Epitre au Marquis d'Argens; du 23 Septembre 1757
[Montagnola]: Officina Bodoni, . Limited Edition. Hardcover. One of 225 copies, unnumbered, folio size, 24 pp., in French. Near fine. Item #18010207
Written by Frederick the Great (1712-1786), king of Prussia from 1740 until his death, this letter contemplates suicide as an alternative to surrendering in battle; the king had just experienced a devastating defeat at Kolin during the Seven Years' War, as well as the death of his beloved mother (per Mardersteig). The epistle, written to his close friend Jean-Baptiste de Boyer, Marquis d'Argens (1704-1771), is a poignant examination of heartfelt and human desperation.
Printed by the Officinia Bodoni, a highly-regarded private press owned and operated by Giovanni Mardersteig (1892-1977), the book exhibits a gorgeous binding of vellum and paste-paper, with intricate patterns carved into the deep blue paper; the Press was known for its superb standard in printing and bookmaking, often doing commission work for other publishers, such as the Limited Editions Club and Faber and Faber.
___DESCRIPTION: Quarter vellum with blue paste-paper boards, gilt lettering on the spine, fore- and bottom edges uncut, title page in red and black, some signatures unopened; Bodoni Catania types, Fabriano handmade paper, folio size (12" by 8.5"), pagination: [1-2] 3-22  [1 colophon], one of 225 copies, unnumbered. Please note the text is in French. Bookseller's ticket on the rear paste-down, from Paul Elder & Co., San Francisco. Housed in a slipcase covered in orange paper.
___CONDITION: Volume is near fine, with clean boards, straight corners, a strong, square text block with solid hinges, the interior is clean and bright, and entirely free of prior owner markings; a bare hint of rubbing to the corners, light rubbing to the bottom edges of the boards, and a few rubbed spots to the pastepaper (we believe all of this simply from the slipcase being a tad too small), else fine. The slipcase is near fine, strong and sturdy, clean but for the hint of a stray mark or two, some light rubbing to the extremities and light sunning to the edges and spine.
___CITATION: Mardersteig no. 10.
___POSTAGE: International customers, please note that additional postage may apply as the standard does not always cover costs; please inquire for details.
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