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Ad suos compagnones studiantes, qui sunt de persona friantes, bassas Dansas & Branlos practicantes, nouvellos quamplurimos mandat. [With:] [BOLLA, Bartolomeo]. Nova Novorum Novissima, Sive Poemata Stylo Macaronico
[Lyon?]:: “Stampatus in Stampatura Stampatorum,” , 1670. 12mo. 12mo (142 x 80 mm). 191 pp. Two parts, separately titled but continuously paginated. Woodcut peacock device on title. A pretty copy; trifling foxing to title. Eighteenth-century French red morocco, sides with triple gilt fillet, smooth spine gold-tooled with green morocco lettering-piece, edges gilt over marbling, marbled endpapers. Provenance: Marquis de Rognes, engraved armorial bookplate, signed Nicolas de Mire, 1777.***& & Most complete edition of one of the earliest collections of French macaronic poetry (an often burlesque admixture of the vernacular and Latin), celebrated for its valuable descriptions of and notations of early Provençal dance. The preface from the supposed publisher (“Librarius”) is addressed to the “bragardissimis” dancers of France: bragare, in Arena’s personal brand of Latin, means to “have fun,” but Arena’s work, addressed to students, was intended to meet a (semi-) serious need: To attract students to the University of Aix, less popular than the faculties of Avignon and Montpellier, the rector had decided to authorize a ball at the time of graduation for the graduates and their families, but “for certain students, dancing in public was a much more forbidding test than all of those that they had undergone during their studies” (Louisson-Lassablière, p. 268, our translation). Thus Arena’s goal was to familiarize students with the many different “basses danses” currently in fashion. & & Following a prose introduction to the subject, the poem, in 1896 lines, is in two parts, the first being an autobiography in which the author recalls his experiences in the Italian campaigns (he had given his first dance lessons after his return from Italy in 1527). A general introduction to dance and to proper comportment is largely tongue-in-cheek. Of greatest interest for dance historians are the technical descriptions of dances found in a four-page section (pp. 86-90) in French, in which the author uses a stenographic notation system in which each step is designated by the initial of its name, repeated to indicate a repetition of the step. Thus in the description "R c ss d ss d d d ss r c ss a ss r c," "c" signifies "congé," "ss" signifies "deux simples," "d d d" signifies "trois doubles," and so on. Such detailed choreographic records are rare for this period. Each dance description, occupying no more than one line, is prefaced by the title or titles of popular songs or melodies to which it should be danced. & & Included are poems are Rémy Belleau (“Poema macaronicum de bello huguenotico”(pp. 97-106), and Louis Reynier (“Epigramma” (pp. 92-93). Known in over 32 editions, the work was first printed at Lyon in 1529. This edition iincludes a collection of Italian macaronic poetry by Bartolomeo Bolla (first printed in 1604), with satirical poems such as one addressed to the “culinary Muse” (p. 147), lists of attributes (including types of women) associated with various Italian towns (pp. 121-129), and poems in the patois of Bergamo. Brunet I, 393 ("Edition la plus complète que l'on ait de ce recueil") ; Fletcher, Bibliographical Descriptions of Forty Dance Books, 3a ; Clarke, Four Hundred Years of Dance Notation (1987), no. 6; R. Mullally, “The editions of Antonius Arena’s Adsuos compagnones studiante,” Gutenberg-Jahrbuch 1979:146-57. Cf. Marie-Joëlle Louisson-Lassablière, "Antonius Arena ou le Latin macaronique," in E. Bury, Tous vos gens à Latin (2005).
      [Bookseller: Musinsky Rare Books, Inc.]
Last Found On: 2013-07-20           Check availability:      Biblio    

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