Continental

Contact Alex Day, Andrea Mazzocchi or Jonathan Harrison

Our Continental department specialises in incunabula, Greek and Latin classics, early vernacular imprints, and notable texts from the Renaissance, the Reformation and the early modern era, with a specific section devoted to medieval manuscripts, fragments and illuminations.

We regularly issue lists and catalogues, offering a wide variety of literary, historical and philosophical books printed in Italy, France, Spain, Germany, Switzerland, the Low Countries, Eastern Europe and Russia. Woodcuts, early engravings, notable bindings, notable marginalia, rare manuscript or printed survivals, and books with a remarkable provenance are among our keenest interests, and feature regularly in our stock.

 
  1. EUCHERIUS, Johannes (pseud.).

    Gratiarum actio. Wirtembergensibus et Tubingensibus verbi ministris; qui censuris Patriarche Constantinopolitani...

    Christopoli [i.e. Poznań, J. Wolrab], 1585.

    Very rare early imprint from Poznań, one of the oldest and most important cities in Poland, a Catholic stronghold. There Johann Wolrab, Nikolaus’ eldest son, founded the second city printing press in 1579. Gratiarum actio had first appeared in 1584 in two productions printed in Krakow and Poznań,...

    £800

  2. FISHER, John.

    Sacri sacerdotii defensio contra Lutherum.

    Cologne, [Hero Fuchs for] Peter Quentel, 1525.

    RUPERT, of Deutz. De divinis officiis libri XII. [Cologne, Frans Birckmann,] 1526.

    £2750

  3. [FRANCE and ITALY.]

    A collection of manuscript and printed material pertaining to French territorial ambitions in Italy.

    [c. 1537–c. 1630].

    A collection of memoranda concerning French ambitions in the Italian peninsula during the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries.

    £1200

  4. [FROBEN, Johannes].

    Portrait, after Holbein the Younger, showing the scholar-printer half-length, to right, black fur-lined dress,...

    The original of this celebrated portrait is lost, and it only survives in copies. There is one at Hampton Court, for example. See the account in Oliver Miller, Tudor, Stuart and early Georgian Paintings in the Royal Collection, 1963. There are two copies in the Öffentliche Kunstsammlung at Basel (357, 1910).

    £12000

  5. HAEFTEN, Benedictus van.

    Regia via crucis.

    Antwerp, Ex officina Plantiniana Balthasaris Moreti, 1635.

    First edition of an important counter-reformation devotional emblem book, with a title-page designed by Peter Paul Rubens. Haeften (1588-1648) was provost of the Benedictine abbey of Affligem, Belgium, and played an important role in the reform of the Benedictine order. The Regia via crucis was his most...

    £1100

  6. HOOKER, Richard.

    Of the Lawes of Ecclesiastical Politie, eight Bookes [Bound with:] Certayne Divine Tractates … London, Printed...

    … London: Printed by Will. Stansby, and are to be sold by Mat. Lownes … 1617.

    Fourth edition, first issue, of the Preface and Books 1-4 (first published in 1593), third edition of Book 5 (first published in 1597), bound here with the third edition of ‘Certayne Divine Tractates’ (1631), issued with a 1622 general title-page (rather than the usual 1632).

    £650

  7. HORACE.

    Opera omnia.

    Paris, A. Mesnier [printed by Didot fils with the type cut by Henri Didot], 1828.

    A scarce Miniature Book. “One of the typographical wonders and an unsurpassed feat as far as minuteness and beauty of type is concerned” (Spielmann 201).

    £600

  8. ILLUMINATED

    INTITIAL from a manuscript Gradual or Antiphonal; initial 'U' painted in rose red with elaborate white tracery, the...

    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...

    £750

  9. [INDULGENCE]. MILÁ, Luis de, Cardinal.

    Letter of Indulgence (in Catalan), beginning ‘A Honor …’ granted by Luis de Mila,...

    Lérida, Heinrich Botel, c. 1498.

    Printed at Lérida, the second city of Catalonia, about 100 miles inland from Barcelona: an indulgence granted by Luis de Mila, Bishop of Lérida, in favour of the living (as opposed to the dead; see below) to gather funds for the repair of the old Cathedral of Lérida.

    £34000

  10. [ITALIAN.]

    [BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER.] Il Libro delle Preghiere publiche ed Amministrazione de Sacramenti, ed altri Riti e Cerimonie...

    Londra, Appresso Moise Pitt Libraro … 1685.

    First edition of the first translation of the Book of Common Prayer into Italian. The project was begun by Edward Browne while chaplain to Sir John Finch in Constantinople, perhaps incorporating an earlier, unpublished translation by William Bedell (the manuscript being listed in Griffiths’ Bibliography...

