms the preliminaries. The illustrations all display portrait medals of Gritti.

Stock no. ebc2120

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Price: £1250

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