Leiden, Pieter Vander Aa, 1707.
Folio [355 x 227 mm], (8) ll. including 1 colored frontispiece, 1 large folding map in color enhanced with gold, 80 pp., 84 pp., 128 pp., 1 folding engraving bound between pp. 98 and 99, tiny hole in white margin p. 12, 52 pp. 56 pp., 32 ll., text leaves slightly browned as usual.
Full stiff vellum, double blind-stamped framing on the covers with central medallion, spine ribbed with handwritten title in ink, sprinkled edges. Publisher’s contemporary binding.
First folio edition, the most beautiful of all, and first Dutch edition illustrated in first issue with the superb folding map ” Novissima et Accuratissima Tabula Regnorum Hispania et Portugalliae Publicis Ac Regiis Viis ornata Excudit Petrus Vander Aa “, representing Spain, Portugal and part of South-West France – (it measures about 630 x 530 mm) -, the frontispiece drawn by J. Goercée and the folding view of Barcelona.
The text is illustrated with 164 copper engravings similar to those in the French 8vo edition. Each measuring approximately 160 x 130 mm, they gently illustrate the main cities, monuments and curiosities of Spain and Portugal at the end of the 16th century. Their captions are generally in French while the text is in Dutch.
The engravings are full of remarkable details of many Spanish and Portuguese cities as travelers could see them at the turn of the 17th century. Some views show rare scenes such as tuna fishing in Cadiz, the procession of the Compostela pilgrimage, Basque women going to church, the way the Inquisition conducted its trials, a procession on the occasion of an auto-da-fé, people condemned by the Inquisition being burned alive, etc.
The copy is also complete with the folding panorama of Barcelona from the sea.
Illustrated books on Spain and Portugal from this period are rarer than on other Western European countries.
The present volume is rare in the classic black and white issue, but exceedingly rare in the present luxury condition: with engraved frontispiece and large map of Spain and Portugal magnificently illuminated at the time enhanced with gold in Vander Aa‘s own workshop.
The publisher’s binding, in blind-stamped vellum, is in perfect condition.