FROM ONE POET TO ANOTHER

Rime dell’Arnigio per la ill[ustre] signora Claudia Martinenga. 

Brescia, Giovanni Battista Bozzola, 1566. 

4to, ff. [38]; woodcut grotesque cartouche to title, historiated woodcut initials; inconsequential small wormhole to inner margin of the final three leaves, title and a few leaves slightly spotted, quire F a little browned, neatly repaired closed tear to last leaf; a very good copy in later carta rustica; contemporary ink inscription ‘Dono dell’ autore fatto a me Antonio Beffa de’ Negrini’ to title (see below), with his transcription of a sonnet by Arnigio on the final blank.

£1750

Approximately:
US $2197€2048

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Rime dell’Arnigio per la ill[ustre] signora Claudia Martinenga. 

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First edition of Bartolomeo Arnigio’s collection of poems addressed to Claudia Martinengo, wife to Ludovico Martinengo della Pallata, an important association copy presented by the author to fellow poet Antonio Beffa Negrini. 

The poems, composed in the tradition of Petrarch’s lyric verse, celebrate the divine essence of womanly beauties with much recourse to the Petrarchan imagery revolving around eyes and hands, light, arrows and seawaves.  Bartolomeo Arnigio (d. 1577) was of humble origins, born in Brescia to a farrier; his merits and Martinengo’s patronage earned him the chance to study medicine in Padua, and to return to his native city a publicly recognized intellectual, and a lecturer in philosophy.  He went on to publish an important emblem book, Rime de gli Academici Occulti con le loro imprese et discorsi (Brescia, Vincenzo di Sabbio, 1568). 

Provenance: This copy was given by the author to his friend Antonio Beffa Negrini (1532–1602), the poet, scholar, and lawyer in Mantua, who published his own book of verse in the same year.  The sonnet by Arnigio recorded by Beffa Negrini at the end of the volume is a charming verse evocation of the silent night of Christmas. 

OCLC finds two copies in the US (California, Yale) and one in the UK (V&A).  EDIT16 3074. 

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