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.
Eyn Sendbriff … uber die frage. Ob auch yemandt, on glawben verstorben selig werden müge &c. An Er Hansen von...
[Wittenberg, N. Schirlentz, 1522].
First edition, rare, of a momentous letter on predestination addressed by Luther to his friend Hans von Rechenberg. Luther meditates on the subject of predestination and salvation by faith; while firm in his notion of faith as a necessary requisite for salvation, he outlines the possibility that...
MABLY, Gabriel Bonnot, Abbé de.
Observations on the Romans. Written originally in French …
London: Printed for R. Griffiths … 1751.
First English edition of this Roman history (first published in the same year in Geneva as Observations sur les Romains). Mably studies episodes from the pre-imperial era (the seven kings, Gracchi and Punic wars), before skimming the vast majority of imperial dynastic rule to finish with a chapter...
[MAFFEI, Giovanni Pietro and Emanuel ACOSTA.]
Rerum a societate Jesu in oriente gestarum volume. In quo hæc ferme continentur....
Naples: Orazio Salviani, 1573.
Third and best edition of the earliest detailed history of the Jesuit missions in the East, especially Japan. Included for the first time in this edition are five pages of Japanese characters in printed facsimile, ‘Specimen quoddam litterarum vocumque Japonicarum; desumptum e regis Bungi diplomate’...
De patientia aurei libri tres.
Brescia, Bernardinus de Misintis, 30 May 1497.
First edition of Mantuanus’s work containing -on recto of m3- a lengthy reference to America, one of the very few 15th century instances: a ‘mention of discoveries of islands in the Atlantic, noting their size and the fact that they are inhabited. Because none of the ancient geographers knew...
Euchologion, ek pollon hoon proteron eiche sfalmatoon hoti malista anakatharthen [in Greek].
(Colophon:) Venice, Antonio Pinelli, 1602.
I. First edition of Maximos Margounios’s important version of the Euchologion, one of the principal liturgical books of the Orthodox Church.
Practical Sermons, by the late Rev. Joseph Milner, M. A. Master of the Grammar School, and Vicar of the Holy Trinity...
York: Printed by G. Peacock; and sold by Mathews … London; Deighton, Cambridge [and others in York, Hull, Leeds and Halifax]. 1800.
First edition, rare, collecting 21 sermons with a biography of Milner (1745-1797), headmaster of Hull Grammar School and church historian. Milner was largely responsible for a revival in fortune of the Grammar School, where he took charge in 1767. As a clergyman he leaned towards a moderate Calvinism...
MORI, Ascanio de’.
Mantua, Giacomo Ruffinello, 1575.
First edition of a rare Renaissance collection of tales in prose and verse.
[NAUDÉ, Philippe, attr. author].
Histoire abrégée de la naissance & du progrez du Kouakerisme avec celle de ses dogmes.
Cologne, Pierre Marteau, 1692.
First edition of the earliest work on the Quakers to be published in French. In his survey of English Quakerism the author gives voice to widespread contemporary English criticisms of the movement, radicalizing the charge of Socinianism into one of ‘pure deism’ and ultimately atheism.
De vita excellentium imperatorum. Interpretatione et notis illustravit Nicolaus Courtin ... in usum serenissimi...
Paris, Frères Barbou, 1726.
An attractive later Delphin edition (first 1675) of the surviving biographies of the first-century BC Roman writer Cornelius Nepos. Part of an original series of ‘Lives of famous men’ (De viris illustribus), the surviving biographical sketches, mostly of generals, include Themistocles and Hannibal....
NEW AND COMPLETE FAMILY PRAYER-BOOK (THE),
or Church of England Man’s Divine Library: being an universal Illustration, Commentary,...
London: Printed for Alex. Hogg … [1784-5.]
First edition thus, rare, published in 36 weekly parts, each originally accompanied with an illustration, and now correctly bound according to the complicated ‘Directions to the Binder’ at the end. Wright’s exhaustive compilation, with notes and commentary on each page, assembled calendars, the...
