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The history of Guicciardini's description of the Low Countries

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[The description of the Low Countries by Lodovico Guicciardini, a Florentine merchant living in Antwerp, is regarded as the best source available for our knowledge of the Low Countries in the second half of the sixteenth century. The book first appeared in Italian in 1567 in an edition printed by the royal printer Willem Silvius in Antwerp. Later the same year Silvius also published a French translation. The second, greatly enlarged edition of the Italian text was printed in 1581 by Plantin, who had gone to considerable lengths to increase the amount of illustrative material. The second French edition followed in 1582. Due to the 'Decree of Abandonment' directed against Philip II and the interim reign of Anjou as sovereign there were difficulties with the portraits, some of which were either pasted in later or omitted entirely. Plantin's editions of Guicciardini may be regarded as expressions of the desire for unity and religious peace which was alive at this time. Plantin published a third Italian edition in 1588, three years after the fall of Antwerp. Following editions of Guicciardini's book appeared posthumously in the Northern Netherlands, in Amsterdam, the city which had taken over Antwerp's role as a centre of international trade. In 1609 the great publisher Cornelis Claesz produced a new edition of the French version with a text brought up to date by Petrus Montanus and additional illustrations. This was followed by editions produced by Willem Jansz (later called Blaeu): in 1612 the first Dutch edition in the old translation by Cornelis Kiliaen, and in 1613 the first Latin translation by Reinier Telle. Shortly after these folio editions appeared they were joined by an edition by Blaeu's competitors Jodocus Hondius, his sons, and Johannes Janssonius: this appeared in 1613 in 4° oblong format with new illustrations which went through many reprints. For his part Willem Jansz brought out a Latin Guicciardini in 1634, in 12° format and newly arranged geographically. Shortly after this, to commemorate the Peace of Munster Dr. Joan Blaeu published the famous book of towns in two parts, one about 'the king's Netherlands' and the other about the Republic. This major work was intended to supersede that by Guicciardini, but despite this reprints of the Italian's now outdated book continued to appear in various languages and formats until 1662., The description of the Low Countries by Lodovico Guicciardini, a Florentine merchant living in Antwerp, is regarded as the best source available for our knowledge of the Low Countries in the second half of the sixteenth century. The book first appeared in Italian in 1567 in an edition printed by the royal printer Willem Silvius in Antwerp. Later the same year Silvius also published a French translation. The second, greatly enlarged edition of the Italian text was printed in 1581 by Plantin, who had gone to considerable lengths to increase the amount of illustrative material. The second French edition followed in 1582. Due to the 'Decree of Abandonment' directed against Philip II and the interim reign of Anjou as sovereign there were difficulties with the portraits, some of which were either pasted in later or omitted entirely. Plantin's editions of Guicciardini may be regarded as expressions of the desire for unity and religious peace which was alive at this time. Plantin published a third Italian edition in 1588, three years after the fall of Antwerp. Following editions of Guicciardini's book appeared posthumously in the Northern Netherlands, in Amsterdam, the city which had taken over Antwerp's role as a centre of international trade. In 1609 the great publisher Cornelis Claesz produced a new edition of the French version with a text brought up to date by Petrus Montanus and additional illustrations. This was followed by editions produced by Willem Jansz (later called Blaeu): in 1612 the first Dutch edition in the old translation by Cornelis Kiliaen, and in 1613 the first Latin translation by Reinier Telle. Shortly after these folio editions appeared they were joined by an edition by Blaeu's competitors Jodocus Hondius, his sons, and Johannes Janssonius: this appeared in 1613 in 4° oblong format with new illustrations which went through many reprints. For his part Willem Jansz brought out a Latin Guicciardini in 1634, in 12° format and newly arranged geographically. Shortly after this, to commemorate the Peace of Munster Dr. Joan Blaeu published the famous book of towns in two parts, one about 'the king's Netherlands' and the other about the Republic. This major work was intended to supersede that by Guicciardini, but despite this reprints of the Italian's now outdated book continued to appear in various languages and formats until 1662.]

10.1163/157006982X00039
/content/journals/10.1163/157006982x00039
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1982-01-01
2016-12-06

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