Title: Les essais Edition nouvelle, prise sur l'exemplaire trouve apres le deceds de l'autheur A Paris, chez Abel L'Angelier, 1598
Author: Michel de Montaigne; Marie de Gournay
Publisher: A Paris, chez Abel L'Angelier
An extremely scarce and rare 16th century edition of the Essays of Michel de Montaigne, being a collection of short subjective essays on various topics published in 1580 that were inspired by his studies in the classics, especially by the works of Plutarch and Lucretius. Montaigne's stated goal was to describe humans, including himself.
This is a second edition of the posthumous 1595 text, originally edited and published by Marie de Gournay, who was a woman of letters and “daughter of the alliance” of Montaigne. In this edition, de Gournay provides a new preface, retracting the apologetic one she had given in the 1595 edition, as well as a preface by Montaigne, which was revised by de Gournay, which had been saved in the first printing since his death in 1592. This is the last edition in which de Gournay took part, and subsequently presents the text of the Essays as if it were the final edition.
For some peculiar reason, a portrait of Montaigne from a later edition, engraved by Le Beau, has been attached. This work bears the ex libris inscription of the House of Raffin d'Hauterive.
Worldcat records only 3 existing copies of this edition in libraries.
One volume in octavo, (3)+1165 pages
On note of condition, this volume is in poor shape, with heavy wear and rubbing to the binding, with the front board being fully detached, and the back of the board holding on in a fragile manner. There is some worming at the foot margins, affecting a few letters on several pages. The title page is lacking, with a print facsimile having been provided. There are slight tears to pages 175-179, 453 and 469. There is foxing and staining throughout, with toning to the pages.