THE FIRST OFFICIAL SPANISH ORTHOGRAPHY

Prontuario de ortografía de la lengua castellana dispuesto de Real Órden para el uso de las escuelas públicas por la Real Academía Española con arreglo al sistema adoptado en la novena edición de su Diccionario.

Madrid, Imprenta Nacional, 1844.

Small 8vo, pp. [4], iv, 59, [1], with an engraved plate showing different forms of the letters of the alphabet; some light browning and occasional spotting, but still a very good copy, in contemporary red morocco gilt, sides with large central lozenge stamped in blind, gilt borders, upper board with gilt initials ‘L.F’, gilt spine, gilt edges, watered silk endpapers.

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Rare first edition of the first official orthography for Spanish. Earlier attempts at standardising Spanish orthography had met with failure. Even the Real Academia Española (founded 1713) for years could only advise on spelling. It was not until the publication of the present work, now with full royal sanction, that Spanish was finally taught systematically across the kingdom.

Although the print-run may have been high, the survival rate is not (as one might expect for a school book). REBIUN locates copies at the Biblioteca Nacional and Malaga only; no further copies in OCLC.

Palau 1419 (listing a further 15 editions before the end of the nineteenth century).

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