Amsterdam International Antiquarian Book & Map Fair

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Knuf Rare Books
18 rue de la Barrière
F-41800 Lavardin


Anita van Elferen


+33622732385 +33622732385



"The Jewel of Writing Masters"
PERLING, AMBROSIUS. Schat-Kamer van verscheyde geschriften ... Amsterdam, without date and printer (about 1740). 18 leaves (including title). Oblong 4to. Bound in marbled paper. Despite a clumsy attempt of calligraphy on the verso of the second leaf a fine copy. Third issue of the third book of Ambrosius Perling. This master calligrapher was born in Utrecht in 1657 or 1658 and became a citizen of Amsterdam in 1683. He kept a boarding school where calligraphy was taught and died in 1718. The first issues of the books written by Perling were published at his own expenses, the later ones were published (as in this case) by members of the family De Broen, engravers and publishers in Amsterdam. Ambrosius Perling reached a high fame during his lifetime as the last writing master who could hold in honor the calligraphic tradition of the Dutch republic. De Broen advertised his scripts as produced by "the jewel of the writing masters" and in fact the fame of Perling as unsurpassed calligrapher lasted well into the XIX century, both in Holland and abroad. Especially in England the influence of Perling was great. S. Morison in his introduction to the book of Heal on the history of calligraphy in England stresses the important rôle played by Perling alongside the Frenchmen Barbedor and Matherot. "While XVIth and early XVIIth century Italian handwriting had still been formed in a rather compressed and angular manner, the Dutch masters developed a broader and more rounded variant which, so far as writing line is concerned, was written at a wider sloping angle. This hand, which could be written more quickly, was imitated and developed further by a number of English masters..." (Croiset van Uchelen). Specimens of Perling's writing were reproduced by English masters as Snell, Champion and Bickham. Also in Spain Perling's influence was felt, as demonstrated by the insertion of a letter by him in the manual of Servidori (1787). This suite corresponds to the issue IIIb of this book in the Perling bibliography attempted by Croiset van Uchelen. The names of the engravers are G. and J. De Broen and the plates are disposed mostly according to Croiset's description, with two inversions. The first edition of the Schat-Kamer was published in 1685 and comprised only 17 leaves. [T. Croiset van Uchelen (The writing master Ambrosius Perling in: Quaerendo, 26(3)) pages 167-197; compare Bonacini 1401-1403, quoting respectively an edition without date which he did not personally see, the first edition and a later edition (dated by him as about 1724, but containing only 17 leaves) and Kat. Berlin 5031 for the first edition]
Exhibitor: Knuf Rare Books

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