Publications of the Royal Printing Works
Urbanus VIII (1568-1644).
Maphaei S.R.E card. Barberini nunc Urbani papae VIII. Poemata. — Parisiis [Paris] : e Typographia regia, 1642.
2° (243 х 387). The brown leather binding with gold embossing. Louis XIII's super ex libris — the King's coat of arms is placed on the front and back covers, the fleurs-de-lis are on the spine (is established by: OHR, pl. 2494, no.7 — the reference books attribute this super ex libris to Louis XIV, but chronologically this is the reign of Louis XIII).
Provenance: Załuski, Józef Andrzej (1702-1774) (characteristic notes on the title page).
Shelf mark: 6.2c.1.19
The book contains Latin poems and hymns (Poemata), as well as Italian sonnets and odes, composed by Cardinal Maffeo Barberini. By the time of publication in 1642, this cardinal had been Pope for almost twenty years under the name Urban VIII. Не was famous for his patronage of artists and poets, his mercy towards the Indians of South America (he forbade the enslavement of natives), the inquisition of Galileo, as well as outrageous corruption and overwhelming wastefulness. The fact of the publication of the works of the pontiff by the Royal Printing Works had political underpinnings: at that time there was the Thirty Years' War going on, and the main allies of France were Protestants, and the enemies were Catholics. Thus, the appearance of the pope's literary heritage was a political gesture that had to show the fidelity of the French kingdom to Catholic dogma, despite political differences.
Horatius Flaccus, Quintus (65-8 BC).
Quinti Horatii Flacci Opera. — Parisiis [Paris] : e Typographia regia, 1642.
2° (256 х 388 mm). A red marocain binding with gold embossing. Louis XIV's super ex libris(XIII) — the King's coat of arms is placed on the front and back covers, the fleurs-de-lis are on the spine (is established by: OHR, pl. 2494, no.7 — reference books attributed this super ex libris to Louis XIV, but chronologically this is the reign of Louis XIII).
Provenance: Suchtelen, Pieter (1751-1836) (armorial engraved bookplate).
Shelf mark: 7.67.1b.2
The binding with the royal super ex libris hides a complete collection of works by the Latin poet Quintus of Horatius Flaccus, published by the Royal Printing Works. Horace (65-8 BC) was a model writer for many early New Age literary men and now is considered one of the most published authors of his era. Horace wrote during the early Augustus' reign in Rome, and the poet was among the confidants of the emperor. Several his poems are devoted to Augustus and imperial family members, also the emperor became his heir. European sovereigns of the era of emerging absolutism, including Louis XIII, wished their reign to be associated with the "golden age" of Emperor Augustus. This promoted the publication of Horace's poetry in the Royal Printing Works.