Item #329 Bellum per Desyderium Erasmum Roterdamum. Desiderius Erasmus.
Erasmus’ Manifesto Against War

Bellum per Desyderium Erasmum Roterdamum.

Parisiis (Paris): Apud Simonem Colinaeum (Simon de Colines), 1530. Title within elaborate woodcut border, with initials S.D.C. and Geoffroy Tory’s Lorraine cross. Reprint of the printer's edition of 1525. First printed by Johann Froben in 1517. Papered spine. (8º) a–c8 (c8 blank); 23, (1 blank) leaves. In fine condition.

Erasmus’ famous pacifist text on the adage “dulce bellum inexpertis" (war is sweet to those who have not tried it). It was first published in the revised and enlarged edition of “Adages”, called “Proverbiorum chiliades" (1515, Basel; Froben) and published separately in 1517, also by Froben.

“Bellum" is the first essay where Erasmus speaks of Jews contemporary to him, praises them along with the Turks and the pagans, as well as various peoples of Europe, Asia and Africa for their virtuous living. He writes: “When has the sword, murder, arson, plundering turned conquered people into good Christians?! Openly to be a Turk or a Jew is lesser evil than to pretend to be a Christian. I prefer a real Turk to a false Christian.”

The printer Simon de Colines (1480–1546) is most notable for his 1525 “Grandes Heures de Simon de Colines”, the illustrator was the same Geoffroy Tory (1480–1533) who made the design of the woodcut border of this book.

[Bibl.: Markish, Shimon: Erasmus and the Jews. Chicago. University of Chicago Press, 1986.; Johnson, Carina L.: Cultural hierarchy in sixteenth-century Europe. The Ottomans and Mexicans. Cambridge; New York. Cambridge University Press, 2011.; Olin, John C.: Six essays on Erasmus and a Translation of Erasmus' Letter to Carondelet, 1523. New York. Fordham University Press, 1979.]

Moreau III 2074.


Price: €2,500.00

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