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2020-12-30 16:08:06
Geschichte des Gaudentio di Lucca: oder, Merkwürdige nachricht seiner sonderbahren reise durch die sandwusteneyen des innern Africa nach Mezzoranien . mit gelehrten anmerkungen des herrn Rhedin .
Frankfurt und Leipzig van Duren, 1751. 2 vols. in 1, 8vo., titles printed in red and black, (10) + 204 and (2) + 271 + (1)pp., contemporary German half calf over marbled boards, spine fully gilt with raised bands and contrasting morocco labels, red edges. A fine copy. First edition in German: scarce thus. Sometime thought to be the work of Bishop Berkeley, this is in fact a utopian novel by Simon Berington (1680-1755), professor of poetry and philosophy at the English College at Douai. It was translated into German by Johann Bernhard Nack. 'Despite the claim that the author first wrote in Italian, this work was originally written in English by a Catholic priest. It gained early fame because it was attributed to Bishop George Berkeley. Neither Berkeley nor Berington bothered to deny the attribution, and over ten editions in English, French, and German were published between its first publication in 1737 and the death of the author in 1755. Berington, through the testimony of his hero Gaudentio di Lucca at the Inquisition, describes the kingdom of Mezzorania in northern Africa. In this utopian society the guiding principle is that Nature is the source of all that is good for mankind. There are echoes of other 18th-century writers, Fénelon and Lescondel, for example, and perhaps even the earlier Vairasse. Mezzorania, it should be noted, is still another of those countries set in a remote area, occupied, in this case, three thousand years earlier by a people fleeing from invading armies. Without contact with the outside world they have been free to develop in a natural environm … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: John Drury Rare Books ABA ILAB [Manningtree, United Kingdom]
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