RUZZANTE, Agnolo, nicknamed Beolco (1502-1542). Dialogo facetissimo et ridiculosissimo di Ruzzante. Recitato á fosson alla caccia, l'anno della carestia. 1528. Venice: Stephano di Alesi, 1554.
8° in 4s (149 x 94mm). 12 leaves. Woodcut device on title-page. Modern polished calf gilt.
Probably the first edition of one of Ruzzante's most famous comic pieces, written in Paduan dialect - he was the first author to introduce dialect into Italian comedy. Ruzzante took the local peasant farmers as his inspiration and at the height of his fame was followed by a large throng wherever he went. His life was spent in extreme poverty, causing Speroni, one of his many admirers, to remark wryly that, whereas his understanding of comedy was unsurprassed, he could not perceive his own tragedy. It is probable that his real name was Ruzzante, also a character in his comedies, and that Beolco was a local corruption of Bifolco, a ploughman. Adams R-974.