Eric Chaim Kline, Bookseller

Eric Chaim Kline, Bookseller

The Religious Ceremonies and Customs of the Several Nations of the Known World: Represented in Above an Hundred Copper-Plates Designed by the Famous Picart. Together with Historical Explanations, and Several Curious Dissertations...: Vol. I (1731), The Ceremonies of the Jews, etc..; Vol. II (1731), The Ceremonies of the Roman Catholicks; Vol. III (1731), The Ceremonies of the Idolatrous Nations; Vol. IV (1735), Part II; Vol. V (1736), Containing the Ceremonies of the Greeks and Protestants; Vol. VI (1737) in Two Parts. Part I. Containing the Doctrine and Discipline of the Church of England, of the Presbyterians, Independents, Anabaptists, Quakers, etc.. Part II. Containing the Various Sects of Mahometans, with an Appendix of the Lives of Mohammed, Omar, and Ali. Vol. VII (1739), Containing the Various Sects of Mahometans. 7 parts in a 6-vol. set [221 Gravure Plates]

London: Nicholas Prevost (Vols. 1-3); Claude du Bosc (Vols. 4-7), 1731-1739. First English language edition. Hardcover. Elephant Folio (15 3/4 x 10 1/2"). Rebacked in calf with original full mottled calf laid to covers, with gilt lettering and tooling to original laid down spines; raised bands and dentelles, housed in three brown cloth slipcase, each with two paper plates with brown lettering on spines. Red edges. Title pages printed in red and black with engraved vignettes, volume four w/o vignette. Historiated and decorative head and tailpieces, enlarged and decorative initials, historiated in volumes four through six. The set contains 221 plates with copperplate engravings, one more than called for in volume 4, according to the table of plates in volume four.

The plates are not always bound in numerical order though, with the exception of a few plates bound in reverse order, they are bound in as called for in the tables of plates. The set shows light sporadic damp-staining in margins of blocks, mostly in very good condition.

Vol. 1: The Ceremonies and Customs of the Jews. (iv) xx, 412pp (Text), (14)pp. (Index), 35 plates. Includes four double page engravings, one with additional wing, and one gatefold. Half-title and title page blank on versos. With translator's preface and detailed explanation of plates in French and English. Introductory essay: Dissertation Upon Religious Worship (1-24). Dissertation on ceremonies and customs amongst the Jews (25-105), comparison of Jewish ceremonies with the discipline of the church, followed by an index (107-160) and a third dissertation, a supplement to the two forgoing dissertations of ceremonies of the Jews (161-185), and a continuation of the third dissertation on the ceremonies of the Jews (187-235), including the double page engraving of the interior of the Spanish-Portuguese synagogue and a four page wing fold showing the Pope and entourage during their entry to the Vatican. Part II of Vol. I offers religious ceremonies and customs of all the nations of the world, the Christian religion, Catholic (237-412) plus index for both, Jewish and Catholic ceremonies.

Binding with some wear, some bumps at corners and small chips and horizontal crack through middle of spine, professionally repaired. Bookplate of Edward Place on inside front cover, here some damp-staining and extensive pencil note.

Vol. 2: The Ceremonies of the Roman Catholicks. viii, 345pp. (Text), (18)pp. (Index), 27 plates. Includes two double-page engravings. Half-title, title page and explanation of plates. Part IV of the ceremonies of the Roman Catholics (1-121). The fifth and last part of the dissertation elaborates on the ceremonies of the Romanists (123-189). Starting at page 191 the historical memoirs relating to the inquisition are treated, including the illustrations relating to the Inquisition, and a descriptive list of the illustrations (191-345), followed by the index.

Binding with light wear along edges, small chips and light fraying at head of spine. Book plate as above and some damp-staining here.

Vol. 3: The Ceremonies of the Idolatrous Nations. x, 474pp. (Text), 45 plates. Half-title, title page and explanation of plates (X). Containing the ceremonies of the idolatrous nations, written originally in French, and now published in English, with considerable amendments and additions. Dissertation on the Americans, and their conformity of their customs with those of other nations, ancient and modern (1-194). The conformity of the customs of the East-Indians, with those of the Jews, and other ancient nations (195-272). A discovery of the sect of the Banians written by Reverend Mr. Lord (273-308). Dissertation on the religion and manners of the Bramins, extracted from the memoirs of the Reverend A. Roger, and A. Hollander (309-364). An historical dissertation on the Gods of the East-Indians (365-407), with a supplement to the preceding dissertations describing ceremonies of the East-Indians (408-444), followed by the index.

Two of the plates, 93 and 92, are bound in in reverse order. Plate 104 with about a quarter inch missing at right border, with minor loss of image. Light wear along edges of binding with small chips and very light scuffing. Book plate as above. Small triangle chip on front free endpaper. Some light staining in margin of plate 67, barely affecting image.

