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    "... the first systematic handbook of papal history..."

    Bartholomaeus Sacchi de Platina. Vitae Pontificum. [Liber de vita christi: ac pontificum omniu(m)]... [Nurnberg: Anton Koberger, August 11, 1481]. First Koberger edition (originally published in Venice in 1479). Approximately 11.5 x 8.25 inches. [a10,b-6,s8,t6,v8.] [a1/a2? mounted]. [128] folios. Rubricated throughout and with a five-line red initial 'M' on the first leaf, and a fourteen-line initial 'N' on first text leaf with white decoration. Bound in late nineteenth-century half pebble-grain calf over marbled boards, marbled endpapers. The first and (possibly) second leaves [a1r Hieronymus Sqarzaficus letter to Palatina, a2r Platina's Prohemium to Sixtus IV as described in Bod-Inc (possibly two separate leaves) most likely supplied from another copy (or perhaps another edition), and have been cut and are pasted to the verso of the endpaper without text loss (their versos are blank). The first leaf of text is pasted to the fly-leaf at its inner margin. Some rubbing to binding, a few occasional pin wormholes in blank margins, repaired tear in last leaf. Still, a good copy.
    "When Paul II abolished the ordinances of Pius, Platina with the other new members was deprived of his office. Angered by this, he wrote a pamphlet insolently demanding from the pope the recall of his restrictions. When called upon to justify himself he answered with insolence and was imprisoned in the Castle of Sant' Angelo, being released after four months on condition that he remain at Rome. In February 1468, with about twenty other humanists, he was again imprisoned on suspicion of heresy and of conspiring against the life of the pope... After his release on July 7, 1469, he expected to be again in the employ of Paul II, who, however, declined his services. Platina threatened vengeance and executed his threat, when at the suggestion of Sixtus IV he wrote his Vitae Pontificum Platinae historici liber de vita Christi ac omnium pontificum qui hactenus ducenti fuere et XX (Venice, 1479). In it he paints his enemy as cruel, and an archenemy of science. For centuries it influenced historical opinions until critical research proved otherwise. In other places party spirit is evident, especially when he treats of the condition of the Church. Notwithstanding, his Lives of the Popes is a work of no small merit, for it is the first systematic handbook of papal history. Platina felt the need of critical research, but shirked the examination of details. By the end of 1474 or the beginning of 1475 Platina offered his manuscript to Pope Sixtus IV; it is still preserved in the Vatican Library. The pope's acceptance may cause surprise, but it is probable he was ignorant of its contents except insofar as it concerned his own pontificate up to November, 1474. After the death of Giandrea Bussi, Bishop of Aleria, the pope appointed Platina librarian with a yearly salary of 120 ducats and an official residence in the Vatican. He also instructed him to make a collection of the chief privileges of the Roman Church."(C. E.).
    Goff P769. Hain/Copinger 13047*. GfT 1152. Pell Ms 9503 (9325). CIBN P-444. Aquilon 542. Arnoult 1208. Hillard 1648. Neveu 487 . Torchet 768. Polain(B) 3187. IDL 3713. IBE 4657. IGI 7858. IBP 4469. Saj--SoltŽsz 2772. Mendes 1049. Coll(U) 1233. Coll(S) 162. Madsen 3289. Nentwig 3511. Ernst(Hildesheim) I,I 335, II,II 226. Voull(Trier) 1018. Voull(B) 1669. Leuze(Isny) 40. Ohly-Sack 2383. Hubay(Augsburg) 1688. Hubay(EichstŠtt) 850. Borm 2172.Wilhelmi 517 . Mittler-Kind 909. Walsh 683. Oates 996. Bod-inc P-343. Sheppard 1466, 1467. Rhodes(Oxford Colleges) 1427. Proctor 2005. BMC II 420. BSB-Ink P-566. ISTC ip00769000. From the Krown & Spellman Collection.
    Please visit HA.com/6117 for an extended description of this lot.


