As mentioned in the preface, this Introduction makes generous use of the works of Grotius, and focuses on the period from 1550 to 1648, in particular the celebrated Dutch Revolt and the Peace of Westphalia. The provinces in question were part of the Spanish Empire until the first of the so-called ‘bourgeois revolutions.’ The work also covers the major religious changes of the time including the rise of Protestantism and Calvinism. Its authorship remains uncertain: it is attributed to a Le Jean by Barbier, and to a Déjean by Hoefer, following Adelung.
Among the arms on the cover are those of the Lestevenon family. Mattheus, heer van Berckenrode (1715-97) worked as a city-secretary in Amsterdam before being appointed Dutch Ambassador to France in 1748. He held this position for 44 years, witnessing all of the events of the French Revolution. Born into a powerful and wealthy regent family, he owned a large library, the sale of which offered almost 4700 lots in 1798. The present work was not among these lots, and very few of Lestevenon’s books seem to have been bound in morocco.
Four parts in 1 vol. 8vo (16.8 x 10.3 cm). pp. xl including title, 160; pp. viii inclunding title and half-title, 272; pp. viii including title and half-title, 154, ; occasional light foxing. Contemporary red morocco, large gilt coat of arms to both boards centres, spine with raised bands, gilt rampant lion and gilt lettering to compartments, all edges gilt, marbled endpapers, green bookmark; a bit rubbed.
Provenance: Mattheus Lestevenon van Berckenrode (Lestevenon’s gilt coat of arms to covers and Berckenrode’s lions to spine); Charles Baron de Selby (1755-1823, an English-Danish merchant, landowner and diplomat who worked in the Netherlands; armorial bookplate to upper pastedown with motto ‘Semper sapit suprema’); Librarie Ancienne & Moderne Henry Picard (bookplate to verso of upper fly leaf).
Barbier II, 962e; Hoefer XIII, 378; Ruggieri 1051 (similarly bound).
Stock ID: 86479