    £1250

  11. [JACOBUS DE GRUYTRODE, ascribed author.]

    Lavacrum conscientie [omnium sacerdotum].

    [Colophon:] Cologne, Heinrich Quentell, 1504.

    Rare edition of this popular late medieval treatise widely ascribed to the Carthusian monk Jacobus de Gruytrode (c. 1400–1475). Essentially a handbook for priests, with a significant devotional element, it was first published between 1487 and 1489. According to Theodor Petreius, Bibliotheca Cartusiana...

    £750

  12. [KAFKA, Franz.]

    Almanach des Schocken Verlags auf das Jahr 5695.

    Berlin, Schocken Verlag, 1934/35.

    Pp. 96-103 contain Kafka’s Aufzeichnungen über eine jüdische Wandertruppe, the description of his meeting with a troupe of Yiddish actors in the Café Savoy in Prague in 1911. This encounter was to have a profound effect on his writing. The passage was later published in an extended version in the...

    £180

  13. [KAMES, Henry HOME, Lord].

    Grundsaetze der Kritik, aus dem Englischen übersetzt, von Joh. Nikolaus Meinhard. Vienna, Johann Thomas...

    Vienna, Johann Thomas Edlen von Trattnern, 1785-6.

    A Viennese reprint of the first German translation of the Elements of criticism, by Meinhard with the approval of Lessing, first issued in 1763-66, instrumental in the dissemination and reception of Kames’s aesthetic theories in Germany and a seminal publication in the formation of pre-Romantic aesthetics.

    £450

  14. KERKHERDERE, Jan Gerard.

    De situ Paradisi Terrestris ... Praecedit... conatus novus de Cepha reprehenso ex Galatarum secundo capite.

    Louvain, Martin van Overbeke, 1729.

    First edition. Kerkherdere addresses the question of the location of the Garden of Eden, the earthly Paradise, accompanying his conjecture with a map engraved by P. E. Boultats of Antwerp; the perusal of various sources, geographical studies and toponymic considerations lead the author, an Imperial historian,...

    £800

  15. KING, Henry.

    A Sermon preached at St. Pauls March 27. 1640. Being the Anniversary of His Majesties happy Inauguration to his Crowne...

    London, Printed by Edward Griffin. 1640

    First edition of ‘a significant Accession day sermon’ (Oxford DNB) by the poet and royal chaplain Henry King, at this time Dean of Rochester, afterwards Bishop of Chichester. This sermon is a paean to the sovereign power of the King, taking as its text Jeremiah 1:10 (‘Behold, I have this...

    £350

  16. [KRAG, Niels, editor.]

    NICOLAUS, of Damascus. Ex Nicolai Damasceni universali historia seu de moribus gentium libris excepta Iohannis...

    [?Heidelberg], Pierre de Saint-André, 1593.

    First edition thus. Comprises observations on the customs of different peoples (Iberians, Celts, Phrygians, Assyrians, Spartans and so on) from the Augustan historian Nicolaus of Damascus’ Universal history, only fragments of which have come down to us (in this case via Stobaeus). The text is printed...

    £300

  17. LEONARDO DA PORTO MAURIZIO.

    Metodo pratico della ven. archiconfraternita degli amanti di Gesu’, e di Maria per fare il santo...

    Rome, nella stamperia del Giunchi, 1773.

    Handsome illustrated edition of this work on the devotion of the Stations of the Cross, or Via Crucis, by the Italian Franciscan preacher and ascetic writer Leonardo da Porto Maurizio (1676-1751). Leonard, who was canonised in 1867, was extremely active in promoting the spread of the devotion of the...

    £550

  18. [LEWIS, Thomas].

    English Presbyterian Eloquence: or, Dissenters Sayings ancient and modern. Collected from the Books and Sermons...

    London: Printed for T. Bickerton … 1720.

    First edition of a vehement anti-Presbyterian tract. The text comprises extracts from the work of contemporary Dissenting writers and politicians followed by Lewis’s own ‘Remarks’: ‘What vile Punning and Jingle is here, what a clutter about Melting and Ramming, and Firing, and Dismounting? Figures...

    £425

  19. [LITURGY].

    Cerimonie piu’ notabili della messa privata; Cavate dalle rubriche del Missale, ed altri autori da un Sacerdote D.C.D.M....

    Turin, Gianfranco Mairesse, 1739.

    As far as we are aware unrecorded edition of this uncommon treatise on the celebration of the mass and its associated rituals. Dealing both with private (low) masses and with solemn mass and solemn vespers, the work explains the meaning and performance of the non-verbal aspects of the liturgy: genuflection,...

    £335