    More Information:

    Platina, Bartholomaeus Sacchi de. Vitae pontificum. [Liber de vita christi: ac pontificum omniu(m)... Nurnberg: Anton Koberger, 1481, August 11. Folio. 293 x 203mm. [a10,b-6,s8,t6,v8.] [a1/a2? mounted]. 128ff. Late 19th c. 1/2 pebble-grain calf over marbled boards, some rubbing; marbled endpapers; the first leaf [a1r Hieronymus Sqarzaficus letter to Palatina. a2r Platina's Prohemium to Sixtus IV.as described in Bod-Inc or are these two separate leaves?-- From another copy? Another edition?] have been cut and are pasted to the verso of the endpaper without text loss ( their versos are blank),the first leaf of text is pasted to the fly-leaf at it's inner margin; a few occ. pin worm holes in blank margins, repaired tear in last leaf. Rubricated throughout with a 5 line red initial 'M' on the first leaf, 14-lie initial 'N; on first text leaf with white decoration. "Bartolomeo Platina, originally named Sacchi, was born at Piadena (Platina in Latin), near Mantua, in 1421; he died at Rome, 1481.
    In 1457, he went to Florence, and studied under the Greek scholar Argyropulos. In 1462 he proceeded to Rome, probably in the suite of Cardinal Francesco Gonzaga. After Pius II had reorganized the College of Abbreviators (1463), and increased the number to seventy, Platina, in May 1464, was elected a member.
    When Paul II abolished the ordinances of Pius, Platina with the other new members was deprived of his office. Angered by this, he wrote a pamphlet insolently demanding from the pope the recall of his restrictions. When called upon to justify himself he answered with insolence and was imprisoned in the Castle of SantÕ Angelo, being released after four months on condition that he remain at Rome. In February 1468, with about twenty other humanists, he was again imprisoned on suspicion of heresy and of conspiring against the life of the pope...After his release on July 7, 1469, he expected to be again in the employ of Paul II, who, however, declined his services. Platina threatened vengeance and executed his threat, when at the suggestion of Sixtus IV he wrote his Vit¾ Pontificum Platin¾ historici liber de vita Christi ac omnium pontificum qui hactenus ducenti fuere et XX (Venice, 1479). In it he paints his enemy as cruel, and an archenemy of science. For centuries it influenced historical opinions until critical research proved otherwise. In other places party spirit is evident, especially when he treats of the condition of the Church. Notwithstanding, his Lives of the Popes is a work of no small merit, for it is the first systematic handbook of papal history. Platina felt the need of critical research, but shirked the examination of details. By the end of 1474 or the beginning of 1475 Platina offered his manuscript to Pope Sixtus IV; it is still preserved in the Vatican Library. The pope's acceptance may cause surprise, but it is probable he was ignorant of its contents except insofar as it concerned his own pontificate up to November, 1474. After the death of Giandrea Bussi, Bishop of Aleria, the pope appointed Platina librarian with a yearly salary of 120 ducats and an official residence in the Vatican. He also instructed him to make a collection of the chief privileges of the Roman Church."[CE] Goff P769. Hain/Copinger 13047*. GfT 1152. Pell Ms 9503 (9325). CIBN P-444. Aquilon 542. Arnoult 1208. BuffŽvent 423. Hillard 1648. Neveu 487 . Torchet 768. Polain(B) 3187. IDL 3713. IBE 4657. IGI 7858. IBP 4469. Saj--SoltŽsz 2772. Mendes 1049. Coll(U) 1233. Coll(S) 162. Madsen 3289. Nentwig 3511. Ernst(Hildesheim) I,I 335, II,II 226. GŸnt(L) 2016. Voull(Trier) 1018. Voull(B) 1669. Leuze(Isny) 40. Ohly-Sack 2383. Hubay(Augsburg) 1688. Hubay(EichstŠtt) 850. Borm 2172.Wilhelmi 517 . Mittler-Kind 909. Walsh 683. Oates 996. Bod-inc P-343. Sheppard 1466, 1467. Rhodes(Oxford Colleges) 1427. Proctor 2005. BMC II 420. BSB-Ink P-566. ISTC ip00769000.



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