Anvers, Imprimerie Plantinienne de Balthasar Moretus, 1632.
Folio [311 x 218 mm] of (1) bl. l., (5) ll. including 2 engraved frontispieces, 74 pp. and 3 engraved full-page pl., (1) l., (1) bl. l. A few light foxing on the preliminary ll., 1 plate trimmed shorter. Bound in full contemporary limp vellum, remains of ties, flat spine, untrimmed. Contemporary binding.
Rare first edition of this superb festival book illustrating the entry of Marie de Medici in the towns of Mons, Antwerp and Brussels. Mennessier de la Lance, Essai de Bibliographie hippique, 453; Lipperheide 2661; Landwehr, Splendid Ceremonies, 84. Unknown by Brunet.
“It was 6 months after the Day of the Dupes, on July 18th 1631, that Marie de Medici, defeated by Richelieu, fled from Compiegne, and took the way to the Netherlands, with the intention of withdrawing herself by her son-in-law Charles I of England. She would not come back in France; she stayed in the Netherlands and in Holland, where she never ceased to work against Louis XIII and his minister.” (Picot, Catalogue Rothschild, n°2281).
The queen, with the archduchess Isabelle, asked to visit during her stay Plantin’s famous printing house in Antwerp. Balthasar Moretus, Christophe Plantin’s grandson, who was running the printing company, had prepared a small booklet of 4 pages to memorialize the queen’s visit. Pp 60-63 of the present work reproduce the very fine booklet he presented to the queen.
“Her visit to Plantin’s printing work is narrated on pp. 59-64.” (Landwehr)
The superb illustration, deeply inspired by Rubens, is composed of two frontispieces and of 3 full-page plates.
“A rare and peculiar work. The 1st frontispiece, engraved by Cornelius Galle, represents the Queen receiving in her arms the infant Isabella Clara Eugenia, daughter of Philip II of Spain, dressed as a religious. She had adopted this costume since the death of her husband the archduke Albert in 1621. The 2nd one is composed of the portraits elegantly placed of Marie de Medici and her 5 children. The 3 plates engraved by A. Paulus represent the Queen entries in Mons, Brussels and Antwerp. The first 2 ones represent carriages and corteges of cavalrymen, the 3rd is exclusively maritime.” (Mennessier de la Lance).
A superb and rare festival book ordered by king Charles I of England in honor of his mother-in-law, Marie de Medici, Queen of France, who went into exile in the Netherlands in November 1630. A very fine book, particularly wide-margined since untrimmed, preserved in its original contemporary limp vellum binding.