La Divina Commedia - Dante Alighieri, Henry F. Cary (translator), Sandro Boticelli (illustrator) 1928 - The Nonesuch Press, London - Limited edition of 1475 copies of which this is number 442. ‘Midway upon the journey of our life I found myself in a dark wood, where the right of way was lost.’ – Hell.

To run over better waters the little vessel of my genius now hoists her sails, as she leaves behind her a sea so cruel.’ – Purgatory.

In the heaven which most of His light I have been, and have seen things which he who descends from there above neither knows how nor has power to recount.’ – Paradise.

A gorgeous large limited edition of this medieval epic, combining Botticelli’s 42 sepia drawings (34 on double sheet, 8 on single sheet) with Dante’s
Divina Commedia in both Italian and English. Showing only a modicum of the usual spine fading to which this vellum is notoriously prone, and in the original matching leather trimmed and felt lined slipcase.

Reportedly based on Dante’s experiences during his banishment from Florence, this reinterpretation of Christian themes had a seminal influence on philosophy, literature, and art, inspiring Chaucer, John Milton, Salvadore Dali, and T.S. Eliot, among many others.

‘Dante and Botticelli represented the Florence of two very different generations. No Renaissance artist contemplated the verities of Christianity with a depper faith. Botticelli’s drawings are so much more than a commentary on, or a two-dimensional summation of, the
Divina Commedia. They are breathtakingly beautiful. And in realising his project, Botticelli refined his own mysticisim and thus anticipated the intense lyricism of his final years’ – Francis Russell on the 2001 Botticelli exhibition at the Royal Academy (Country Life).
More Details

Price: HK$ 19,000