Paris: 1642. Folio: Three blanks, the third with what appears to be a Strasburg lily watermark, Engraved title by Claude Mellan, verso blank. Text, not divided into verses but with verse numbers in the text, 422pp; Variae Lectiones, pp 423-453, 1p. bearing ornament [1 f. blank]. Twenty engraved headpieces and initials, twelve vignettes including final ornament. Signatures in fours [A - Iii3]. Printed on large laid handmade paper giving a very wide margin; Full leather tan calf binding. A separate watermark appears to consist of a cardinal's hat and an anchor.
Sympathetically re-backed; Lacks half title; Title has been cleaned but is still stained; First page (A) professionally repaired with some loss of text; age toned through out with some soiling. Item #1515
A reprint of the first of the Elzevir editions (1624), this magnificent folio is sometimes known as the 'Mazarin edition', since it appeared under the auspices of Cardinal Mazarin. The engraved title page represents an angel writing on an obelisk, which nests on a square base; the title itself is inscribed on a scroll carried by three cherubs. This design was afterwards adapted by the Oxford University printers for the title page in some of the New Testaments published by them. The book also contains engraved head pieces, vignettes and initials. (Darlow and Moule).
Claude Mellan (1598-1688) was a French draughtsman, engraver and painter. After 1637 he developed a technique of using parallel lines of various widths and closeness to create shade. This technique is apparent in the title page here and in the headpieces, vignettes and initials throughout.
This item came to us in very poor condition with the boards detached, a stained title page and a poorly repaired first page. As per the description, we have had the book professionally re-backed and the first five pages have been washed and repaired by an expert conservator. The treatment report can be made available on request. More photos are also available on request. N.B. This is a heavy item and may require additional postage.