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Petrarca, Il Petrarcha con La Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo. Al Magn

Petrarca, Franciscus [Petrarch, Francesco] / Gesualdo, Andrea / Morton, Albertus / Wotton, Henry / Fratelli Nicolini da Sabio. Il Petrarcha con La Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo / I Trionfi del Petrarcha con la Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo da Traetto. [Venetia], Domenico Giglio, 1553. 8°. 2 parti in 1 vol. (22), 346, (72) pp. with two woodcut - titlepages and 6 woodcuts within the "Trionfi", all by Fratelli Nicolini da Sabio. Hardcover / Modern full Morocco. The poetry of Petrarch for his beloved Laura, accompanied by the commentary of Gesualdo in an edition of 1553 which was presented as an early seventeenth century diplomatic gift by the assistant to the British Ambassador in Venice Sir Henry Wotton, Sir Albertus Morton. The book has recently been recased in blind crushed crimson morocco with new endpapers. There is some staining to the last few leaves and some staining to the last few gatherings of the volume. The evidence of the diplomatic gift is found in the 17 line formal Italian gift inscription opposite the engraved title page, written and signed by Sir Albertus Morton, Secretary (and nephew) to Sir Henry Wotton. The signed inscription dedicates the book to an apparently unnamed dedicatee in laudatory and conventional terms: 'Eccellentissimo Signore mio, Padrone Collendissimo Vivendo in me sempre il medesimo ardore di farmi conoscere per servitore dell'Eccellenza vostra, non perciò ho avuto animo in questo concorso di doni che le vengon fatti, di presentarmile inanzi. Ma hora non posso più ritenere tal mio disiderio che non le metta in cospetto questi due forestieri, sapendo quanto l'Eccellenza vostra sia fautrice di vertuosi et di pellegrini, et maggiormente sarà di questi, per venir essi banditi dalla patria loro. La nobiltà, dunque, dell'animo suo degnerà di dar loro ricetto tra tanti altri scrittori gravi che appresso di lei si truovano, et mi renderà certo che non le sarà mai discara la mia servitù inutile, sì, ma reale et fedele. Dell'Ecellenza vostra Divotissimo servitore, 4.1.2. Alberto Mortoni'. / The gist of this is that Morton can no longer restrain his desire to present two strangers, presumably foreigners to his patron, knowing that he is the protector of the virtuous, of pilgrims and of writers, and that he will take particular care of them, since they have been exiled from their homeland. These two English emigres presumably came to the notice of Wotton and Morton during their posting to Venice between 1604 and 1609. The friendship between the two men is described by Izaak Walton as he quotes from a letter in his 'Life of Sir Henry Wotton' in which the older man recalls his nephew as 'dearer to me than mine own being', and of course subsequently penned his elegy 'Tears mourned at the grave of Sir Albertus Morton'. Wotton's career, as evidenced in this diplomatic gift, was spent implementing James I's ambition for wider European influence but later overshadowed by his aphorism that an 'Ambassador is an honest gentleman sent abroad to lie for the good of his country.' Perhaps his espousal of the cause of two exiles is evidence of this apparent duplicity.

[Adams 820 / Fiske 103 / Gamba 722]

Sir Albertus Morton (c. 1584 – 1625) was an English diplomat and Secretary of State.
Born about 1584, he was youngest of the three sons of George Morton of Eshere in Chilham, Kent, by Mary, daughter of Robert Honywood of Charing in the same county. His grandmother, when left a widow, remarried Sir Thomas Wotton, and became the mother of Sir Henry Wotton, who always called himself Albertus Morton's uncle. He was educated at Eton College, and was elected to King's College, Cambridge, in 1603, apparently by royal influence, but he did not graduate there.

In July 1604 Wotton was appointed ambassador to Venice, and his nephew accompanied him as secretary. In 1609 Morton returned to England, and August 1613 he was talked of as minister to Savoy, but he met with a serious carriage accident in the same year, and he did not start until 12 May 1614. Before 22 December of the same year he was appointed clerk to the council, and had set off on his return from Savoy to take up the duties of his office before 6 April 1615. In April 1616 he went to Heidelberg as secretary to the Princess Elizabeth, wife of Frederick V, Elector Palatine. He was knighted on 23 September 1617, and saw little enough of the electress: his brother, writing in October 1618, says that he had returned at that time and was ill, and under the care of an Italian doctor. He may have given up his clerkship while with the electress but on 6 April 1619 he had a formal grant of the office for life. He collected subscriptions for the elector in 1620, and in December of the same year he took over £30,000 to the Protestant princes of Germany. He returned before 12 March in the following year.

He resigned his place in 1623 in a fit of pique, on not being allowed to be present when the Spanish match was discussed. It was rumoured in April 1624 that he was to succeed Sir Edward Herbert as ambassador to France, and later that he had refused the appointment, which, Dudley Carleton wrote, was as strange as that it was offered to him. By this time under the patronage of George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham, and before 26 July he was formally appointed to Paris. He was injured in November of the same year by a fall from his horse.

