Urbis Romae topographia. 

Rome, Valerio & Luigi Dorico, September 1544. 

Folio, pp. [12 (ff. 1–6)], 122, [2, colophon, blank]; [a]6, A–B4, C–L6; large woodcut Pegasus device to colophon, 22 large woodcut illustrations, of which several full-page, leaves B2–3 folding at edges for double-page woodcut plan of Rome, woodcut initials throughout; short tear to E3, title and colophon subtly reinforced with tissue verso, occasional skilful repairs (including to folds of B2–3), a few larger woodcuts slightly trimmed; contemporary blind roll-tooled sheep, neatly relaid over modern calf with recent calf ties to fore-edge; scuffing and worming to old sheep; title inscribed ‘Coll Soc. Jesu Hala 1691. Decemb.’, subsequently in the library of the Seminarium Major at Jauring, with printed donation label from Alexander Balogh and ink stamp to title.


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First illustrated edition (third overall), showing the archaeology and antiquities of Rome as known in the sixteenth century.  First published in octavo by Antonio Blado in 1534 and reprinted at Lyons by Sébastien Gryphe later the same year, Marliani’s topography of Rome remained the foremost work on the subject over the following two centuries.  This considerably revised edition, the first to be printed in folio, was accompanied for the first time by a series of large woodcuts, providing a comprehensive visual record of ancient structures and sculptures in Rome.  Particularly noteworthy are the double-page map of Rome, signed by the calligrapher Giovanni Battista Palatino, and the full-page woodcut of Laocoön and His Sons, whose excavation Marliani had witnessed in 1506. 

The present copy is in the first issue as noted by Mortimer.  In the second and third issues the bifolium L2.5 is reset, with reference to Marliani’s Consulum, dictatorum, censorumque Romanorum series, suggesting they were issued after the latter work’s publication in January 1549.  Later editions, though numerous, for the most part returned to the unillustrated octavo format of 1534. 

EDIT16 34273; Mortimer 284; USTC 841008. 

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