30 April 2008
ASKEW, Anne (c.1521-46). The first examinacyon of Anne Askewe, latelye martyred in Smythfelde, by the Romysh popes upholders. Commentary by John Bale (1495-1563). "Marburg" [Wesel: D. van der Straten], November 1546.
ASKEW. The lattre examinacyon of Anne Askewe, latelye martyred in Smythfelde, by the wycked Synagoge of Antichrist. Commentary by John Bale. "Marburg" [Wesel: D. van der Straten], 16 January 1547.
Two works in one volume, 8° (136 x 86mm). With final blank leaf to each work. Woodcut of Askew on each title-page and device of J. & G. van Kempen at end of each work, ornamental initials. (Occasional small, light stain, a few headlines just shaved, top of C7 in second work cut away with loss of 6 lines, loss of some text on C6v-7r through adhesion.) 18th-century red morocco, leather spine label, marbled endpapers, gilt edges. Provenance: signature erased from title -- Thomas [?] (title inscription) -- Francis Ferrand Foljambe (title stamp).
FIRST EDITIONS of the events and proceedings leading to the execution of the Protestant martyr, Anne Askew. A gentlewoman by birth, Askew was persecuted for her religious beliefs, imprisoned twice for interrogation, and tortured for information about others in her circle, whom she steadfastly refused to name. Bale had Askew's account published surreptitiously in Wesel with his own introduction and commentary, and illustrated by a woodcut portrait of the 25-year-old martyr holding her Bible and with a dragon wearing a papal crown at her feet. She has been celebrated as a Protestant saint and woman writer of the Renaissance. RARE; no copy has been sold at auction in over 30 years. STC 848 (recording 9 copies in UK and 3 [of which 2 imperfect] in USA) and 850 (9 copies in UK and 2 in USA).
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