Limited to 50 Copies

Catalogue des Livres rares et précieux de la Bibliothéque de M. de Wlassoff…suivi d’une Description sommaire de ses Gravures, Tableaux, Pierres gravées et Bronzes. [Compiled by Vlassov & G. Le Cointe de Laveau].

x, 312, 52, [1] pp., one leaf of errata. 8vo, cont. calf (one corner quite bumped, some rubbing), double gilt fillet round sides, spine decorated in gilt, green leather lettering piece on spine. Moscow: A. Semen, 1821.

“Deuxiéme Édition,” much enlarged, and limited to 50 copies (this is one of 40 copies in octavo on Hollande paper; there were another ten copies in quarto on English “vellum” paper) of the privately printed catalogue of illuminated manuscripts, books, prints, paintings, engraved gems, and bronze sculptures in the collection of Wlassoff (1777-1825), Chamberlain of the Czar. Wlassoff was one of the most important collectors of books, illuminated manuscripts, and art in Russia in the first quarter of the 19th century. Many of his paintings came from the Galitzin and Golovkin collections, and his superb collection of prints — the result of many years of collecting in Russia, France, and Switzerland — was reputed to be one of Russia’s finest.

Our second edition — the first edition appeared in 1819 — includes Wlassoff’s recent acquisitions of more than 100 books — mostly classical texts purchased at the Mac-Carthy-Reagh sale — and other 15th-century books along with illuminated manuscripts, important Italian paintings, engravings, and engraved gems. Pages 147-214 provide a detailed description of the prints, arranged alphabetically. Pages 215-312 describe the paintings, cameos, marble sculptures and sculptures in bronze; the supplement of 52 pages describes additions to all sections.

In the “Préface,” Wlassoff describes his book collection not simply as a library (“bibliothèque”) but as a choice selection of works representative of the art of printing from its invention to the present, with specimens by Jenson, Aldus, the Elsevirs, Didots, and others.

Following Wlassoff’s death in 1825, a portion of his collection was sold at auction (“loterie”) in Moscow in 1826. A further portion was sold in 1830.

Nice copy.

❧ Lugt, Marques, 2706.

Price: $7,500.00

Item ID: 6422