Τηϛ καινηϛ διαθηκηϛ απαντα. Novum Jesu Christi domini nostri testamentum, ex regiis aliisque...
[March 1st] anno D. 1629].
An uncommon seventeenth-century miniature New Testament, ‘the smallest Greek Testament ever printed, with the exception of Pickering’s miniature edition of 1828’ (Darlow & Moule), printed by Jean Jannon in Sedan, and preserved in a rare contemporary book-bag.
Opuscula Mathematica, philosophica et philologica. Collegit partimque Latine vertit ac recensuit Joh. Castillioneus...
Lausanne and Geneva, Bousquet & soc., 1744.
First edition of Newton’s collected works edited and introduced by the Pisa alumnus Giovanni Salvemini da Castiglione. The edition contained twenty-six works which, while having appeared previously, were not easily accessible, from Newton’s mathematical works and optical lectures, which were greatly...
‘Prieres et ceremonies de l’ordination 1766’.
Diocese of Soissons, France, 1766.
An attractive manuscript ordinal detailing the ceremonies to be followed and the prayers to be employed in ordinations, covering the tonsure, admission to the minor orders of porter, lector, exorcist, and acolyte, and admission to the major orders of subdeacon, deacon, and priest.
Reference to Henri-Joseph-Claude...
Adversus paganos historiarum libri septem. Vetustorum librorum auxilio à mendis vindicati, et annotationibus...
Cologne, Maternus Cholinus, 1561.
First Fabricius edition of Orosius’s highly influential historical apology of Christianity, composed in the early 5th century at the request of St Augustine, at a time when the collapse of the Roman empire was popularly attributed to the anger of the gods that the Romans had defected to Christianity....
Caution recommended in the use and application of scripture language. A sermon preached July 15, 1777, in the Cathedral...
Cambridge, printed by J. Archdeacon for T. & J. Merrill (and others), 1777.
First edition. A sermon (on 2 Peter iii, vv. 15–16) preached by Paley, author of the celebrated Evidences of Christianity (1785), at the invitation of Edmund Law, Bishop of Carlisle. ‘Paley’s connection with the Law family greatly advanced his clerical career. He regularly spent vacations with...
Defensiones duae, quibus D. Ioannis Sturmii rectoris Antipappis duobus respondetur, Maiori, & Epitomico. De charitate,...
Tübingen, Georgius Gruppenbachius, 1580.
Rare first edition of Pappus’s most important work in his pamphlet war with Johannes Sturm over the Lutheran Formula of Concord and its imposition in Strasburg. Pappus (1549-1610) studied in Tübingen and Basel before becoming professor of Hebrew and then of history at Strasburg. In 1578 he was appointed...
Weitere Beiträge zur Texteskritik des Pausanias von Hermann Hitzig. Dem Jahresbericht des Gymnasiums in Burgdorf vom...
Bern, Druck von B. F. Haller, 1876.
Tabula processum seu ordinem ultimi divini et criminalis judicii exhibens; cum adjunct eiusdem brevi demonstratione...
Cleves, Gerhard Verstegen, 1625.
First edition of this strange and rare treatise on the Apocalypse and the Last Judgement, illustrated with dramatic plates by Gillis van Scheyndel. It is the first book printed at Cleves in the Lower Rhine region of northwestern Germany. At the head of each plate appears a letter (or letters) which serve...
Pompe funebri di tutte le nationi del mondo, raccolte dale storie sagre et profane.
Verona, Francesco Rossi, 1639.
First edition of Perucci’s extensively illustrated account of funeral practices, inscribed by a Scottish antiquary and documented book collector. A fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and later the Royal Society, Walter Bowman (1699 – 1782) travelled extensively over the course of five decades in...
Postill, Dat is, Uthlegginge der Evangelien so up de Sondage und Göttlike feste in der gemene Gades.
Bremen, Thomas de Villiers, 1617.
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.