Il Solimano. Tragedia

Autore: BONARELLI DELLA ROVERE, Prospero (1580-1659)

Tipografo: Pietro Cecconcelli

Dati tipografici: Firenze, 1620

Formato: in quarto


4to (217x160 mm). [12, including the engraved title page], 162, [2]. With 5 engraved folding plates. Collation: a6 A-V4 X2. The plates are engraved by Jacques Callot after Giulio Parigi. Contemporay colored boards. Some marginal worm holes to the first leaves only occasionally affecting the text, some scattered stains. A very good copy.

FIRST ILLUSTRATED EDITION, second state of the title (with the inscription below the Medici arms and the artist's signature at bottom left), of this tragedy, which was first performed in Florence in 1618 and first printed without illustration at Venice in 1619 in a 12mo edition.

Jacques Callot illustrated the work, following the designs of his tutor and colleague, Giulio Parigi, an architect and the chief designer of courtly festivities under the Grand Duke, Cosimo II de' Medici. Callot was also employed by the Medicis, and this is one of the last books he produced for the Medicis, since he returned to his native Nancy following the death of Cosimo II in 1621.

“The dramatic finale shows the city of the tyrant Soliman in flames. The moveable scenes - the first in the history of the theatre - picture contemporary Florence. The whole of its effective contrasts of dark and light, seems fantastic, yet it is the rational and realistic portrait of a fantastic, imaginary subject” (O. Benesch, Artistic and Intellectual Trends from Rubens to Daumier as shown in Book Illustration, New York-Cambridge, 1969, p. 17).

Allacci, p. 729; Cicognara, 1086; Gamba, 1536; Kat. d. Ornamentstichslg. Berlin, 4112; Libreria Vinciana, 3870.