Under the patronage of Frederick the Great, Algarotti’s life and times, 1770


Domenico Michelessi: Memorie intorno alla vita ed agli scritti del Conte Francesco Algarotti (…). With engravings by Giovanni Volpato. Venice: Pasquali 1770

[Francesco Algarotti], Domenico Michelessi: Memorie intorno alla vita ed agli scritti del Conte Francesco Algarotti, ciambellano di S. M. il Re di Prussia e cavalier del Merito ec. With 2 copper engraved pictorial headpieces and initials by Giovanni Volpato. Venice: Giambatista Pasquali 1770.

4to. CXIX [1] pages (incl. printed title). Copper engraving and letterpress, bound in contemporary marbled calf over boards, with gilt ornamental title and filleting on spine and boards resp., as well as marbled end papers and gilt edges.

First edition of this biography of Francesco Algarotti (1712-64), a poet, art critic, philosopher, diplomat and successful networker.

Subject: Algarotti enjoyed the patronage of the Frederick the Great, who made him a count of Prussia, awarded him the order »Pour le mérite« and had a monument erected to him on the Campo Santo in Pisa. Present work is dedicated in print to the Prussian king by Michelessi, Algarotti's biographer. On behalf of the Elector of Saxony Algarotti also purchased paintings. Michelessi.

Condition: Frontispiece with engraved portrait and first title with pinter's emblem missing, like in some other located copies with WorldCat and KVK. Leather of Cover with partly restored faults, gilt filleting in parts chipped off; the gorgeously contemporary marbled end paper with some little staining at margins; some pages finger-stained, sheets p-p4 with minor water-staining.

Provenance: Front fly leaf verso with 2 hand-written owner's 18th or 19th ct. owner's signature, one reads „Paul Jankowsky“.

Reference: Krieger, Cicogna 2622; See. Wurzbach I/13; not in Graesse and Brunet.