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A: Roma, Lazio, Italy

Ignacio López de Loyola Issues Exercitia Spiritualia

This copy of the first edition of Exercitia Spiritualia sold at Christie's in London on July 12, 2017 for 299,000 GBP 
This copy of the first edition of Exercitia Spiritualia sold at Christie's in London on July 12, 2017 for 299,000 GBP 

Ignacio López de Loyola (Ignatius of Loyola), Superior-General of the Society of Jesus, which he had founded in 1540, published Exercitia spiritualia in Rome at the press of Antonio Blado.

"St. Ignatius of Loyola was born Inigo Lopez de Recalde [sic], a member of a noble Basque family in the province of Guipuzcoa in Spain. In his youth he led the normal life of his class, but during his convalescence after having been wounded fighting the French at Pamplona in 1521, he decided to do penance for his sins. In 1522 to went first to Monserrat and then to the neighbouring Manresa where during a retreat lasting from March 1522 to Febuary 1523 he first sketched out his 'Exercises'. After a pilgirmage to Jerusalem, he returned in 1523 to study for the priesthood, mainly in Paris and Rome, but also visiting England in 1530. His ideas were disappproved by the several religious orders with whom he studied, but eventually he was ordained in 1537. During this period disciples had gathered round him, and were formed by Ignatius into an informal association, which he called the 'Company of Jesus'. They moved to Rome, and after some difficulties Pope Paul II in 1540 approved this new community. The Society of Jesus was formally established with Ignatius as its first General. . . ." (Carter & Muir, Printing and the Mind of Man [1967] no. 74).

The first edition of Ignatius of Loyola's book is extremely rare. Christie's had this to say about the Richard Green copy when they sold it for the second time on July 12, 2017 for 299,000 GBP:

"Prior to this copy coming to the market, the last first edition sold at auction was the Harmsworth copy (Sotheby's, December 16 1947, lot 946) described as stained throughout and repaired (ABPC). Exceedingly rare first edition: only nine other copies held in institutions, of which three are located in US libraries: Library of Congress; Glenson Library (San Francisco); and Loyola University Chicago, and six copies in Europe: the Vatican, the Biblioteca Nazionale and the Biblioteca Corsiniana in Roma, The British Library, The French Bibliotheque Nationale and the Biblioteca Publica in Toledo. "

The Richard Green copy had several condition problems as Christie's enumerated in their description:

"Octavo (155 x 107mm). Without final blank P4 (title supplied from another copy and with a few repairs, C6-8, I7-8 and O5 with some pale staining and associated repairs in outer margins, pale marginal stain in quire L, first and last leaves lightly soiled). A remboîtage binding of contemporary vellum (a few repairs on extremities, lightly soiled and rubbed). Provenance: Jesuit College in Piacenza (inscription on title) -- 'Io[annis] Bapt[ist]e Manfredini' (inscription on A2r) -- Jesuit College in Reggio (inscription on A2r) -- Adam de Invidia, a papal notary whose name appears on a contract involving Benvenuto Celli in 1522 (inscription on A4v) -- Richard Green (sold at Christie’s New York in December 2014, lot 227)."

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