LA PLACE, Pierre de (1520-1572) - SERRES, Jean de (1540-1598). Commentariorum de statu religionis et reipublicae in regno Galliae,. Regibus Henrico Secundo. Francesco Secundo, &, Carolo Nono. [Geneva?] Excusum Anno Salutis, 1572.
2 parts in one volume. 8vo., (7 x 4 inches). Sectional title-page to Part II. Engraved head-pieces and initials (some insignificant worming to preliminaries and one or two pale marginal stains). Contemporary German bleached pigskin over bevelled boards, each panel decorated in blind with borders of fine heads in medallion roll-tools and central portrait panels of Martin Luther on the front cover and Melanchthon on the lower cover, after portraits by Lucas Cranach the Elder, signed V.K. and each with a Latin motto beneath, brass catches, remains of clasps, all edges gilt and gauffered (some minor worming and light soiling).
Provenance: Near contemporary textual underscoring.
The first part of Jean de Serres' monumental chronicle of the Reformation and commentary on the reigns of the French Kings during the Wars of Religion is a translation of Pierre La Place's "Commentaires de l'estat de la religion" first published in Paris in 1565 (Pierre La Place was murdered after escaping the St. Bartholomew Day massacre). The subsequent parts are by de Serres and were first published in 1571, and extended to twelve parts. Jean de Serres had studied theology under Calvin and Beza and was initially a harsh critic of the Catholicism, and Jesuits in particular, and his series of "Commentariorum de statu religionis." remained on the Vatican's "Index Librorum Prohibitorum" until 1966. Later in his life de Serres advocated reconciliation and was honoured by King Henry IV of France as his Royal Historian in 1596. Catalogued by Kate Hunter