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PIRANESI, Giovanni Battista (1720--1778)
[Varie vedute di Roma antica, e moderna. 1752]
Raccolte di varie vedute di Roma si antica che moderna intagliate la maggior parte dal celebre Gianbatista Piranesi e da altri incisori. Le sudette sono in numero di novanta tre, e si vendono in Roma da Giovanni Bouchard librajo al Corso vicino a San Marcello.
Roma, nella stamperia di Giovanni Generoso Salomonj. 1752.
[2] p., [46] etch. pl. (= 92 impressions) : etch. t.-p. vignette

This is a publisher's compilation of small-scale views commissioned for various guide-books to Rome published between 1741 and 1748 - in particular for the sixth and subsequent editions of Pietro Rossini's Il Mercurio errante delle grandezza di Roma (1750 ed., q.v.) and the anonymous Roma antica (moderna) distinta per regioni (rioni), both of which were published in 1741 by Fausto Amideo in partnership with G.L. Barbiellini (for a summary of the complex history of Piranesi's contribution to these publications see BAL, Early printed books no. 2564, Notes). The earliest form of the present compilation, with only 27 plates by Piranesi, was issued by Amideo in 1745 under the title Varie vedute di Roma antica e moderna. By 1748 this number however had increased to 47, as Piranesi's versions gradually replaced earlier, cruder views by other hands. The present edition was issued by Bouchard (who seemingly acquired the plates of the entire collection from Amidei for this purpose) as part of the complete set of Piranesi's works that he had began publishing in 1751 under the collective title of Le magnificenze di Roma (q.v.). Of the 93 etchings present (which, apart from the title-page vignette, are printed in facing pairs on the inner two pages of conjugate bifolia), 48 are signed as by Piranesi, with the remainder being either unsigned or signed as by J.L. Legeay, P.F. Duflos, J.C. Bellicard, and P. Anesi. Of the unsigned etchings three have been attributed to Piranesi by John Wilton-Ely in Piranesi: complete etchings (viz. 'Archigymnasio della Sapienza', 'Palazzo Borghese' and 'Veduta del Porto di Ripetta' [BAL 2564, pl. 29b, 37a & 38b]) and Paul W. Nash has suggested that some of the plainer and more conventional unsigned views (e.g. the 'Arco di Giano' and 'Il tempio di Pallade' [BAL 2564, pl. 3b & 4b]) might well represent youthful work by the master dating from around 1742 (see BAL 2564, Notes).

Copy Notes Bound (2) with an early issue of Piranesi's Vedute di Roma (q.v.) to form vol. [I] of a two-volume set of Le magnificenze di Roma (q.v.). Front free-endpaper inscribed in ink TB 408 B1757 (possibly a shelfmark and year of acquisition?) and in pencil by a later hand Vol 6. Paginated in faded ink manuscript 149--239 top right (rectos only but including versos in count).

Binding C18th calf, triple gilt-ruled borders, gilt-tooled spines, green morocco spine-labels, gilt-lettered 'Opera de Piranesi / I (II)'.

Reference Number 6399


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