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PALLADIO, Andrea (1508--1580)
[Quattro libri dell'architettura. English, French and Italian. 1715--1720]
The architecture of A. Palladio; in four books. Containing, a short treatise of the five orders, and the most necessary observations concerning all sorts of building, as also the different construction of private and publick houses, high-ways, bridges, market-places, xystes, and temples, with their plans, sections, and uprights. To which are added several notes and observations made by Inigo Jones never printed before. Revis'd, design'd, and publish'd by Giacomo Leoni, a Venetian; ... Translated from the Italian original.
London: printed by John Watts, for the author, 1715--[1720].
4 vols ; 45.6 cm. (2º)
I: [14], 54, [6], 33, [1], [4], xxx p., engr. frontis., engr. port., XLIII [i.e. 31] pl. (VIII--XXX,XXXV--XXXVI, XXXVIII--XLIII) : [12] illus. (I--VII, XXXI--XXXIV, XXXVII)
II: [4], 37, [2], 23, [1], [2], xxi, [ 1] p., LXI pl.
III: [6], 37, [1], [2], 23, [1], [2], xxii p., XXII [i.e. 20] pl. (numbered I-XXII, 2 with 2 numbers each, 1 double)
IV,i: [6], 33, [1], [2], 20, [2], xx p., LIV [i.e. 48] pl. (4 with 2 numbers each, 1 with 3 numbers, 7 double)
IV,ii: [4], 17, [5], [2], 12, [2], xii p., LV--CIV [i.e. 43] pl. (3 with 2 numbers each. 2 with 3 numbers each, 7 double)

Leoni's edition was the first complete edition in English of Palladio's Quattro libri (q.v.) and the only English translation available until Benjamin Cole's edition was published in parts from 1732 to 1734 (1736 ed., q.v.), and as such it marked a key moment in the history of British Palladianism. It includes parallel titles and texts in French and Italian. Only the Book I title-pages are dated; book II was issued in 1717 or 1718, book III in 1718, book IV part 1 in 1719, and book IV part 2 in early 1720. Despite the claim in the title, the English text was translated by Nicholas Dubois from the French translation of Roland Fréart de Chambrai (first published in 1650) and not directly from the Italian. The promised 'Notes and Observations made by Inigo Jones' were not published until the third edition, 1742. The portrait of Palladio engraved by B. Picart supposedly after Veronese has been shown to be after a portrait of an unidentified sitter by Sebastiano Ricci. The engraved plates, although not entirely accurate, formed a considerable advance in quality, size and decoration on the previously available woodcuts and include three plates (book II, pl. LXI; book IV, pl. CIII--CIV) by Fréart. The first two books having sold out by 1720, a second edition with the letterpress in English only was issued in 1721 (q.v.). There are lists of subscribers in books I, III, and IV part 1. See BAL 2389 and Harris and Savage (pp. 355--8) for the publication history and a detailed description of an ideal copy. The Soane copy as described has each book with the English letterpress followed by the plates, the French letterpress and the Italian letterpress. In books I, II and IV part 1, an Italian dedication (to George III, to the Count Palatine, and to the 'Signori Sottoscriventi') bound in with the English preliminaries. ESTC t95463; Fowler 223; Harris and Savage 683; BAL, Early printed books, no. 2389.

Copy Notes Bound in three volumes (books I--II; books III--IV part 1; book IV part 2). Volume I inscribed in pencil on front free-endpaper 3 vol 6.6.0 / Mr Taylor. / 19th July 1814, corresponding to an entry in Soane's Note Book for that date. (S.N.B.). Martin Taylorwas paid 6 guineas 'for Josiah Taylor' on 20 July 1814. (Archive 7A/15/40). Volume I rear free-endpaper inscribed in pencil with bookseller's code nw/-.

Binding Mid-C18th sprinkled calf, gilt double-ruled borders, gilt-ruled and roll-tooled inner borders and panels, gilt-tooled corner ornaments, gilt-tooled spin, red morocco spine-labels, marbled endpapers.

Reference Number 2943


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