Historia da portentosa vida de S. Genoveva, Princesa de Brabante, composta na lingua franceza, &...

Historia da portentosa vida de S. Genoveva, Princesa de Brabante, composta na lingua franceza, & alemãa pelo Senhor de Ceriziers, vertida no idioma castelhano por Dom Joseph Ximenes de Castilho, e traduzida em portuguez pelo Padre Manoel de Coimbra.

CERIZIERS [or Cerisiers], [René] de.

Published by Lisbon, Na Officina Real Deslandesiana, 1712., 1712
From Richard C. Ramer Old and Rare Books (New York, NY, U.S.A.)

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8°, contemporary red calf, elaborately gilt with central diamond-and-fan design at corners, flat spine richly gilt (joints and hinges going, some rubbing and darkening). Woodcut vignette on title page. Woodcut tailpiece. Woodcut and typographical headpieces. Woodcut initial. Last quire has heavy dampstains, not affecting legibility. Overall in good condition. Elegantly penned ink inscription on front flyleaf: "Mlle. Arcangela Engracia em 20 de Maio 1812." Early monogram stamp in blank area of title page ("FMP"). (6 ll.), 157 pp. *** First Edition in Portuguese? We have seen references to editions of Brussels, 1717, and Lisbon, 1721, 1732, 1737, 1758, and 1815. However, the licenses date to 1699, and since this seems to have been the sort of book that was read to pieces, possibly earlier editions in Portuguese will eventually surface.Genevieve of Brabant is a heroine of medieval legend: a chaste wife repudiated by her husband the Count Palatine Siegfried of Treves. She lived with her son in a cave for six years, until accidentally found by her husband, who had meanwhile discovered that the accusation of adultery was false and was eager to restore her to her rightful position. The story first became popular in Ceriziers' L'Innocence reconnue, ou vie de Sainte Genevieve de Brabant, 1638, of which this is a translation. Genevieve's story remained a common subject for German dramas into the nineteenth century and even later: Puccini's Suor Angelica is said to be based on it. Several features seem to be unique to the Portuguese text. The preliminary leaves include a 5-page prologo in which Fr. Manoel de Coimbra discusses the sources for the Genevieve story (one of the licenses elaborates these even further) and there is an unsigned sonnet in Spanish "De hum amigo ao Author." The final page offers an acrostic poem on "Genoveva."René de Ceriziers (1603-Paris, 1662) entered the Society of Jesus in 1622, teaching literature and philosophy at various Jesuit colleges. He left the Order in 1641 to take a position as chaplain to the Duke of Orléans, and then to Louis XIV. Kenny notes, "He was a clerical courtier: his was a worldly and powerful milieu, not an ascetic one. Writing from the 1630s onwards, he became well-known as a prolific and successful author of vernacular histories (secular and ecclesiastical) and fictions and as a translator of St Augustine. Accomodating secular to religious culture, he was adept at moulding church history to the narrative genres which sold well at the time, the romance and novella: his life of St Genevieve was a much translated bestseller which was still read in the nineteenth century." Among his other notable works are Heureux Commencements de la France chrétienne sous l'apôtre de nos rois saint Rémy, 1633, and Réflexions chrétiennes et politiques sur la vie des rois de France, 1633.This version was translated from German to Spanish by José Ximenes de Castillo, and from Spanish to Portuguese by Padre Manoel de Coimbra, a native of the Villa de Óbidos who served at the Igreja da Magdalena in Lisbon. Barbosa Machado notes that P. Manoel spent most of his life translating spiritually uplifting works from other languages. He died at age 80 in Lisbon.*** Barbosa Machado III, 223-4: citing only this 1712 edition. Gonçalves Rodrigues, A tradução em Portugal, 458: calling for xvi preliminary pp. (perhaps had never seen a copy?). On Manoel de Coimbra, see Innocêncio V, 398-9: this work not cited. Not located in Xavier da Cunha, Impressões deslandesianas. Not located in Coimbra, Miscelâneas. On Ceriziers, see Neil Kenny, The Uses of Curiosity in Early Modern France and Germany (2004), p. 144 (extensive discussion of the author's Holy Curiosity, or Curious Questions on the Main Articles of Faith, Religious Mysteries, and Church Ceremonies, 1643, pp. 145-50). Not located in Porbase, which lists several later Portuguese editions, each exist in only 1-2 copies, all at the Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal: Brussels, 171. Bookseller Inventory # 24413

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Historia da portentosa vida de S. Genoveva, ...

Publisher: Lisbon, Na Officina Real Deslandesiana, 1712.

Publication Date: 1712

Binding: Hardcover

Edition: 1st Edition

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