ROSELLIS, Antonius de (1380-1466). Monarchia, sive De potestate Imperatoris ac Papae. Venice: Hermannus Liechtenstein, 23 June 1487.
Median 2o (323 x 216 mm). Collation: a10 b-n8 o6; s2 (a1r blank, a1v text, o5v colophon and quire register, o6 blank; r table, v blank). 113 leaves (of 114, without the blank). 67 lines. Types: 6:150G (headings and incipits); 5:74G (text). Two 22-line, one 16-line, and numerous 5- and 4-line spaces for initials, printed guide-letters. Finely rubricated in a contemporary Spanish hand: the large initials in red (1) or blue (2) with vermicular penwork infill and flourishes in blue or red, the smaller initials alternately red and blue with contrasting penwork decoration. The unsigned bifolium containing the table is bound in at front. (Occasional light marginal foxing, some minor marginal worming.)
Binding: contemporary Spanish reversed calf over beech(?) boards, two brass catchplates on upper cover, remains of one (of two) blue-stained leather clasps, title lettered on upper edges (crudely rebacked in the 16th or 17th-century with two pieces of sheepskin, upper inner hinge cracked, lower cover wormed and with loss to leather, front free endleaf detached), a few deckle edges preserved; folding cloth case.
Provenance: a few contemporary marginalia in two different hands (note on e3v relating to the definition of heresy) -- 18th-century shelfmarks on first leaf of table (cropped) -- [Quaritch, Early Books catalogue, spring 1998, no. 53]
FIRST AND ONLY EDITION of a treatise on the temporal powers of the papacy and its relationship with the General Council, by the Arezzan jurisconsult Antonio di Roselli. Following the Council of Constance and the reconciliation of the Great Schism, conciliar theory, according to which supreme authority over the Church rests in a general ecclesiastical council, went into eclipse. Roselli departed from accepted doctrine by not admitting direct papal power over temporal matters, and by advocating a Gersonian moderate conciliarism. Although like Gerson, Roselli defended the primacy of the papacy, in 1491 his work was condemned to be burned (along with the Conclusiones of Pico della Mirandola, Rome 1486) by Niccolò Franco, Bishop of Treviso and papal legate at Venice (P. Lopez, Sul libro a stampa e le origini della censura ecclesiastica, Naples 1972, p. 66). In 1499 the Dominican Henricus Institoris published a refutation of Roselli's work (In errores Monarchiae Antonii de Rosellis, Goff I-161).
This copy was brought to Spain at an early date, as attested by the charming initials with their sinuous pen-and-ink decoration and the characteristic plain reversed leather binding. HC 13974*; BMV V, 357 (IB. 21984); CIBN R-217; Harvard/Walsh 2050; IGI 8441; Goff R-327.