Le lettre di M. Pietro Aretino, di Nuovo con la gionta ristampate, e con somma diligenza ricorrette. Venetia, Per Curtio Nauo e Fratelli, 1539 (in Venetia, per Venturino de Roffinelli, December, 1538). (Bound with:) Al sacratissimo Re d'Inghilterra il secondo libro de le lettre di M. Pietro Aretino.

ARETINO Pietro (1547)


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Woodcut medallion depicting Aretino on title page, printer's device on title verso, and on verso of penultimate leaf of Vol.I; woodcut portraits of Aretino on title and verso of final leaf of Vol.II, historiated, white-on-black woodcut initials. 

2 vols in one. 8vo (152 x 95mm). 225ff, [1]p, [7]ff (final leaf blank); 591 (misprinted as 561), [13]pp. Brown morocco, covers panelled with fillets, with intricate ornamental centrepiece and corner-pieces, and inside gilt dentelle border, marbled endpapers, gilt edges; spine with five raised bands, gilt ornaments in each compartment and title lettered in second (boards slightly bowed). 


Rare early editions of the first two books of the collected letters of Tuscan writer and poet Pietro Aretino (1492-1556). Published over the course of around twenty years (1538-57) in six volumes in total, Aretino's almost 3,000 letters were extremely popular; Curtio Navo's edition of the first volume was one of at least eight editions to be printed in Venice between 1538-9 alone. The second volume here, Al Sacratissimo Re, is the second edition of the second book (first published 1542). 

Aretino corresponded with many of the notable individuals of sixteenth-century Europe, including the Holy Roman Emperor, the Pope, Michelangelo, Veronica Gambara, Pietro Bembo, members of the Medici and Gonzaga families and the monarchs of France, Portugal, Hungary and Poland. The dedication of the second volume of letters to Tudor king Henry VIII earned Aretino a gratuity from the English monarch. Alongside what they show of Aretino's impressive personal connections, the letters are significant for the colourful vernacular in which they are written. 

Small book-plate on inside front paste-down. Sparse marginal annotation in neat hand, in brown ink (some loss due to trimming) and sidelining in both ink and pencil throughout. 

Both title pages with significant repairs, with some loss; repairs to upper blank margins of first 23 leaves of first volume and sporadically thereafter throughout both, in several cases touching text. 

CNCE 2409, 2466. 

[OCLC: Vol. I: 1 in the US (Harvard), UK: Warwick. Vol. 2: US: Yale, Harvard and Illinois].

Stock Code: 228047

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