Vol. 4: The Ceremonies and Religious Customs of the Idolatrous Nations. Part II. (4) ix, (8) 514pp. (Text), (13)pp. (Index). 58 plates. Plate 165 facing page 483 is not called for in table of plates. Includes eight double-page engravings. Plates 124 and 125, 126 and 127, 149 and 150, and 160 and 161 are bound in reverse order. Half-title, title page w/o publisher's device. Contains preface of the translator, "... a Gentleman some Time since of St. John's College in Oxford." Originally planned to be placed before the first volume, "...but the Proprietors of this Edition have thought fit to transpose it, for no other Reason than that it seemed to be crowded in there; whereas it adds a Lustre here..." (This as preface in volume I). Table of contents and directions for the bookbinder, plates. Supplement to the preceding discourses on the religion of the Banians, part two (1-158). Followed by A Letter from Father Bouchet, Missionary of the Society of Jesus, to the Right Reverend Father in God ****** Huet, some time Bishop of Avranches (159-187), page 160 misnomered 260. Dissertation on the Religious Ceremonies of the Natives of China and Japan, etc. (189-389). On the Persians (390-428), the Africans (429-514), followed by the index.

Light wear along edges of binding with bottom compartment of original spine missing. Book plate as above.

Vol. 5: Ceremonies of the Greeks and Protestants. (8) 470pp. (Text), [24]pp. (Index), 19 plates. With five double-page engravings, including five on double pages. Half-title, title page, contents and explanation of plates. Religion of the Greeks, including Nestorians, Ethiopians, Armenians, Marrionites, etc. (1-315). Protestants, Evangelical and Reformed (317-470), followed by the index.

Plates are not numbered in this volume. Binding with light wear along edges with small chips on spine of original leather. Book plate as above.

Vol. 6: Ceremonies and Religious Customs of the Various Nations of the Known World. (6) 228pp. (Text), (6)pp. (Index), 11 plates. Includes five double-page engravings, one of them (222) bound in upside down. Half-title, title page, contents, explanation of plates. Dissertation on the Reformed Episcopal Church of England (1-93, misnomered 83). Presbyterians (95-110). Quakers (111-139). Several sects and Fanatical Meetings (140-164). Anabaptists (165-184). Adamites and Pre-Adamites (185-194). Several modern mystical sects (195-207). Unitarians, Anti-Trinitarians, Socinians, etc. (208-228), followed by the index.

Bound with Vol. 7: Title as Vol. 6: (8) 164pp. (Text), (8)pp. (Index), 26 plates. Includes seven double-page engravings, one of them with additional wing fold (Kaaba). Half-title, title page, contents and explanation of plates. Various sects of the Mahometans. Introduction to the History of Mahometism history (1-76), Mahometan religion (77-121). Religious ceremonies of Mahometism (122-150). Supplement and amendments. The religion of the Sabeans (151-156), followed by an additional double page plate depicting a synagogue scene during Purim and one plate of the German Jews in their synagogue. Additions and corrections of the former volumes, ceremonies of the Jews, Roman Catholics, Greeks and Idolatrous Nations in the East-Indians, with one additional plate (157-164), followed by the index.

Light wear along edges with small chips. Book plate as above. Some damp-staining in bottom margins of pages 132 to 137 of volume 6.

First English language edition of this monumental and groundbreaking work in the newly emerging field of comparative religion. Written during the first decades of the intellectual movement known as the Enlightenment, "The Religious Ceremonies and Customs of the Several Nations of the Known World" is a comprehensive and critical account of established religions and considered to be one of the most spectacular illustrated works of the 18th century.

Bernard Picart (1673-1733) was one of the most prolific and talented engravers of his age. Jean Frederic Bernard (1683-1744) was a French language bookseller and publisher of Huguenot background based in Amsterdam. Together they prepared thousands of pages and hundreds of engravings intended to capture the ritual and ceremonial life of all the known religions of the world.

"Cérémonies et coutumes religieuses de tous les peuples du monde" (the original title in French), or simply "Picart" as it was often subsequently known endeavored to "present all religions, even those of the "idolatrous peoples," as impartial as possible. It argued for religious toleration by showing the danger of fanaticism, wherever it could be found, and by praising those religions, such as Islam, that offered toleration to others. At a time of widespread anti-Semitism, this work offered one of the most sympathetic portraits then available of European Jewry." (For more information, see: "The Book That Changed Europe: Picart and Bernard's Religious Ceremonies of the World," by Lynn Hunt, Margaret C. Jacob, and Wijnand Mijnhardt. Belknap Press / Harvard University Press, 2010).

The 221 striking engravings depict stately papal rituals with casts of thousands; Jewish families around the Seder table; Russian Orthodox baptisms and Protestant funerals; the burial of a king of Guinea; a Japanese temple with a thousand idols; Freemasonic temples and Chinese altars, etc. Good+ to very good condition. Item #50472

Price: $9,500.00

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