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CANZONIERE ("Songbook"); and TRIUNFI ("Triumps") ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPT
ILLUMINATED RENAISSANCE MANUSCRIPT ON VELLUM, Italy, Florence, c. 1430-1450. 255 x 175 mm. 169 folios, complete (collation: i7, ii-v8, vi-xiv10, xv8, xvi-xvii10, xviii11), written by two hands: ff. 8-50, in a rounded humanistic script; ff. 1-7 and ff. 51-169 in a calligraphic mercantesca script, in brown ink on up to 34 lines (justification: 160 x 85 mm.), parchment ruled in plummet, catchwords, rubrics and numbering of sonnets in bright to pale red, paragraph marks in red or blue, first letters of each verse off-set and often stroked in yellow, painted blue or red initials with contrasting pen decoration, TWO ILLUMINATED decorated initials in blue with white tracery on gold grounds with green, blue and pink scrolling leafy and floral designs, gold disks and filigree penwork extending in the margin: f. 8 (5-line high, with a butterfly) and f. 136 (3-line high), ILLUMINATED FRONTISPIECE (fol. 8) originally with illuminated arms painted in the lower margin [now effaced] surrounded by gold disks on hairline stems, colored flowers and two butterflies, a few marginal inscriptions and/or corrections. BINDING: Bound in a later (18th-century) red velvet binding over pasteboard, smooth spine, small paper label on spine withThomas Phillipps' shelfmark, gilt edges. TEXT: This codex contains the two major vernacular poetic works of the “Father of Humanism.” The public fame of Francesco Petrarch (1304-74), the celebrated scholar and composer, father of Renaissance humanism and friend of Boccaccio, was based on the poems included in this manuscript. Petrarch's Italian lyrics have been known as the Canzoniere since the Renaissance. Most of the poems (here 366 sonnets and one ballad) relate to Petrarch's life-long love for Laura, a woman of beauty and excellence. Their central theme is the expression of the eternal conflict between the human and the divine in Human nature. As with his Canzoniere, Petrarch worked on the Trionfi over his lifetime, beginning in 1338 and completing the work just before his death in 1374. Written in terza rima, they set out a triumphal procession of the allegorical figures Love, Chastity, Death, Fame, Time, and Divinity, and their effect of each on his beloved Laura. Intact copies of these important literary texts are infrequent and expensive. PROVENANCE: Copied in Italy, probably in Florence, as suggested by style of decoration and linguistic features. Two distinct hands copied this manuscript; the second might well be that of the Florentine money-changer and scribe Bese (or Besse) Ardinghelli, active in Florence in the 1430s and 1450s. Belonged to Charles James Fox (1749-1806), a colorful figure in eighteenth-century politics. Belonged to Sir Thomas Phillipps (1792-1872), MS 2963, sold to Phillipps by Thomas Thorpe (Rodd and Thorpe, London) in 1820. Belonged to Charles Filippi, French bibliophile, his bookplate on the verso of the first flyleaf; European Continental Collection. CONDITION: Some stains to parchment; effaced illuminated arms on fol. 8; ink a bit faded in some parts, but overall a nice copy. Full description and photographs available. 464
      [Bookseller: Les Enluminures ]
Last Found On: 2013-08-01           Check availability:      Biblio    

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