Five vols, 8vo; with two engraved title-pages (one for the Histories and one for the Prince) and a set of 12 engraved plates illustrating the Histories, each accompanied by a caption; a very good copy, in contemporary half vellum, boards with pink floral pattern, spines lettered in ink; modern pen ownership inscription to the front free endpaper of the first volume.
US $5350 €4532
Rare first edition in Dutch of Machiavelli’s complete works, preserved in all its five parts. The set includes the Historie van Florence (1703, translation of the Istorie fiorentine, two parts), De Prins (1705, the first appearance of a new translation of the Prince, after that of 1615 made by Adam van Zuylen van Nijevelt; it is followed here by other shorter works by Machiavelli) and De Republicq (1704, translation of the Discorsi, two parts).
The Prince, translated by Daniel Ghys, is prefaced by the commentary of the French translator Abraham Nicolas Amelot de la Houssaie, his dedication to the Grand Duke of Tuscany, Machiavelli’s own letter to Lorenzo de’ Medici, and Ghys’s introduction.
This translation of the Prince marks a significant shift in the attitude towards Machiavelli which occurred at the beginning of the eighteenth century. Instead of excuses or rhetorical devices bent on distancing translators and editors from the stance of the compromising Florentine, which had been the case for the first Dutch translation of 1615, here Ghys begins with an outright defence of Machiavelli, who ‘feared God, loved harmony, order, justice and discipline in the state, [and whose] intention was to rid mankind of idleness and voluptuousness. It was precisely Machiavelli who showed the activities of eminent persons in the “honest affairs of a republic”’ (E. Haitsma Mulier, ‘A controversial republican’, in Machiavelli and Republicanism, Cambridge, Cambridge Univ. Press, 1999, p. 252). The Prince is embraced without embarrassment, and so is the nuanced, refined political science of the Discorsi, with its open republicanism.
Muller, 780 (2 parts of only); De Vries, 185; Scheepers I, 496. OCLC finds no copies in the US and, in the UK, a partial copy at the British Library (parts 1 and 2 only).
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ROSIÈRES, François de.
Six livres des politiques, contentants l’origine et estat des cités, condition des personnes, economie, & police des monarchies & républiques du monde, tant en temps de paix, que de guerre, avec l’institution du monarch, & les moyens de conserver & destruire la chose publique en toutes especes de gouvernement tant droict que defectueux, ensemble des magistrats, & loix, desquelles on y doit user, selon le jugement des anciens & modernes philosophes . . . Plus, de l’origine . . . & utilité de l’art politique.
First edition. A rare treatise on government, society and economy, written during the French Wars of Religion by the archdeacon of Toule. Rosières enjoyed the patronage of Charles, the Guise cardinal of Lorraine, to whom this book is dedicated. In 1580 he published Stemmatum Lotharingiae ac Barri ducum libri septem, which, on fraudulent documentary evidence, attempted to prove that the house of Lorraine (of which the Guise was a branch) was the rightful claimant to the French crown: unsurprisingly the book was suppressed, but, thanks to his Guise connections, Rosières suffered no more that a short term of imprisonment (see NBG).
[An Essay Concerning Humane Understanding]. Extrait d’un Livre Anglois qui n’est pas encore publié, intitulé Essai Philosophique concernant L’Entendement…communiqué par Mr Locke [in: ‘Bibliothèque universelle et historique de l’année 1688’, vol. 8].
A substantial and extremely influential extract, published two years before the appearance of the book, of Locke’s Essay concerning human understanding: a publication of major consequence in the history of philosophy. This issue of the Bibliothèque universelle et historique also contains at least another contribution by Locke: an anonymously-published review of Newton’s Principia Mathematica (pp. 363-375).