Parigi (Paris): Matteo il Maestro, 1609. First edition. Hardcover. 12mo (6 1/2 x 4 1/2"). , 283 leaves (First vol.); , 325 leaves (Second vol.). Contemporary full vellum with handwritten title on spine. Engraved vignette of a medalion bearing the portrait of Pietro aretino on each title page.
The author of this work, Pietro Aretino (1492-1556), was an Italian author, playwright, poet, satirist and blackmailer, who wielded influence on contemporary art and politics and developed modern literary pornography.
Fleeing Rome after two assassination attempts on his life, Pietro Aretino settled in Venice, a more congenial place for his scathing wit, where he remained for the rest of his life. There, Aretino became the first to publish his letters in Italian rather than Latin, which increased his readership since much of Italy's literate population was not schooled in scholarly Latin.
Aretino's gossipy and frequently earthy letters gave readers throughout Italy an insider's glimpse into the lives of the rich and famous. He published more than three thousand of them during his life, and their subjects range over the most diverse areas, including minutiae of fashions, politics, and daily life.
This bound volume contains the first two volumes (out of six) of the author's letters.
Binding darkened and partly age-toned. Previous owner's name in ink at upper margin of front free endpaper. upper corner of leaves 241 to 290 in vol. 2 damaged by fire, and expertly repaired, with minor and sporadic loss of text. Text in Italian. Binding in overall good to good+, interior in good+ to very good condition. g to vg. Item #42666