Facetiae Selectiores: quibus ob argumenti similitudinem accesserunt Henrici Bebelii, P.L. Facetiarum Libri tres. Sales item, sev facetiae ex Poggij Florentini Oratoris libro selectae.

FRISCHLIN Nicodemus (1600)


Please contact us in advance if you would like to view this book at our Curzon Street shop.

Woodcut device on title page and portrait of Frischlin on verso of title page, ornaments, headpieces, initials throughout. Roman, italic and gothic type. 

8vo (155 x 91mm). 135ff.  Eighteenth-century boards, spine with gilt bands and title lettered in gilt on label in second compartment, ribbon page marker (boards stained and discoloured, spine bumped, corners worn). 

Strasbourg, Haeredum Bernhardi Iobini, 

First edition of this collection of facetiae, humorous, often obscene witticisms, stories and writings, from three of the form’s foremost fifteenth- and sixteenth-century practitioners. 

The facetiae are rather representative of the attitude and countenance – if not the otherwise scholarly oeuvre – of the first individual in this volume, German philologist, poet and mathematician Philipp Nicodemus Frischlin (1547-90). A teacher at Tubingen before he lost his job, he was threatened with prosecution for immorality, and was eventually imprisoned for his insubordinate attacks on ministers and the nobility, ‘condemning [them] for their arrogant refusal to consider men with high academic titles as equals, and reprimanding nobles collectively for their lack of moral virtue and cruelty toward the peasantry’ (MacHardy). He died while trying to escape out of the window of his prison cell in 1590. The frequently salacious tone of his facetiae is matched by those of Heinrich Bebel (1472-1518) and Poggio Bracciolini (1380-1459); claimed by some as the ‘primary German exponent of the genre’ (Coxon), Bebel’s compositions are the German answer to those of Poggio. 

Ownership inscription on front free endpaper in nineteenth-century hand, dated 1810; consistent marginal annotations throughout (some lost due to trimming of pages). 

Some loss to text at head and fore-edges of pages due to trimming; waterstaining at foot of leaves, and worming of lower blank margins throughout. Consistent browning. 

Adams 1047. Brunet II, 1401. 

E. Bigi & A. Petrucci, 'Poggio Bracciolini (1380-1459)', Treccani Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani (Vol. XIII).  S. Coxon, 'Friendship, Wit and Laughter in Heinrich Bebel's Facetiae', Oxford German Studies 36 (2007), 306-20. K. J. MacHardy, 'Cultural Capital, Family Strategies and Noble Identity in Early Modern Habsburg Austria', Past & Present 163 (1999), 36-75.

Stock Code: 227942

close zoom-in zoom-out close zoom