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Scaligeri, Camillo [pseud. of Adriano Banchieri]. La nobiltà dell' asino di Attabalippa dal Perù. Riformata da Griffagno delli Impacci, et accresciuta di molte cose non solo piacevoli, curiose, et di diletto... Venetia: Barezzo Barezzi, 1599. 4to (19.7 cm, 7.75"). , 44, [3 (index)] ff.; illus. $1,000.00
Satiric tribute to the noble donkey, inspired by the "famosa, et eccelsa . . . Signora Torre delli Asinelli" and written by a true Renaissance man who for this work presented himself as King Attabalippa, a fancifully mythic European conception of Atahualpa, last emperor of the Incas. Banchieri, a Benedictine monk, was a notable composer, organist, and music theorist as well as a poet and playwright — and => the copper-engraved title-page of this edition features portions of a six-part canon to be sung by King Donkey and five other animals. In addition, the descriptions of the dog, the horse, the lion, the monkey, and the elephant in the first part of the work are illustrated with in-text woodcuts, and the second part opens with => a woodcut of the animals processing with pomp, circumstance, and a snare drum.
This is an early edition, following the first of 1592. As is generally reported of other copies, not to mention strongly suggested by various bibliographies, La Nobile & Honorata Compagnia delli Briganti dalla Bastina is not present here despite its mention on the title-page.
Provenance: Front pastedown with armorial bookplate of Edward Davies Davenport (1778–1847, "Time deum et honora regem"). Most recently the library of American collector Albert A. Howard, small booklabel ("AHA") at rear.
Adams B142; Brunet, I, 540; Edit16 CNCE 4067; Index Aurel. 112.139. Contemporary vellum, spine with gilt-stamped title-label; binding slightly sprung with vellum lightly dust-soiled, spine label now all but lost. Front pastedown with bookplate as above, and with both early inked and later pencilled annotations; front free endpaper lacking, back free endpaper adhered to back pastedown. Title-page and following one with inner margins repaired, the former with old repair to short tear from outer edge, not affecting image, and with one lower corner at border peculiarly "bleached"(?); first and last few leaves waterstained, with scattered spots of staining throughout, this leaving the illustrations' charm remarkably unaffected. => Uncommon and thoroughly delightful. (37860) Please RESHELVE This.
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