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La calligrafia storico-critico-teoretico-pratica
Siracusa: Nelle Regie stampe del Pulejo, Impressore del Vescovo, 1794. Hardcover. Very Good. 8vo - over 7¾ - 9¾" tall. 8vo. [19.5 x 14.5 cm], (4) ff. 192 pp., 4 pp., 3 plates. Final 4 pages before the plates, titled Saggio dell' Effemeridi di Napoli sopra il libro della Calligrafia. are dated 1797. Bound in contemporary patterned paper wrappers. Pale waterstaining to cover, title and preliminary pages, minor worming in bottom gutter of second half. Otherwise a fresh, clean copy. Very rare first and sole edition of this book on the history and practice of writing, including three plates illustrating a full upper and lower case script as well as the individual components and correct proportions of each letter. Capodieci not only instructs the reader how to make, space, and join letters, but also provides a rather whimsical history of writing, a chapter on tachygraphy and other forms of shorthand, an overview of proposals for a universal language, and a discussion of the many uses of writing, including forgery. He also includes chapters on the tools of modern writing-quills, ink, inkwells, and paper-and a history of writing implements beginning with stone inscription and wax tablets. In addition to instructions and information, the work is replete with practical advice-and colorful opinions. If your ink bleeds through the paper, Capodieci advises, rub the paper with gum powder placed in a piece of cloth, use thicker ink, and find a quill with a thinner tip. His descriptions of other nations and periods, however, is rather more contentious. "The art of uniting letters to form words. is a secret unknown to the Chinese," he notes, adding, "and the source of and reason for their ignorance is that they spend their whole lives learning to write" (!) That said, La Calligrafia is in fact a learned work, with discussions of a very broad range of cultures and writing systems, and informed references to the likes of Locke, Leibnitz, and Kircher, as well as important but lesser known figures such as John Wilkins in the field of linguistic philosophy and Thomas Shelton in the field of tachygraphy. Capodieci wrote a number of titles on local history, all published in Siracuse or Messina. OCLC lists Newberry, Washington U. ICCU lists two copies in Ascoli, both evidently without the plates. * ICCU IT\ICCU\FOGE\020833; not in Mirra.
      [Bookseller: Martayan Lan, Inc.]
Last Found On: 2017-06-22           Check availability:      IOBABooks    

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