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  BOOKS 

PIRANESI, Giovanni Battista. [The rare first edition of Piranesi's study of the antiquities of Rome]
Le Antichità Romane. Rome: Bouchard & Gravier, 1756-7. 4 vols, large folio, contemporary full calf, gilt decorated in compartments, black calf title & volume labels on spines, marbled edges and endpapers. Vol I: pp. [xi]+40+xi+iii+iv+iii+[ii], engraved frontis portrait and 44 numbered plates (6 double-page, one two-sheet map, 7 single page, thirty pages with two plates), with 8 engravings in text. Vol II: pp. 63 numbered plates (one two-sheet folding plate, 46 double-page, 16 single page including title and list of plates. Vol III: 54 numbered plates (one two-sheet folding plate, 46 double-page and 10 single-page, including title). Vol IV: 57 numbered plates (five two-sheet folding, 24 double-page, 28 single page including title and index). Complete. Some spotting throughout.
A fine example of the first edition, second issue, of Piranesi's monumental survey of the antiquities of Rome, with which he established himself as the leading light of the archaeology of Rome. Having spent eight years recording artefacts and buildings, including the the extensive remains of sepulchres, he published this collection of of over two hundred plates. About half of the items he recorded are now lost. According to Piranesi himself only seventy copies of the first issue had been printed before he lost patience with his patron Viscount Charlemont's failure to send funds promised to underwrite the costs of publication. He removed the dedications to each volume, expunged Charlemont's name from the text and added the text of two letters he send to the viscount demanding the promised funds (dated February 1757). He also has the first letter displayed in the Vatican, Barberini and Corsini Libraries in an attempt to embarrass Charlemont to pay, as an ink manuscript note to the letter printed here states. This footnote, composed by Piranesi and probably written by him, also appears in the British Library's example of the Antichità, so perhaps was an addition Piranesi made to every English customer's copies. Provenance: with the bookplate of Hugh, Duke of Westminster, dated 1884.
[Ref: 18074]    £92,500.00 ($129,500 • €104,803 rates)


PIRANESI, Giovanni Battista. [Three of Piranesi's studies of the antiquities of Rome]
Lapides Capitolini... [&] Le Rovine del Castello dell'Acqua Giulia... [&] Descrizione e Disegno dell' Emissario del Lago Albano... Rome: Piranesi et al,, 1762-4. Large folio, contemporary full calf, gilt decorated in compartments, black calf title labels on spines, marbled edges and endpapers. Three works in one. Part I: half-title, etched title, frontis. dedication portrait, two-sheet folding plate, pp. (iv)+61 with two inset plates. Part II: half-title, etched title, pp. 26 with three inset plates, 18 numbered plates on 17 sheets. Part III: etched title, pp. 19 with two inset plates, 9 numbered plates, including 7 double-page and one two-sheet folding.
Three of Piranesi's studies of the antiquities of Rome. The 'Lapides Capitolini', dedicated to Clement XIII, records the inscriptions on monuments in the Capitoline Hill, including a list of consuls up to the time of Tiberias. The second work describes the fountainhead of the 'Aqua Julia'. The last is the first of a series of three publications by Piranesi on the antiquities of the region of Lake Albano, including images of cavernous reservoirs reminiscent of Piranesi's 'Carceri'. An early printing: later versions substituted Piranesi's 'Antichita di Cora' for the 'Lago Albano'. Provenance: with the bookplate of Hugh, Duke of Westminster, dated 1884.
[Ref: 18087]    £12,500.00 ($17,500 • €14,163 rates)


PIRANESI, Giovanni Battista. [Piranesi's four-volume study of the antiquities of Rome]
Le Antichità Romane. Rome: Stamperia Salomoni, 1784. 4 vols, large folio, half morocco, gilt decorated in compartments, marbled boards, new endpapers. Vol I: pp. [ii]+40+xi+iii+iv+iii+[ii], engraved frontis. portrait and 44 numbered plates (6 double-page, one two-sheet map, 7 single page, thirty pages with two plates), with 8 engravings in text. Vol II: pp. 63 numbered plates (one two-sheet folding plate, 46 double-page, 16 single page including title and list of plates. Vol III: 54 numbered plates (one two-sheet folding plate, 46 double-page and 10 single-page, including title). Vol IV: 57 numbered plates (five two-sheet folding, 24 double-page, 28 single page including title and index) plus two un-numbered plates. Complete. A few plates age-toned.
Piranesi's monumental survey of the antiquities of Rome, with which he established himself as the leading light of the archaeology of Rome. Having spent eight years recording artefacts and buildings, including the the extensive remains of sepulchres, he published this collection of of over two hundred plates. About half of the items he recorded are now lost. Compared with the first edition there is one plate replaced, XLIV of volume IV, with the two unnumbered plates added after.
[Ref: 18096]    £58,000.00 ($81,200 • €65,714 rates)


Records: 1 to 3 of 3