MARIA CLEMENTINA (1702-1735) -- PAOLI, Sebastiano. Solenni Esequie di Maria Clementina Sobieski Regina dell Inghilterra celebrate nella chiesa di S. Paterniano in Fano ... li 23. Maggio MDCCXXXV. Fano: Gaetano Fanelli, .
2° (424 x 274mm). Collation: A-B5 C-D3. Title in red and black with engraved Royal arms, 2 folding engraved plates by Camerata after Michele Marieschi, engraved arms of Clement XII on B5r. (First plate with repaired tear at lower blank margin, A3-4 repaired at outer margin, some browning and spotting, gutter of final two leaves slightly affected by damp, small hole in last leaf.) CONTEMPORARY ROMAN RED MOROCCO PROBABLY BY IACOPO BONA, covers with the Royal arms of James Francis Edward, the 'Old Pretender,' against a mantle painted in blue supported by two putti, wide gilt border of intertwining flowers and stars between fillets, gilt spine in eight compartments, 'Dutch' gilt and floral pastedowns, gilt edges (neat restoration at lower corners, new free endpapers supplied and pastedowns lifted, minor marking and chipping of covers, superficial cracks at foot of lower cover, joints a little rubbed), modern blue cloth box. Provenance: purchased from Martin Breslauer, 1976.
A HIGHLY EVOCATIVE AND HISTORICALLY SIGNIFICANT JACOBITE BINDING. Maria Clementina Sobieski (1702-1735), Polish princess and one of Europe's wealthiest heiresses, suffered imprisonment before being formally married to James Stuart on 3 September, 1719, at Montefiascone. They were invited to reside in Rome by Clement XI who acknowledged them as the (Catholic) King and Queen of Britain. However, the marriage proved 'turbulent and unhappy' and Maria Clementina died aged 32 on January 18, 1735. The richness of this Roman binding, with his own arms as the central decoration, suggests that this was the Old Pretender's copy of the description of the funeral solemnities of his wife. The binding has tools in common with that by Bona reproduced in Armando Petrucci Sulla legatoria romana del XVIII secolo, p. 176; here the same large putti support the Papal arms. In Petrucci's view Bona's work is characterised by 'la nobilità, la compostezza e la maestosità ... Esse, in verità, si pongono fra le più belle produzioni del Settecento romano.' The Old Pretender's arms differ in form from those illustrated in Davenport (p. 256) in the lower half of the fourth quarter; the lion rampant of Scotland in the second quarter is also within a double square rather than a circle. The arms of his dead 'Queen,' depicted on the title, include an amusing element of pastiche. Berlin Kat. 3256.