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“LA PRIMA GRANDE GUIDA DI ROMA”—SCHLOSSER
TITI, Filippo. Studio di Pittura, Scoltura et Architettura Nelle Chiese di Roma... Rome, Mancini, 1674.
12mo [13.25 x 7 cm], (12) ff., 477 pp. Bound in contemporary stiff vellum. Scored ownership inscription on title. Minor foxing along right edge of title and on the occasional leaf, but generally a clean, fine copy.
$1,850 First edition of this important pocket guide to the art and architecture of Rome, considered the first in the long tradition of such guides addressed to the secular tourist rather than the religious pilgrim. Of great interest to the historian of Baroque art and architecture for providing a descriptive inventory of the contents of over 240 churches and monasteries, and for containing information relevant to attribution, building history, patronage and contemporary taste—what was considered a “must see” in the earliest years of the Grand Tour.
The guide is organized from the standpoint of geographical convenience rather than the requirements of devotion, beginning naturally with the Vatican and proceeding according to the various gates of the city. In scope, the entries range from a high of 26 pages (for the Vatican) to a page or less, and although the author’s taste is revealed by what he chooses to include or not, his comments tend to the factual.
A true pocket guide, the work enjoyed considerable success and was frequently reprinted, both in authorized and unauthorized editions. According to Schlosser it remained the standard guide to Rome into the 18th century.
* Rossetti G-860; Cicognara 3891; Schudt 280; Schlosser, pp. 544, 600; Lattanzi, “La prima grande vera guida di Roma,” in Prinzi, ed., Filippo Titi, Descrizone delle pitture (1978), pp. 5-10; Contardi/Romano (critical ed. 1987); not in Kissner sale.
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