ANTONINUS FLORENTINUS (1389-1459, Saint).Confessionale (inc.: Defecerunt scrutantes scrutinio) - JOHANNES CHRYSOSTOMUS (pseudo-). Sermo de penitentia. [Cologne: Ulrich Zel, not after 29 August 1468].
Chancery half-sheet 4o (207 x 140 mm): [1-188] table, 1/4r Antoninus, 18/3v Chrysostom, 18/8 blank). 143 leaves (of 144, without the final blank). 27 lines. Types 1:96(107)G (text) and 2:115(120)G (headings). Pinholes visible in outer margins. 4-, 3-, 2, and 1-line initial spaces. Lombard initials, paragraph marks, underlines and capital strokes supplied in red, the first two initials with red and brown pen-flourishing infilled with green. (Quires 17-18 with old reinforcements to inner margins, 18/3v with 3 letters imperfectly inked and supplied by rubricator.)
Binding: contemporary German deerskin over partially bevelled wooden boards, blind-tooled with double fillets to a saltire pattern within a double frame, stamped with repeated impressions of a small round rosette and a set of round evangelist stamps, the tools not in Kyriss or Schwenke-Sammlung (darkened with age, joints cracked with old repairs, tailcap defective), red-stained edges, remains of one brass clasp, pink leather index tabs (trimmed even with textblock); folding cloth case.
Provenance: one narrow strip of manuscript with German neumes on 4-line red stave as sewing guard -- occasional contemporary marginalia -- 17th-century shelf mark N752 in upper margin of -- 19th-century shelfmark L.N.63/St.N.1050 on flyleaf -- S. Pottesman: sale, Sotheby's London, 15 October 1979, lot 22 (to Quaritch).
FIRST EDITION of both texts. The Observant Dominican and reformer, St. Antoninus, archbishop of Florence, composed three different texts on confession which are sometimes treated as parts of a larger work. Published separately under various titles, all three are now usually called Confessionale but distinguished by their incipits. The present text, beginning Defecerunt scrutantes scrutinio, includes sections on the powers of the confessor, the seven deadly sins, the manner of interrogating persons of varying status, and absolution and the imposition of penance. Of the other two treatises, Curam illius habe is a manual for confessors, and Omnis mortalium cura was intended for laymen. All of these works were written before Antoninus' Summa moralis, which includes treatments of the same topics. The Sermo de penitentia, here attributed to St. John Chrysostom, is probably not by him.
Each of Antoninus' three treatises on confession survives in more than one version. Defecerunt is known in four redactions, a short version (printed here), a long version, and two so-called hybrid versions. During the incunable period, this work was published, in one version or another, in some sixty Latin editions, eight editions in Spanish translation, and two in Italian.
The date of the present edition is derived from the rubrication inscription in the ex-Sexton copy, now British Library IA. 2765 (cf. ISTC). In the present copy the half-sheet 5/4.5 was incorrectly imposed; the text should be read in the order 5/4r, 5/5v, 5/5r,5/4v, as noted by a contemporary reader.
H(+Add)C 1162a; BMC I, 181 (IA. 2764); CIBN A-415; GW 2080; Voulliéme Köln 121; Goff A-786.