Venice: Ex Typographia Balleoniana, 1754. Item #05459
A Fine Eighteenth Century Italian Book of Hours in its Original Red Morocco Binding
With Hand-Painted Gauffered Edges
[VENETIAN BINDING]. [BOOK OF HOURS]. Officium Beatae Mariae Virginis S. Pii V. Pontificis Maximi. Venetiis [Venice]: Ex Typographia Balleoniana, 1754.
Octavo (7 3/4 x 4 5/8 inches; 197 x 117 mm.). [i]-xxxxiv, -453, [3, indices] pp. Vignette engraved title-page and seven full page copperplate engravings in the text.
Full contemporary red morocco, covers elaborately decorated in gilt, spine with five raised bands decoratively gilt in compartments, decorative gilt board edges, marbled liners. The edges are gilt and exquisitely gauffered with small diamond shaped lozenges hand-painted in red. An exquisite example in exceptionally fine and untouched condition with just the smallest amount of light scuffing to the extremities. A remarkable survival from nearly two hundred and seventy years ago…
Books of Hours were bestsellers. They were the first text read across Europe by people at every level of literacy. These devotional books, containing a daily routine of prayers for the reader to follow, reached a huge audience, more than any previously written text. Children were taught to read with Books of Hours. Repeated daily, the passages found in these books, usually in Latin, were committed to heart. Prayers on death, plague, warfare, travel, and bad weather were all found in Books of Hours.
1. Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary (p. xxiv)
2. Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary (p. 80)
3. Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary (p. 150)
4. Office of the dead (p. 226)
5. Seven penitential psalms (p. 294)
6. Office of the holy cross (p. 334)
7. Office of the holy spirit (p. 342).