by POLYBIUS (c. 200-c. 118 BCE) & Pierre DU RYER (1606-1658).
Paris:: Augustin Courbé. 1655. hardcover. 2 parts in 1. Tall 4to. [viii], 256, 259-634, , 635-728, 729-791,. [1 blank],  [lacks final blank, as the final leaf should be 5M4]. pp. 2 title-pages each with an engraved vignette by Daret featuring. four cupids and the banner Curvata Resurgo [the second vignette. faces p. 634]. Title printed in red and black, large woodcut initial. letters, head and tail pieces, index. Contemporary gilt-stamped full. calf with upper and lower cover gilt devise showing two griffins. segreant flanking a centered trio of turned-up crescents, and a royal. crown above, six raised bands, joints cracked, spine leather mostly. missing, gilt-stamped spine label loose. Theological Institute of. Connecticut blind-stamps to first and last few pages. Good.. FIRST EDITION of Du Ryers French translation of Polybius Histoires, with initials of the printer on the title A.C. for Augustin Courbé. Polybius was a Greek Hellenistic historian widely revered for his extensive, detailed, and enlightening history of the rise of the Roman Republic from 264-146 BCE (Boyd, p. 482). Polybius Histories were originally written in 40 volumes, only the first five of which are extant in their entirety. The bulk of the work is passed down to us through collections of excerpts kept in libraries in Byzantium, for the most part. The arrival of texts of Polybius in the west did not begin until the 15th century AD. As an interesting footnote to Polybius appearance in the 15th century, there is an argument made by J. H. Hexter as to the appearance of Polybius in Machiavelli, especially the section that survives in Book 6, the section which covers the description of the Roman constitution as a mixed constitution. The work survives from this period in the West in the works of such renowned authors as Montesquieu and others, and is in part the basis for the theory of the United States Constitution (Wikip.). Du Ryer was a French dramatist best known for his comedies and 1646 masterpiece, Scévole. REFERENCES: Kelly Boyd, Encyclopedia of Historians and Historical Writing, 1999, p. 482; BM, STC French, 1601-1700, p.1271; Edward Harley Oxford (Earl of), Catalogus bibliothecae Harleianae: in locos communes..., Vol. III, 1744, p.243; Jonathan Mallinson, Enlightenment and Tradition: Women's Studies : Montesquieu, (2007), p.315; G. E. Parfitt, Linfluence française dans les oeuvres de Fielding et dans le théâtre anglais contemporain de ses comedies, (1928), p. 146, no. 610. Not in Brunet. . 3 (Inventory #: LV2143)
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