1508] · [colophon: Auguste
The first edition of this survey of "the diverse peoples and religions of the world." Stamler, a parish priest in Kissingen, Bavaria, studies the religions of the Turks, Saracens, Tartars, and Jews via the conceit of a => dramatic dialogue. Marginal notes point out the various heresies of those systems of beliefs — that is, heresies as defined by European Catholicism. The work was edited by Wolfgang Aittinger and its title-page is a full-block xylograph by Hans Burgkmair, which he has signed with his initials in the block's lower righthand corner. Oddly, this is printed again on the verso of the title-page, thus producing a double title-page.
Another curious aspect of this work is found in the prefatory letter from the author to Jacob Locher, dated 1506 and found on the verso of leaf aiii. => Stamler specifically mentions Columbus and Vespucci and the world's debt to them: "De insulis aut inuentes mention nullã facio: Sed Cristoferi Colom erund inutoris et Alberici Vespucii de orbe moderno inuento (quibus tas nostra potissimú debet) quos tibi presentibus tractatulos mitto conspicias" — our free translation: "I do not make mention of the newly discovered islands: However, I send you [copies] of the little treatises of Christopher Columbus and Albert Vespucci (to whom our age is greatly indebted) on the newly discovered world." Where are the Stamler–Locher copies of those very rare books today?
Harrisse, Bibliotheca Americana Vetustissima, 51 ("extremely rare"); Alden & Landis 508/19; Sabin 90127; Maggs, Bibl. Amer., 22; Church 26; Shaaber S522; VD16 S8527. Late 20th–century quarter calf, old style: Boards covered with handsome waste paper from an edition of Eusebius, spine with gilt-beaded raised bands and blind ruling above and below each extending onto covers, terminating in blind-tooled trefoils. Title-leaf torn with loss in the lower outside corner (perhaps one sixth of the leaf), restored and with missing image supplied in excellent pen and ink facsimile; one line on one page closely shaved, with loss of parts of all its letters and two words. Some old underlining and a few marginal words; dedication with final printed line repeated in an early inked hand. Variable soiling; light waterstaining and other stains here and there, most noticeable on early and late leaves. An agreeable copy of an Americanist's rarity, priced with its faults stressed more than its considerable charms. (Inventory #: 38394)