L’osservatore Fiorentino sugli edifizi della sua patria. Terza edizione eseguita sopra quella del 1797, riordinata e compiuta dall’autore, coll’aggiunta di varie annotazioni del Professore Giuseppe del Rosso R.consultore architetto, ascritto à piu’ distinte societa’ di scienze, e belle arti.
Firenze, Gaspero Ricci 1821.
8vo. 8 vols bound in 4. (6) + 219 + (5)pp, large engraved folding plan of Florence, (2) engraved plates; 219 + (3)pp, 2 engraved plates (1 folding); 217 + (3)pp, 2 engraved plates; 239 + (3)pp, 2 engraved plates; 219 + (1)pp, 2 engraved plates; 206pp, 2 folding engraved plates; 204pp, 2 engraved plates; 208 + (4)pp, with (2) unnumbered pp between p.140 and p.141, 2 engraved plates. The set is uniformly bound in contemporary quarter vellum, marbled boards. Early nineteenth century ink ownership inscriptions of Antonio Forli at foot of each title leaf. Signatures 1 (pp 1-16), 4 (pp 49-64), and 14 (pp 209-19 +(5)) of first volume are printed on an inferior paper stock, and are consequently browned. A few old stains in upper and lower blank margins, but generally in good, fresh, unrestored condition.
Third, updated and best edition of L’Osservatore Fiorentino, a compilation by Marco Lastri (1731-1811), a scholarly Roman Catholic priest, first published in 1776-8 and reissued in an enlarged eight-volume edition in 1797-9, without his name being given as its author on either occasion. Lastri’s book, arranged in separate sections, each dealing with a different quarter of the city of Florence, provides descriptions of each of the city’s most notable buildings and public spaces, with notes on the individuals and historical events associated with them, and is an indispensable source of information on all aspects of Florentine life. By 1821 Lastri had been dead for ten years, and the value of the present edition lies in the fact that its publisher recruited Giuseppe del Rosso (1760-1831), Florence’s most prominent architect in the first quarter of the nineteenth century, to review Lastri’s text, and what Del Rosso did was to supply numerous necessary corrections in new footnotes, each marked with an asterisk. Some of these resulted from the closure of the city’s religious institutions during the Napoleonic era and their conversion to other uses, while others stemmed from the fact that Del Rosso had a better specialist knowledge than Lastri of aspects of Florence’s past and recent architectural history. Another useful feature of this edition, again issued without Lastri’s name on its title leaves, is that it does contain the text of an eulogy delivered in his memory which records the facts of Lastri’s career and the breadth of his intellectual interests (vol.VIII, pp 129-140). Cicognara 4213 (first edition, wrongly dated there 1766); not in BAL Cat.