Barcelona: Imprenta-Escuela de la Casa Provincial de Caridad, 1945. First Edition. Small 4to. vi, 130 pp., illustrated. Original printed wrappers (a little worn, some dust-soiling). One of 500 numered copies from a total edition of 1000, this one being No. 160. NOT ex-library! Very good. Item #3151
Essential catalogue of 724 incunables, the Catalonian imprints particularly well described, with extensive bibliographic references for each entry, and with numerous illustrations in the text. There is no digital surrogate for this catalogue (or the 1967 Supplement), nor has it been superceeded as we learn from the Bibl. Univ. de Barcelona's own website:
"Currently, a large portion of the incunabula collection awaits recataloguing. While this effort will give us definitive figures, we can estimate at present that the collection houses some 830 editions and nearly 1,240 copies.
"Of all the libraries in Spain, the collection of fifteenth-century editions in the Rare Book and Manuscript CRAI Library ranks third in number of copies and editions after the National Library of Spain and Seville’s Biblioteca Colombina, and it ranks first among university libraries. Acccording to the publication 'Catalogue of Incunabula in Spanish Libraries,' and the online collective catalogues of incunabula ISTC and GW, the collection has 93 editions unique to Spain and 5 that are unique in the world.
"While we will have to wait for a more in-depth view of the collection until after recataloguing is complete, this is clearly a rich collection originating from printing presses all over Europe, particularly Catalan, Spanish, Italian and French printers. In addition to books of a strictly religious nature, the collection covers a multitude of disciplines, including scientific, historical, philological and legal works.
"Practically all of the incunabula come from disentailed convents in the province of Barcelona, though they often bear the marks of individuals who had previously owned them, including humanists, jurists, doctors, students and merchants.
"Highlights include the legendary De Oratore, one of the first books printed in Italy and outside Germany. It came off the presses of Conrad Swenheym and Arnold Pannartz, German typographers established in Subiaco. Another highlight is the luxurious Breviariumprinted on parchment in Lleida in 1479 by fellow German Henricus Botel at the expense, the colophone tells us, of the cathedral bell tower. And the collection contains one of the first examples of Barcelona printing: Sal·lusti, Ciceró and Florus, printed in 1475 by the typographers Ioannes de Salsburga & Paulus de Constantia."
¶ From the famed Bibliotheca Bibliographica Breslaueriana (sale at Christies NY, 2005, lot 1255), with Bernard Breslauer's circled accession number in pencil on the front wrapper.