Christianae Pietatis idea in VII: operibus misericordiae corporalis, spectanda & legenda proposita
STENGEL, O.S.B. Carl (1622)
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OWNED BY LORD RONALD GOWER, STRATFORD SHAKESPEARE SCULPTOR
Engraved title page, eight full page engravings in text.
8vo. [1-5], 152pp. Nineteenth-century plain blue, straight-grained morocco by Charles Lewis, gilt edges, inside gilt dentelles of simple triple fillet with floral cornerpieces (corners worn, wear to joints, some sunning to upper portion of spine and top of upper board).
Augsburg (Sara Mang),
The Beckford Library copy of the sole edition of this uncommon work of private devotion by Carl Stengel OSB (1581-1663), on the corporal works of mercy, with evocative, full-page engravings illustrating each of the seven works: feeding the hungry; giving drink to the thirsty; clothing the naked; ransoming the captive; visiting the sick; sheltering, or welcoming the homeless; and burying the dead. Though attributed to Sadeler in the Beckford Library sale catalogue, the engravings here are unsigned.
Carl Stengel, brother of Georg Stengel S.J., entered the Benedictine order at the age of fourteen, at the monastery of Ulrich & Afra in Augsburg. He later became abbot of the monastery of Anhausen, but was forced to flee several times during the Thirty Years War, about which he kept a diary. Extremely prolific, his oeuvre focused principally on works of church history, religious history and hagiography (see 'Carl Stengel' on the LiteraturPortalBayern, of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek; open access).
The printer of the present work is Sara Mang (fl.1617-24), widow of Christoph Mang (1567-1617), who operated in Augsburg at the sign of the pine.
Provenance: 1. From the library of inveterate collector, novelist, politician and patron of the arts William Beckford (1760-1844); sold in the third portion of Sotheby's Beckford Library Sale of 1882-3, this book lot 2225 on the tenth day, July 12th, 1883, described thus: 'fine plates by Sadeler, blue morocco extra, gilt edges, by C. Lewis.' 2. Inscription on front free endpaper, 'I bought this little book at B.... it belonged to the Beckford Library. RG. 16.2.83', and exlibris on front pastedown with initials 'R G' and Sutherland arms; those of Lord Ronald Gower (1845-1916), sculptor, some-time MP and writer, known for his statue of Shakespeare at Stratford. Known as the 'beautiful boy' of the House of Commons, Gower is thought to be Oscar Wilde's inspiration for the character of Lord Wotton in Dorian Gray. A high-profile target in the fevered atmosphere of the years surrounding the Wilde trials, Gower's long-term partner was journalist Frank Hird (1873-1937). 3. Bookplate with duke's coronet, monogram ('G' for Gower?) and date, 1913 on verso of free endpaper, with shelfmark pencilled above. 4. 'Revd. White binding no.4744 -7-' inscribed in pencil on front free endpaper, in neat hand.
Discreet repairs to pp.11, 15 & 37, not touching text or images, minor sporadic foxing and waterstains.
(OCLC: University of Illinois, Benedictine College Library, University of Florida. UK: BL, Ushaw College Library, University of Glasgow, Oxford.)
Stock Code: 248091