A handsome and well-regarded early Bible, printed in Lyon in 1519, by Jacques Mareschal for Simon Vincent.
The beautiful book eminates history: from its aged vellum binding, through its French manuscript endpapers, to its period-style typography and woodcuts, you have the distinct impression you are holding centuries of history.
This was a visually impressive Bible for its time; the printer's device of Simon Vincent decorates the title page and last printed page, there are a number of woodcuts, including a delightful full-page creation and small engravings at Genesis, Joshua, Isaiah, Malachai, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Romans, Revelations, and many unique 8-line initials. A scholar, Baudrier, attributes the woodcuts to an artist active in Lyon at the time, Guillame Leroy.
And, an added treat, the front flyleaf has a calligraphic parrot!
In addition to the Biblical text there are also a number of tables, prefaces, marginal glosses (notes), and a Hebrew names dictionary (Hebrew name to Latin meaning).
This copy includes a rhyming mnemonic device table at the rear (four rhyming lines represent each chapter of the Bible), by Franciscus Gotthi.
Adams B997, USTC - 145003, OCLC - 2500243745
Physical Attributes -
Binding measures approx. 18 x 12.5 x 6.25 cm (pages 17 x 12), octavo. Vellum binding, possibly 18th century (based on endpapers). Pages - [28, but 30, leaves signed ddv and vi were misbound at the rear], ccccc, [56, but 54, see note on leaves ddv and vi]. Title page in red and black. One full-page woodcut, some small engravings, and many 8-line initials. Text in two columns, with some marginal notes. Tables, etc..
Pagination: aa-bb8, cc4, dd8, z8, Z8, QQ8, RR4, 'D8, 'E6 (with ddv and ddvi interspersed), F8, G8
See pictures. Vellum binding with the pleasing look of antiquity. Soiling, spots, edge wear, etc.. Lower vellum band broke at front board's joint. Faded title in ink on spine in "old hand". Rear board top corner, and 4 cm. at lower edge of vellum chipped. Top-edge darkened with dust and some hints of old page-edge titling.
Front and rear endpaper old French manuscript; some cockling where pasted down, and the gall-ink has eaten through the letter at places, bottom corner of flyleaf chipped. A little separation between, at gutter, between endpaper and title page. Title page soiled, thumbed, several tiny ember holes, bottom corner chipped, 3 cm. tear at gutter, and some annotations. Some darkening of pages, dog-earing, occasional marginal moisture marks (touches text only a handful of pages), errant ink marks, thumbing and fox/rust spots throughout. Bible was used, and there are x marks throughout highlighting important passages. Several marginal notes. Many annotations, in an old hand, around printer's mark at rear. Rear pastedown, and facing endpaper, have some worming.
Despite notes, a pleasing book to peruse; it is not fragile, and its many inhabited and historiated initials add wonderfully to the work. Its condition only reassures the reader that this important work has been referenced and cherished for centuries before.
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