TITE-LIVE Titi Livii Historiarum Libri.


Titus Livius, Jules Janin's wonderful copy
“Very well executed edition, more accurate than the previous one and which has the merit of offering a far better text”. (Willems) Jules Janin’s wonderful copy, quoted by Willems, preserved in its elegant antique morocco bindings decorated with a mosaic pattern and lace-like decoration.

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TITUS LIVIUS. Titi Livii Historiarum Libri. -[Followed by:] Joh. Fred. Gronovii ad T. Livii Patavini libros superstites notae. Lugd. Batavorum, ex officina Elzeviriana, 1645.

4 parts in 4 volumes 12mo [127 x 72 mm] of: I/ (12) ll., 675 pp., (16) pp., (1) bl.l. ; II/ 751 pp., 14 pp., (1) bl.l. ; III/ 774 pp., (7) ll., (2) bl.ll. ; IV/ (14) ll., 808 pp., (2) ll. A few old handwritten notes in the margins. Bound in red morocco, rectangular olive green morocco panel decorated with mosaic pattern in the center of the covers, large gilt dentelle on the covers, bird tools at corners, flat spines entirely decorated, citron morocco lettering-pieces, inner gilt border, edges gilt. Binding from the 18th century.

A far more accurate edition than the one from 1634. Revised by J. F. Gronovius, it is very well executed and has the merit of offering a far better text than the one of Heinsius from 1634.” (Willems) Willems n°590 (he quotes this copy) and n°405; Brunet, III, 1106; Bulletin Morgand et Fatout n°4970; The Huth Library, p. 855.

The 4th volume of this edition contains Gronovius’ notes; sometimes we find it bound with the 1634 edition, and it is sold separately.” (Brunet)

I have noticed that there is a cancel for the 1645 Titus Livius. Gronovius, who dedicated his edition to the comte d’Avaux, did not correctly manage at first to translate pertinently the expressions ‘Chevalier des ordres du Roi, surintendant des finances’. So that in the initial copies the dedication was addressed to: Claudio Memmio…’; in the others: ‘Claudio de Mesmes’“. (Willems)

This copy is from the first issue with the first version of the dedication.

Titus Livius is introduced to us as the most “modern” of all ancient historians. Let’s see him as passionate educator. What Titus Livius wanted to give his readers, what they expected from him, what could have been politically and morally necessary to them, was a work which by the brilliance of its form and the greatness of its subject would have revived the national dignity after the ordeals and humiliations of trouble times and civil war. Titus Livius is considered as the most literary of roman historians.” (Dictionnaire des auteurs, IV, pp. 511-513).

The work is illustrated with a frontispiece etched engraved by Cornelis Claezoon Duysend.

A superb copy preserved in its elegant bindings from the 18th century in morocco decorated with a mosaic pattern and lace-like decoration as well as bird tools, one of the rarest conditions.

Provenance: it comes from Bourdier de Beauregard and Jules Janin’s collections, with ex-libris. Willems quotes this copy: “A copy preserved in a rich antique binding has been auctioned for 500 frs. Jules Janin”. “This charming book collection that Jules Janin had gathered with so much care, and that he looked fondly with so much love, telling deep down to himself, that among all his books, it would be the more enduring. “Who loves Jules Janin loves his collection, he told me cheerfully, because Jules Janin loves his collection as a companion for good and bad days. This is it, he would add pointing out his full bookshelves, this is the purpose, the crowning of my literary life.This collection would have been in a half-century the most peculiar monument of the literature of a time during which Jules Janin was the arbiter of taste, the criticism oracle, the true representative of the French spirit.” (P.L. Jacob, Paul Lacroix, La Bibliothèque de Jules Janin.)

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