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O Uraguay, poema ?.
Lisbon, Regia Officina Typografica, 1769. - Woodcut arms of the Conde de Oeiras (later Marquês de Pombal) in title page. Woodcut headpieces on pp. [1], [21], [47], [69] and [89]. Small woodcut tailpieces on pp. 19, 68, 87 and 102. (3 ll.), 102 pp., (1 l.), 1 integral blank l. 8°, contemporary crimson morocco (spine somewhat darkened, otherwise only very minor wear), almost smooth spine with slightly raised bands caused by recessed cords, in three compartments, gilt fillets, covers richly gilt, all text block edges gilt, faintly gauffered. Light dampstaining in the lower blank margins of the final 8 leaves. Overall in fine condition. ---- FIRST EDITION of a landmark of Brazilian literature. After the fall of the Marquês de Pombal, all available copies were suppressed, and Borba de Moraes describes this edition as "rare and sought after." We have never seen a copy of this book in a contemporary goatskin binding. Moreover, the tooling is very different from any Portuguese binding ot this period we have ever seen. Nor have we ever seen it in a contemporary binding of any color other than brown. Might the binding be Brazilian? A study of Brazilian colonial bindings is sorely needed; none of the experts consulted could shed any light on this question.The theme of this great epic is the Spanish and Portuguese campaign against the seven missionary villages in the region southeast of present-day Paraguay, whose Indian inhabitants had allegedly been incited by the Jesuits to revolt against the provisions of the Treaty of 1750. With its grandeur, pomp, and severe beauty, Basilio da Gama's poetry establishes him as the pioneer of Brazilian Indianism, which was later to become a chief theme of Brazilian letters. Written in run-on blank verse, the poem breaks sharply from the classical manner and is sometimes cited as the first Romantic poem in Portuguese. Garrett, whose own Romanticism was considerably influenced by Gama, judged the @Uraguay "the modern poem that is possessed of the most merit." It is "the best, the most nearly perfect poem to be produced in the entire colonial period," declared Ronald de Carvalho, and "will remain a point of reference in our literature, where we may encounter the hidden roots of that Romanticism that was to mark the dawn of our intellectual independence" (@Pequena história da literatura brasileira pp. 153, 159). According to Bandeira, the @Uraguay is "well, even brilliantly written; it contains beautiful descriptions of nature; and deep and sincere feeling is shown in the moving episode of the death of the heroine, Lindoia" (@Brief History of Brazilian Literature p. 55).The book includes on the final leaf sonnets in praise of the author by two important Brazilian authors, Joaquim Ignacio de Seixas Brandão and Ignacio José de Alvarenga Peixoto.This was one of the earliest books printed at the Impressão Regia, which Pombal had established only a year earlier. It is dedicated to Pombal's brother, Francisco Xavier de Mendonça Furtado (Lisboa, 1700-1769), governor general of Grão-Pará and Maranhão (1751-1759), and Secretário de Estado da Marinha e do Ultramar (1760-1769), who barely outlived the book's publication.José Basilio da Gama (1740-1795), born in Minas Geraes, came to Rio de Janeiro at the age of fifteen to study with the Jesuits. He fled to Portugal upon the Order's expulsion. Then, casting aside his novice's robe, he traveled to Rome, where he was admitted to the Roman Arcadia under the name Termindo Sipilio. Several years later he returned to Lisbon via Brazil, but was imprisoned as a former Jesuit and sentenced to exile in Angola. A poem in honor of the Marquês de Pombal's daughter led to forgiveness, while Gama's increasingly anti-Jesuit attitude earned official favor. This was surely a factor in guiding his choice of subject for his epic, as well as his decision to dedicate the work to Pombal's brother, with a laudatory sonnet to Pombal at the beginning. After the fall of Pombal, however, @O Uraguay became a distinct liability. Gama was l [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Richard C. Ramer Old and Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2014-08-08           Check availability:      IberLibro    

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