BOURBON, Jacques de, le Bâtard (d.1527). La Grande & Merveilleuse et Trescruelle Oppugnation de la Noble Cite de Rhodes... par Sultan Seliman. Paris: Pierre Vidoue for Gilles de Gourmont, December 1525.
4o (243 x 175 mm). Title within floral woodcut border, fine woodcut initial letters. (Tape repairs crossing text on A2-4, some light scattered spotting.) Contemporary French calf over pasteboard, decorated in blind, intersecting triple fillets on sides, a panel of angels and animals blocked twice on each cover incorporating Biblical and classical proverbs: AVARUS SIMILIS EST IN INFERNO RESPONSIO MOLLIS FRANGIT IRAM AMOR VINCIT OIA CONTRA DICIT PECUNIA (some drying and cracking). Provenance: early effaced signatures on title; B. Blonsez? (signature on flyleaf); L. Dévemy (signature on flyleaf); Mensing collection (sold Sotheby's, 14 December 1936, lot 92); sold Sotheby's, 18 February 1963, lot 124; purchased from Emil Offenbacher 3 April 1963.
PRESUMED FIRST EDITION, variant issue dated December, 1525, not recorded by Brunet or Graesse, who date the earliest issue at May, 1525. The only edition recorded in American Book Prices Current is dated May, 1526, the same as that in the Rothschild Collection (II:2018), sold Sotheby's London, 18 May 1989, lot 72.
The inscription on the binding is most uncommon, being a jumble of proverbial and Classical quotations. The origin of the first is from Guido Fabe's Summa de viciis et virtutibus, VIII:1; the second "A soft answer turneth away wrath," comes from Proverbs XV:1; the third "Omnia vincit amor" is from Virgil's Eclogues X:69. Possibly the last two should be read together: "Love conquers all," according to the Roman poem: "Money doesn't agree." Adams B-2590; Brunet I:1175; Cioranescu 4604.