20 November 2002
DANTE ALIGHIERI (1256-1321). La divina commedia. Florence: all'Insegna dell'Ancora, 1817-1819.
4 volumes, 2° (461 x 312mm). Engraved medallion portrait on titles, 125 etched plates after Luigi Adamolli and Francesco Nenci. (Some offsetting onto text, light spotting.) Contemporary Florentine blue calf, covers elaborately panelled in gilt and blind, inner scrollwork panel with red and green morocco onlays at corners, flat gilt spines, green endpapers (some light scuff marks to covers, a little rubbing of joints).
'MAGNIFICA EDIZIONE' (Gamba). Luigi Adamolli drew the designs for the Inferno and Purgatorio, undertaking much of the etching himself, while Francesco Nenci was responsible for the designs to the Paradiso. Gamba compares their work with John Flaxman's, and it makes a still more interesting comparison with Blake's illustrations to Dante. The lavishly-decorated binding on this copy is in perfect keeping with the grandeur of the edition. Gamba 402. (4)
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