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Celestina: Tragicocomedia di Calisto e Melibea
Bernardino de Bendoni, Vinetia (Venice) 1543 - 16mo. CXIX (119) leaves. Contemporary full vellum, with handwritten title on spine. Engraved title page. Decorative initials. Early Venetian edition of "La Celestina" (as it is usually called after the leading character), a work entirely in dialogue which was originally published in 1499. Its author, Fernando de Rojas, was a descendant of converted Jews. He practiced law, and later in life, served as an alderman of Talavera de la Reina, an important commercial center near Toledo. The book is considered to be one of the greatest works of Spanish literature, and traditionally marks the end of medieval literature and the beginning of the literary renaissance in Spain. Although usually regarded as a novel, it is written as a continuous series of dialogues and can be taken as a play, having been staged as such and filmed. The story tells of a bachelor Calisto who uses the old procuress Celestina to start an affair with Melibea, an unmarried girl kept in seclusion by her parents. Though the two use the rhetoric of courtly love, sex not marriage is their aim. When he dies in an accident, she commits suicide. The name Celestina has become synonymous with procuress, especially an older woman used to further an illicit affair, and is a literary archetype of this character, the masculine counterpart being Pandarus. This work is delightfully illustrated with 17 woodcuts (including title), of which many are formed from the juxtaposition of five small distinct blocks portraying either a human figure or landscape feature. Vellum darkened. Previous owner's name in ink at lower margin of title. Corners of title page slightly chipped (not affecting text). Fore-edge of second leaf partly torn, thus slightly affecting text. Light water-staining at lower margin of last leaves. Text in Italian. Binding in overall fair to good, interior in good to good+ condition. [Attributes: Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: ERIC CHAIM KLINE, BOOKSELLER (ABAA ILAB)]
Last Found On: 2015-07-07           Check availability:      IberLibro    

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