Antwerp, Guillaume Silvius, 1576.
Small 4to [200 x 143 mm]: (8) ll., 325 pp. (some mistakes in the pagination), (15) ll., 60 full-page plates of costumes. Bound in full contemporary overlapping vellum, flat spine with the handwritten title. Contemporary binding.
First edition in Italian, translated from the French edition published at the same date and by the same printer. Atabey 871; Colas 2203 (second issue); Göllner 1663; cf. Mortimer, Harvard Italian, 319 (1580 edition); not in Blackmer.
The woodcuts are reduced copies, by Antonij van Leest, of the engraved plates of the first edition (printed in Paris in 1567). The second Italian edition, printed at Venice in 1580, contains engraved copies of the original plates, together with seven additional plates.
After having described the customs of Algiers, Tripoli, the Barbary States and Scio where he landed when he was going to Constantinople, Nicolay (1517-1583), a traveler from the Dauphiné, insists on what concerns the Turks, the Greeks and the other inhabitants of the Ottoman Empire. His remarks are instructive considering the time when they were published and they even give some curious details. But Nicolay suddenly interrupts his account at the end of the third book; he talks about the inhabitants of Persia and Arabia, countries that he never visited, and he uses in order to fill his text, as well as with regard to the Greeks, the Armenians and the Jews, the ancient and modern authors who wrote about these people and the countries they live in.
“Some bibliographers claimed that the figures of the Travel of Nicolay were engraved after drawings by Titian: the assertion of the author, in his foreword, cast doubt on that. Besides, these figures were very well engraved on wood”.
The present edition is illustrated with 60 superb wood engraved plates of costumes.
A nice wide-margined copy preserved in its original overlapping vellum binding.
Provenance: this copy belonged to Philip Yorke, Earl of Hardwicke, editor of Athenian Letters, London, 1798 (engraved ex libris) and to Sefik E. Atabey (engraved ex libris).