DE MARINIS, Tammaro (1878-1969). Catalogue d'une collection d'anciens livres à figures italiens appartenant à Tammaro de Marinis. Milan: Bertieri and Vanzetti for Ulrico Hoepli, 1925.
Large 4o (318 x 235 mm). LIMITED EDITION OF 440 COPIES. Color frontispieces and 277 black-and-white plates.
RETROSPECTIVE PARISIAN BINDING COMMISSIONED BY THE AUTHOR FROM PAUL GRUEL, FOR PRESENTATION TO HIS WIFE DONNA CLELIA, soon after publication: gold-tooled light-brown crushed morocco, covers decorated to a French Renaissance design of straight and curved fillets, bold hatched tools, spine tooled and lettered in compartments, blue morocco doublures with arabesque border, CLELIA DE MARINIS lettered at foot of front doublure, GRUEL on back doublure, brown silk liners, original printed wrappers bound in, gilt edges. Provenance: Clelia de Marinis, née Zucchini (1886-1971).
No. 1 of 40 copies hors commerce. De Marinis was without question the most influential Italian book scholar, binding historian, collector, benefactor of libraries, and bookseller of the 20th century. This private-library catalogue describes 233 early illustrated books, of which twenty-two appear to be unique. Many came from the Italian portion of Fairfax Murray's matchless library. In the early 1960's De Marinis sold the collection to Conte Vittorio Cini (now preserved in the Fondazione Cini on San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice), except for a few books disposed of earlier, such as the vellum presentation copy to Henry VII of the 1507 Fano Vigerius, which was sold by B.H. Breslauer to the British Museum in 1954. A charming and informative portrait of De Marinis (and Donna Clelia) is sketched by Dr. Breslauer in the Hoepli Festschrift (1997), pp. 259-277: "Tammaro de Marinis Remembered." The binder Paul Gruel succeeded his father Léon in 1923, and died in 1954 (aged ninety). BBB Wittockiana 51.