One of a kind edition cited by Brunet illustrated with dozens of high quality copper engravings representing monuments and cities of the Holy Land.
Brunet, V, 1543.
It contains an original dedication by Jean Zuallart “A très Noble et illustre seigneur de Mérode” (to the noble and illustrious lord of Mérode) dated August 1st 1607.
Jean Zuallart originated from Ath in the Hainaut. He was in charge of travelling with Philippe de Mérolde, baron of Frentzen, throughout Italy and Germany. He tells us that, in 1585, as he stayed in Rome with him, Mérolde asked him to promise to go alongside him wherever his steps may lead. Zuallart kept his word and the baron asked him to travel to the Holy Land with him. After a few objections, Zuallart agreed to go with his ward and, in order to get as much from this trip as possible, he learnt to draw for four months. On June 29th 1586, Zuallart and Mérode went on their way with two clergymen, Domenico Danesi, the Pope’s chapelain, Marin van den Zande, canon of Cambray, and other people. After berthing in Tripoli, the travelers disembarked in Jaffa on august 25th: they visited Jerusalem and Bethlehem; on September 9th they headed back to Europe and arrived in the port of Venice on November 25th.
We have from Zuallart: Devotissimo viaggio di Gerusalemme, Rome, 1587, in-8, fig. ; ibid., 1595. « I was asked and had to translate it into our common language, more walloon and coarse than French ». This version is entitled Très-dévot voyage de Jérusalem, avecq les figures des lieux saints, et plusieurs autres tirées au naturel, Antwerp, 1606, 4to. It contains a lot that the others don’t contain. It was reprinted in the same city in 1608 and in 1626. The author complains in the introduction that Castela, a religious from Toulouse, had in part copied his Italian account and counterfeited a few figures. We can thus find them in Cotovic’s travel and in others.
Precious copy owned by Jean-Baptiste Colbert (1619-1683), Louis XIV’s minister of finances.
Colbert’s library was huge but his travel books are rare. the ones written about Palestine became unobtainable.
This copy, unwashed, bears on the title-page the contemporary mention “Bibliotheca Colbertinae” handwritten by Baluze, his librarian.
The copy, bound in night blue morocco, comes from the libraries of:
- Jean-Baptiste Colbert,
- His oldest son, the marquis de Seignelay, Naval Minister
- Jacques-Nicolas Colbert, archbishop of Rouen,
- Charles Eleonor Colbert.
- Sidney Graves Hamilton, with ex libris.
Brunet mentions the bid on a copy similar to this one sold for 23,50 Fr in 1839, a significant amount of money at the time.
We could locate only 5 copies among International public Institutions: British Library, Koninklijke Bibliothek, Universiteit Leiden, Universiteit Maastricht, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek.