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Details & Cataloguing

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La Fayette, Marie Madeleine Pioche de la Vergne, comtesse de
LA PRINCESSE DE MONPENSIER. PARIS: LOUIS BILLAINE, 1662
8vo (141 x 79mm.), half-title (between preliminaries and start of text), woodcut emblem on title-page, remboitage of contemporary French red morocco gilt with arms of Louis XIV, spine richly gilt in compartments with lettering-piece, gilt dentelles, marbled endpapers, edges gilt, A1 soiled
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Literature

Tchemerzine 6:347

Catalogue Note

First edition, published anonymously. Separated from her husband in 1659, Mme de La Fayette settled in Paris, where she enjoyed the friendship of Madame Henriette, sister of Charles II of England and wife of the duc d'Orléans, brother of Louis XIV. One of Mme de La Fayette's principal romances, La Princesse de Montpensier constitutes a study of a political marriage void of love, which ends tragically.

The privilege states that it was originally granted to Augustin Courbé, and was then passed by him to Thomas Jolly and Billaine, who were associated with de Sercy. Copies of this first edition are found with imprints mentioning just one of each of these three printers; Jolly and Billaine use the same device on the title-page, whereas de Sercy uses his own.

Music, Continental and Russian Books and Manuscripts

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London