Ameto over comedia delle nimphe fiorentine.

BOCCACCIO Giovanni (1524)


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Title within ornamental woodcut border, woodcut initials, woodcut printer's device on verso of penultimate leaf (M7). Italic type.

8vo (152 x 105mm). 95, [1]ff. (D2 misbound between D6 & D7). Quarter calf over modern paper-covered boards, spine gilt with five raised bands, black morocco label with gilt lettered title in second compartment (joints split, boards scuffed, worming at foot of spine).  

Venice, per Nicolo Zopino e Vicentio compagno, 20 December,

Early edition of this allegorical, pastoral comedy by Giovanni Boccaccio, based on the text published by the Giunta press in 1521. Composed 1341-42 and first published in 1478, this work is generally seen to be the forerunner of the Decameron, and is a mixture of prose and verse intended to demonstrate the civilizing influence of love. Ameto, 'vagabondo giovane', encounters a group of nymphs, representing the virtues, in the wilderness where he lives and over the course of the stories they tell, 'd'animale bruto, uomo divenuto essere li pare' - he felt himself transformed from a brute animal into a man. The influence of the Ameto has been identified in the later pastorals of Sannazaro and Bembo, Tasso and Guarini; echoes of one of the tales in particular, concerning the troubles of an aged man in satisfying his younger wife, can be identified in Chaucer's The Merchant's Tale (Correale, 5).

Of particular note in this edition is the attractive woodcut device on the verso of f.95, representing the legend of St. Nicholas and the gold coins. This volume is an excellent example of the oeuvre of Niccolo Zoppino, whose woodcut title pages and device contributed to something of an early 'house style'. 

One instance of annotation (lower margin, f.39v). 

Two blank portions of title page excised and repaired, barely touching text. Occasional staining but otherwise in good condition.

CNCE 6260. BMSTC (Italian), 108. Adams, B2126. R. Correale, Sources and Analogues of the Canterbury Tales, Vol. I (Brewer, 2003), 5. 

Stock Code: 228147

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