Risvegliamento a’ prencipi christiani contro il turco.

Rome, Manelfo Manelfi, 1646.

8vo, pp. [viii], 197, [3]; a few very minor repairs or minute losses to the margins, far from text, some sections lightly browned, a little soiling here and there, but a very good copy, recased in old stiff vellum.


US $2061€1757

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Risvegliamento a’ prencipi christiani contro il turco.

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Only edition, exceptionally rare, of a powerful call for unity and action against the Turk threat issued to all princes of the West, and dedicated in particular to the Austrian lineage, which the author sees as the natural leader of a Christian league. A free-ranging blend of logical argumentation, high-emotive rhetoric and astrological predictions, this tract remains unattributed in library catalogues. It appears, however, to have been the work of Vincenzo Comneno (or Vićenc Komnen, 1590–1667) a polymath, musician and madrigal composer from the Republic of Ragusa. He propounded the false claim to be a descendant of the Byzantine Komnenos dynasty. Lorenzo Miniatti, abbot of Naples, states that Comneno was born in Naples in 1590; what is certain is that he taught philosophy there. A Dominican, he served as chaplain to the Invincible Armada, and travelled to Japan as a missionary.

After changing his family name from Piranese to Comneno, Vincenzo asked Lorenzo Miniatti to print Le glorie cadute dell’antichissima, ed augustissima famiglia Comnena, 1663, a hugely imaginative, largely fictional account of the late fortunes of the ancient Byzantine imperial Komnenos dynasty confected by Comneno himself. It is in this book (p. 179) that we find the Risvegliamento listed as one of Vincenzo’s own works.

IT\ICCU\BVEE\046225. Three copies located world-wide, with a single copy outside Italy (National Library of Israel); no auction record on RBH, or other copies on the market.

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