8vo, ff. [viii], 207, ; woodcut device to title, initials; lightly toned, paper flaw to centre of f. 181 touching some words, small losses to blank lower margins of last 6 leaves, a few small holes in blank margins of final leaf, otherwise very good; contemporary limp vellum, yapp edges, ink lettered spine; short tear to spine, upper part of yapp edge to rear cover slightly burnt, a little worn and marked; name inked to title, a few early neat marginal annotations.
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Primera parte de la vida del Picaro Guzman de Alfarache ...
Rare early edition of the prototype of the picaresque novel, Guzman de Alfarache. The novel prepared the way for the acceptance of Cervantes’ Don Quixote by the literary public of Europe; and, like Don Quixote, it quickly inspired a sequel. The original part I first appeared in 1599; Lujan de Sayavedra’s fraudulent sequel in 1602; and Aleman’s own retaliatory sequel in 1604.
Aleman is said to have gone through adventures similar to those described in his novel. While in jail for embezzlement, allegedly committed when an accountant of the Royal treasury, he is said to have met Cervantes who had been imprisoned for debt. In spite of the tremendous popularity of his book he was always a poor man. He emigrated to Mexico where he published a Spanish orthography in 1609.
Palau 6691. COPAC locates only the Cambridge copy; Worldcat records only two copies in the US (New York Public Library, University of Illinois).
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First edition. The classical scholar, traveller, and author Chandler (bap. 1737, d. 1810) was educated at Winchester College and Queen’s College, Oxford, and awarded a demyship at Magdalen College in 1757. Following the publication of an annotated collection of fragments by Tyrtaeus, Simonides, Theognis, Alcaeus, Sappho, and other Greek poets in 1759, Chandler published a catalogue of the Arundel marbles in 1763 as Marmora Oxoniensis. ‘In 1764 Chandler was introduced to the Society of Dilettanti by Robert Wood, editor of The Ruins of Palmyra, and was commissioned by the society to undertake a tour of exploration in Asia Minor and Greece in the first independent mission funded by the society. As treasurer he was given command of the expedition, and was accompanied by Nicholas Revett [...] and by the watercolour painter William Edmund Pars. They were instructed to make Smyrna their headquarters and thence “to make excursions to the several remains of antiquity in that neighbourhood”; to make exact plans and measurements; to make “accurate drawings of the bas-reliefs and ornaments”; and to copy all inscriptions, all the while keeping “minute diaries”. Having embarked from Gravesend on 9 June 1764 the party spent about a year in Asia Minor [...]. On 20 August 1765 they left Smyrna for Athens, where Chandler gloomily noted that the Parthenon was in danger of being completely destroyed. He bought two fragments of the Parthenon frieze that had been built into houses in the town and was presented with a trunk that had fallen from one of the metopes and lay neglected in a garden. Although the party visited other parts of the Greek mainland their plans to visit Ithaca, Cephallonia, and Corfu were abandoned, principally because of the group's poor health’ (ODNB).
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First edition in Spanish of Alberti’s Momus [or De principe], translated by Augustín de Almaçan and with an introductory 8 pp. Exposición by the Toledo ascetic writer and scholar Alejo Venegas (1495?–1554?).