Ars Amatoria

Hecatomphila che ne insegnia l’ingeniosa arte d’Amore – Deiphira che ne mostra fuggir il mal principiato amore, pur hora venuto ne le mani de gli huomini.

Venizia: Marchio Sessa, 1534. Item #754

Beautiful and elegant edition of the Manuale d’Amore (Love Handbook) written by Leon Battista Alberti, which discusses how Renaissance women are loved and feared by the men in their lives and households.  Originally published as two works in Padua in 1471 under the common titles of Hecatomphia and Deiphira, Alberti first proposes a dialogue of an experienced woman speaking to young female listeners and teaching them how to gain and preserve a lover’s affection.  In Deiphira Alberti reverses course and creates a dialogue between a young man and his mentor and demonstrates how through the act of love and passion a woman enchains man, clouds his reason and ability to exercise his willThis edition printed in Venice in 1534 combines both of these rare titles into one essay and continues the tradition of ars amatoria, the instructional elegy on love, first written by Ovid in the second century.  Guido Cavalcanti and Giovanni Boccaccio contributed to this tradition in the 13th century, and Alberti among others in the centuries to come would continue to write about the impact of amorous relations between men and women and the extacy and sorrow caused by the passions in the lives of mankind.

Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani, I, p. 703. British Library, Short-Title Catalogue of  Books Printed in Italy, p. 15.  Sander, Le Livre a Figures Italien, I, 149.   Brunet, Manuel du Libraire, I,131.  Ebert, A General Bibliographical Dictionary, I, 346.


Price: $5,000.00

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