8vo, ff. 14, [1 (blank except for type ornament to recto)], without the final blank; engraved vignette to title, head-piece; very faint damp stain to upper margins, small loss to lower blank inner corner of f. 14 and loss to lower portion of final leaf (neither touching text) both neatly repaired; a very good copy in contemporary limp vellum, remains of ties to lower cover; spine reinforced with paper, some cockling and a few marks.
US $7202 €6092
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Advis de la bien heureuse mort de cinq religieux de la Compagnie de Iesus, & d’aucuns autres seculiers, qui ont esté tuez pour la foy, par les payens, aux Indes Orientales, l’an 1583. Tiré d’une lettre du P. Alexandre Valignan ... enuoyée de la ville de Goa, au Reuerand Pere General de ladicte Compagnie de Iesus, le vingthuictiesme de Decembre de la mesme année.
Very rare first edition in French of the letter sent by the Italian Jesuit missionary Alessandro Valignano (1539-1606) in late December 1583 to Claudio Acquaviva, the Society’s Superior General, reporting on the deaths of five Jesuit missionaries in the village of Cuncolim in the district of Salcete in Goa, west India, including Rodolfo Acquaviva, Claudio’s nephew and superior of the Salcete mission. The work was published in Latin and Italian in the same year.
Accompanied by Alphonsus Pacheco, Peter Berno, Anthony Francis, and Francis Aranha, Acquaviva travelled to Cuncolim to erect a cross and select ground for building a church. The local population was understandably hostile to the Jesuits after earlier punitive expeditions to destroy their shrines and temples, in which Pacheco and Berno had played an active part, and on 15 July 1583 Acquaviva’s party was set upon by the Hindu villagers and killed with scimitars, spears, arrows, and lances, their bodies being cast into a well. The Portuguese layman Gonçalo Rodrigues and fourteen native Christians were also killed.
For over two centuries Goa was the major training centre for Jesuits received and educated in the Far East and the principal reception centre for recruits from Europe. The martyrdoms reported in the Advis did nothing to stem the number of European Jesuits travelling to India, which increased decade by decade until the late 1620s.
BM STC French p. 241; Sommervogel VIII, 404; Streit Bibliotheca Missionum IV, 1031; USTC 12214. Only the British Library and New York Public Library copies recorded in the UK and US. We have traced no copies in auction records.
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TAVERNIER, Jean Baptiste.
Recüeil de plusieurs relations et traitez singuliers et curieux . . . qui n’ont point esté mis dans ses six premiers voyages. Divisé en cinq paties [sic]. I. Une relation du Japon, et de la cause de la persecution des Chrestiens dans ses isles: avec la carte du païs. II. Relation de ce qui s’est passé dans la negociation des deputez qui ont esté en Perse et aux Indes, tant de la part du roy, que de la Compagnie Françoise, pour l’establissement du commerce. III. Observations sur le commerce des Indes Orientales, et sur les frauds qui s’y peuvent commetre. IV. Relation nouvelle et singuliere du royaume de Tunquin: avec plusieurs figures et la carte du païs. V. Histoire de la conduite des Hollandois en Asie.
First edition, separately published, of the third part of Tavernier’s celebrated collection of voyages. The first two parts, Les six voyages, had appeared in 1676 and were also reissued in 1679.
‘ATMOSPHERIC AND FAITHFUL’ MENDES PINTO, Fernão (Bernard FIGUIER, translator).
Les voyages advantureux de Fernand Mendez Pinto. Fidelement traduicts de portugais en françois par le Sieur Bernard Figuier gentil-homme portugais. Et dediez à Monseigneur le Cardinal de Richelieu.
First edition in French of Mendes Pinto’s celebrated travel account; rare. The original Portuguese edition was published in 1614, although the first draft of the book had been completed by 1569. The present ‘atmospheric and faithful French translation’ (Lach, Asia in the Making of Europe, III, p. 401) is by Bernard Figuier (probably Bernardo Figueiro) and was reprinted in 1645 and 1663. Figuier seems to have made use of both Portuguese and Spanish versions for his translation.