21 March 2005
ESTIENNE, Henri II (1531-98). Epistola de suae typographiae statu, nominatimque de suo Thesauro linguae Graecae ... Index librorum qui ex officina Henrici Stephani hactenus prodierunt. [Geneva:] Henri Estienne, 1569.
8o (160 x 98 mm). Collation: 1-48 (letter); a-b8 (catalogue). Bound in is the EXCEEDINGLY RARE HALF-SHEET SUPPLEMENT to the catalogue, Appendix ad catalogum librorum officinae Henrici Stephani [Geneva: 1574]: A4 (drop-title, A4 blank). Printer's woodcut device on first title. Roman and greek type. Nineteenth-century green straight-grained morocco gilt, gilt edges. Provenance: G.J. Arvanitidi (bookplate).
THE ONLY PUBLISHER'S CATALOGUE ISSUED BY HENRI ESTIENNE, complete with the supplement added five years later. Also advertised are the Geneva productions of his father Robert that were still in print (designated RS). The catalogue is preceded by Henri's open letter to the friends who had inquired about the current state of his printing shop, and more particularly about progress on his greatest project, the Greek Thesaurus, on which he had been working since the 1550s (published in 1572) and whose publication would prove financially ruinous to the publishing house. He goes into great detail about its superiority and the errors of its predecessors. He also discusses the ignorance of other printers of classical texts in contrast to the merits of Aldus, Badius Ascensius and his father. He ends with a poem addressed to Joachim Camerarius on his plans to participate in the Frankfurt Book Fair (see the following lot). A few minor spots, but IN FINE CONDITION. Pollard and Ehrman pp. 59 and 293. Renouard 95.7, 96.8 and 133.6.
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