FLORENTINE HISTORIE. Written in the Italian Tongue by Nicholo Machiavelli Citizen and Secretarie of and Translated Into English by T. B. Esquire

Machiavelli Nicholo

Published by London by Thomas Creede for William Ponsonby 1595, 1595
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RARE FIRST EDITION in English of this important work. With an elaborate wood-engraved historiated border on the title-page and with handsome woodcut initials and head- and tail-pieces throughout. Folio in sixes, in later full dark paneled calf designed to period style, the spine with tall raised bands ruled in blind, with a single red morocco label gilt lettered and ruled, the original front black retained. xii, 222 pp. A fine, handsome, tight, clean and very well preserved copy of the very rare first printing in English. The text-block fine, with only very minor mellowing or evidence age, the paper crisp, unpressed and unwashed, the binding in excellent condition. FIRST EDITION IN ENGLISH OF MACHIAVELLI'S GREAT CHRONICLE OF FLORENTINE AFFAIRS, THE "FIRST EXAMPLE OF A NATIONAL BIOGRAPHY" - Britannica. The work is significant in the history of political, diplomatic, philosophical and intellectual thought. This printing precedes the first English edition of "The Prince" by 45 years. THE HISTORY OF FLORENCE was Machiavelli's last work. Though written at the command of the Pope, who, as the head of the Medici family, was also ruler of Florence, the book treats the characters of that illustrious house with fairness and impartiality. And although it is primarily an historical work, Machiavelli was writing from a political perspective and "this gives the work its special character." [E.B.] The history is not a straight account of historical facts but rather a critique of the way Florentine history had been told up until that time. This is the "first example in Italian literature of a national biography, the first attempt in any literature to trace the vicissitudes of a people ‘s life in their logical sequence, deducing each successive phase from passions or necessities inherent in preceding circumstances, reasoning upon them from general principles and inferring corollaries from the conduct of the future." [E.B.] The history contains speeches related in the classical style but generally, Machiavelli’s style breaks away from the formal exercise of the times and reveals concise, direct and energetic prose. Machiavelli intended to continue the work beyond Lorenzo de Medici, but his death left that task to Guicciardini. Bookseller Inventory # 25976

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Bibliographic Details

Title: FLORENTINE HISTORIE. Written in the Italian ...

Publisher: London by Thomas Creede for William Ponsonby 1595

Publication Date: 1595

Binding: Hardcover

Edition: 1st Edition

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