• Fine Printed Books, Manuscript auction at Christies

    Sale 5829

    Fine Printed Books, Manuscripts, Traditional Sports

    23 November 2009, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 164

    ART & ARCHITECTURE -- VISCONTI, Ennio Quirino (1751-1818). Illustrazioni de'Monumenti scelti Borghesiani già esistenti nella Villa sul Pincio ... Date ora per la prima volta in luce dal Cav. Gio. Gherardo de Rossi e da Stefano Piale, sotto la cura di Vincenzo Feoli. Rome: stamperia de Romanis, 1821. 2 volumes, 2° (583 x 440mm). Engraved frontispiece by Pietro Fontana after Agostino Tofanelli, 80 engraved plates, most after Agostino and Stefano Tofanelli and Bernardino Nocchi, some dated 1794 or 1795, numbered 1-48 and 1-32 respectively. Vol. II with engraved headpiece. (Some generally light marginal spotting and occasional waterstaining to plate margins, a few plates in vol. II lightly browned, stab-marks at inner margins.) Unbound sheets with deckle edges, preserved in modern green cloth box.

    Price Realised  

    ART & ARCHITECTURE -- VISCONTI, Ennio Quirino (1751-1818). Illustrazioni de'Monumenti scelti Borghesiani già esistenti nella Villa sul Pincio ... Date ora per la prima volta in luce dal Cav. Gio. Gherardo de Rossi e da Stefano Piale, sotto la cura di Vincenzo Feoli. Rome: stamperia de Romanis, 1821. 2 volumes, 2° (583 x 440mm). Engraved frontispiece by Pietro Fontana after Agostino Tofanelli, 80 engraved plates, most after Agostino and Stefano Tofanelli and Bernardino Nocchi, some dated 1794 or 1795, numbered 1-48 and 1-32 respectively. Vol. II with engraved headpiece. (Some generally light marginal spotting and occasional waterstaining to plate margins, a few plates in vol. II lightly browned, stab-marks at inner margins.) Unbound sheets with deckle edges, preserved in modern green cloth box.

    LARGE-PAPER COPY IN FINE STATE. The publication of Visconti's detailed catalogue of the classical sculpture at the villa Borghese had been commissioned by Prince Marcantonio Borghese (1730-1800), and in 1794 the engraving of a series of folio plates was begun. Although the Prince issued a more modest description of the statues in his collection in 1794, followed by a companion volume in 1797 of the statues and inscriptions recently acquired by the Borghesi from excavations at Gabii, he was forced to flee to France in 1799, leaving behind his unfinished major catalogue and the 80 folio plates so far engraved. After his death, however, G.G. de Rossi, Stefano Piale and Vincenzo Feoli used them as the basis for the present 2-volume folio, later revised and issued with new plates in 1837. Borroni 2152; Brunet V, 1313: "très-bel ouvrage"; Rossetti 11419; Vinet 1510: "grand ouvrage, le seul qui mérite, parmi ceux sur la villa Borgèse, de figurer dans le chapitre aux Galeries et Collections"; cf. RIBA 4138fn.


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