4to, pp. [xx], 1308, [2, blank]; title printed in red an black within typographical border, woodcut initials and typographical headpieces throughout; a few quires uniformly browned, one small marginal paper flaw, but a very good copy in contemporary stiff vellum, ink lettering on spine; cover a little soiled.
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Postill, Dat is, Uthlegginge der Evangelien so up de Sondage und Göttlike feste in der gemene Gades.
Very rare first and only edition of this Reformed Postilla in Low German, translated by Tobias Pezel, the preacher and theologian son of another famous Reformed theologian and promoter of the Confession in Nassau and Bremen, Christoph Pezel.
In the decades between 1550 and 1620, in what has been described as the ‘primacy of postils’ (Frymire), the genre flourished, under the evangelic as well as ‘normative’ impulse of Reformed ministers-officers. Sermons for all feasts of the liturgical year provided the clergy with a model for preaching, as it had been traditional since the homiliaria of the early Christian centuries. With Luther’s and Melanchthon’s Postils, though, the Reformed collections of sermons also became key instruments in codifying a consistent understanding of points of theology, the terms of which were particularly delicate in territories exposed to Catholic and Calvinist influence. Luther’s own Postilla had also enjoyed a translation into Low German.
Not in VD 17. On Pezel, see ADB XXV, 577. On German editions of the Postilla from Luther to 1620, see John M. Frymire, The Primacy of the Postils: Catholics, Protestants, and the dissemination of ideas in Early Modern Germany (2009).
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INTITIAL from a manuscript Gradual or Antiphonal; initial 'U' painted in rose red with elaborate white tracery, the centre filled with coloured foliage and blue grapes, all against a richly burnished gold ground, square notation on red 4-line staves and one partial line of text written in brown ink in a gothic hand on the verso, cut to shape, one corner chipped, in fine condition. 90 x 90 mm
The stylized decoration and use of bright colours, including the deep blue grape motif, recalls the art of Ferrara at the end of the third quarter of the 15th century. Compare, for example, an initial in a Bible painted for the Este family by Taddeo Crivelli (active from 1451, died 1479) which is now in Modena (Este Library, Ms. V. G. 12; see M. Salmi, Italian Miniatures, 1954, pl. LIII). Compare also the similar initial in a slightly later manuscript (Stralsund, Stadtarchiv, Ms. IV. 290; see E. Rothe, Buchmalerei aus Zwolf Jahrhunderten, 1965, p. 270, pl. 129).
THE SPIRIT OF L’ENCYCLOPÉDIE [DIDEROT, Denis and others].
Select Essays from the Encyclopedy, being the most curious, entertaining, and instructive Parts of that very extensive Work, written by Mallet, Diderot, D’Alembert, and Others, the most celebrated Writers of the Age. London: Printed for Samuel Leacroft … 1772.
First and only edition in English of selected articles from L’Esprit de l’Encyclopédie (1768), in effect the first extant portion of Diderot’s famous Encyclopédie to appear in English.