Pisa: Tipografia Nistri, 1836. 8vo. 220 x 140 mm. (8 3/4 x 5 1/2 inches). 25 pp. Later wrappers.
Rare pamphlet describing the composition and methods for recreating the colors used in the frescos that were painted on the walls of the 12th century Campo Santo in Pisa. In addition, the pamphlet includes the techniques for how the plasters of the fresco were made at the time of their creation and an analysis of the ingredients that that went into their composition.
The author, a professor of chemistry at the University of Pisa, provides historical information on the fresco's as well his analysis and description of the medieval paintings. The Campo Santo is monumental cemetery the construction of which began in 1287 and was not completed until 1464. The frescos were applied to the walls of Campo Santo from about 1380 until 1600. By the middle of the 18th century restoration was required and by 1836 when Branchi published his pamphlet the need for conservation was becoming critical. The Campo Santo was heavily damaged during WWII and restoration of the building and the frescos is ongoing. Branchi addresses this letter to Carlo Lasinio, the noted Italian engraver, collector and dealer.
Rare: ICCU cites 9 copies in Italy, NUC cites only a copy at NYPL. OCLC only cites copies in Bologna, Florence, Paris and Pisa. (117). Item #117