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Arte nuevo de escribir por preceptos geometricos, y reglas mathematicas .
[Colophon] Madrid , En la Imprenta de los Herederos de Manuel Ruiz de Murga, 1719. - Woodcut and typographical headpieces, woodcut tailpieces, some large and elaborate. Elegant woodcut initials. Total of 42 engraved plates with calligraphic examples and a few portraits. Engraved title-page, (10 ll.), 2 engraved plates, 165 ll. [i.e. 169, including 39 engraved plates (1 folding) foliated with the text: details below]. Folio (30.7 x 22 cm.), contemporary vellum (worn and stained, lower hinge gone), horizontal manuscript short author and title on spine. Lower edges frayed, with fraying sometimes touching the plate; fore-edges nicked, not affecting text; some foxing and soiling, marginal dampstains. Overall in good condition, if just barely so. ---- FIRST and ONLY EDITION of "uno de los libros más importantes de su tiempo sobre el difícil arte de la escritura" (Rico y Sinobas). Aznar de Polanco, one of the best Spanish calligraphers of his time, attempted to transform the art of calligraphy into a geometrical science, resulting in a book that is not only heavily illustrated, but has much more text than is common for this sort of book. This is the first Spanish writing manual listed in the Hofer catalogue; Harvard has 2 copies, both defective. Taking into consideration the rarity of this work on the market, and the fact that many copies are incomplete and / or in very poor condition, the present volume is in a relatively good state.The engravings (by Juan Bernabe Palomino) include illustrations of Aznar's method applied to letra bastarda, letra grifa, letra romanilla, letra de pancilla, letra redonda, letra gotica and various types of initials, as well as full-page calligraphic designs. This copy is complete with the maximum number of plates: the engraved title page, 2 engravings in the prelims, and 39 foliated with the text. Palau suggests that earlier issues may have fewer plates. The numbering is erratic, and was presumably added in a later state, since at least one known copy (at Harvard) has no numbering.Palomino (Córdoba, 1692-Madrid, 1777), perhaps the most important Spanish engraver of his day, was the nephew of Antonio Palomino, and father of Juan Fernando Palomino, both important artists. He had worked for and learned from his uncle, while his son was his disciple. Aznar de Polanco, born in 1663 at Mostoles, was orphaned very young and raised by the local schoolmaster. Aside from calligraphy, he was well versed in mathematics, architecture and fencing. He died in 1736.The collation is very complicated, but this copy appears to be complete. Except for some differences in the order of the leaves, it conforms to that in the Biblioteca Nacional de España, except that the Biblioteca Nacional de España copy contains an extra plate, presumably added, which is dated 1736. Preliminary matter includes the engraved title-page, a plate with medallions of S. Casiano and 3 other saints in a calligraphic frame, a portrait of the author in a calligraphic frame, and 10 printed leaves. The 39 engraved plates within the text are foliated continuously with it, but are not included in the quire signatures. The plates, including the engraved title page and the two plates included in the unnumbered preliminaries, are also numbered continuously from 1 to 42 at the bottom, with the exception of the third, which is completely unnumbered, and the seventh, which is leaf 24 in the foliation of the main text, but which has no plate number. The foliation often repeats (46-47, 57, 112, 120, 128, 138) and sometimes skips (no 59 or 116), but the collation by quires (in-4) is continuous. ---- Palau 21133: calling (apparently in error) for a leaf with 4 medallions as well as a folding portrait of S. Casiano, and uncertain whether there were 37 or 39 plates in the text. Aguilar Piñal I, 3217: calling for only 11 preliminary leaves (without mention of any plates there) and only 37 plates in the text. Rico y Sinobas, @Diccionario de calígrafos españoles p. 139: calling for 165 ll., portrait, and 40 plates foliated with the text. BL, @Eighteent [Attributes: First Edition; Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Richard C. Ramer Old and Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2014-10-02           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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