Early in 1625 Sir George Calvert gave up the secretaryship of state for a substantial consideration, and Morton was sworn in at Newmarket in his place. He was elected Member of Parliament for the county of Kent and for the University of Cambridge (he had been seriously proposed for the provostship of King's College) in the parliament of 1625. Buckingham had written to the mayor of Rochester in his favour, and he chose to sit for Kent, but he died in November 1625, and was buried at Southampton, where he had property. Wotton wrote an elegy upon him. Morton married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Edward Apsley, but left no issue. His widow died very soon after him, and Wotton wrote an epigram upon her death. Morton was succeeded as secretary by Sir John Coke. (Wikipedia)

Sir Henry Wotton (30 March 1568 – December 1639) was an English author, diplomat and politician who sat in the House of Commons in 1614 and 1625. He is often quoted as saying, "An ambassador is an honest gentleman sent to lie abroad for the good of his country." (Wotton said that when on a mission in Augsburg, in 1604.)
The son of Thomas Wotton (1521–1587) and his second wife, Elionora Finch, Henry was the youngest brother of Edward Wotton, 1st Baron Wotton, and grandnephew of the diplomat Nicholas Wotton. Henry was born at Bocton Hall in the parish of Bocton or Boughton Malherbe, Kent. He was educated at Winchester College and at New College, Oxford, where he matriculated on 5 June 1584, alongside John Hoskins. Two years later he moved to Queen's College, graduating in 1588. At Oxford he was the friend of Albericus Gentilis, then professor of Civil Law, and of John Donne. During his residence at Queen's he wrote a play, Tancredo, which has not survived, but his chief interests appear to have been scientific. In qualifying for his M.A. degree he read three lectures De oculo, and to the end of his life he continued to interest himself in physical experiments

His father, Thomas Wotton, died in 1587, leaving Henry only a hundred marks a year. About 1589 Wotton went abroad, with a view probably to preparation for a diplomatic career, and his travels appear to have lasted for about six years. At Altdorf he met Edward, Lord Zouch, to whom he later addressed a series of letters (1590–1593) which contain much political and other news, and provide a record of the journey. He travelled by way of Vienna and Venice to Rome, and in 1593 spent some time at Geneva in the house of Isaac Casaubon, to whom he contracted a considerable debt.

He returned to England in 1594, and in the next year was admitted to the Middle Temple. While abroad he had from time to time provided Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, with information, and he now definitely entered his service as one of his agents or secretaries. It was his duty to supply intelligence of affairs in Transylvania, Poland, Italy and Germany. Wotton was not, like his unfortunate fellow-secretary, Henry Cuffe, who was hanged at Tyburn in 1601, directly involved in Essex's downfall, but he thought it prudent to leave England, and within sixteen hours of his patron's apprehension he was safe in France, whence he travelled to Venice and Rome.

In 1602 he was living at Florence, and a plot to murder James VI of Scotland having come to the ears of the grand-duke of Tuscany, Wotton was entrusted with letters to warn the king of the danger, and with Italian antidotes against poison. As "Ottavio Baldi" he travelled to Scotland by way of Norway. He was well received by James, and remained three months at the Scottish court, retaining his Italian incognito. He then returned to Florence, but on receiving the news of James's accession hurried to England. James knighted him, and offered him the embassy at Madrid or Paris; but Wotton, knowing that both these offices involved ruinous expense, desired rather to represent James at Venice.

He left London in 1604 accompanied by Sir Albertus Morton, his half-nephew, as secretary, and William Bedell, the author of an Irish translation of the Bible, as chaplain. Wotton spent most of the next twenty years, with two breaks (1612–16 and 1619–21), at Venice. He helped the Doge in his resistance to ecclesiastical aggression, and was closely associated with Paolo Sarpi, whose history of the Council of Trent was sent to King James as fast as it was written. Wotton had offended the scholar Caspar Schoppe, who had been a fellow student at Altdorf. In 1611 Schoppe wrote a scurrilous book against James entitled Ecclesiasticus, in which he fastened on Wotton a saying which he had incautiously written in a friend's album years before. It was the famous definition of an ambassador as an "honest man sent to lie abroad for the good of his country" (Legatus est vir bonus peregre missus ad mentiendum rei publicae causa). It should be noticed that the original Latin form of the epigram did not admit of the double meaning. This was adduced as an example of the morals of James and his servants, and brought Wotton into temporary disgrace. Wotton was at the time on leave in England, and made two formal defences of himself, one a personal attack on his accuser addressed to Marcus Welser of Strassburg, and the other privately to the king.

He obtained no diplomatic employment for some time, but seems to have finally won back the royal favour by his parliamentary support in for James's claim to impose arbitrary taxes on merchandise. In 1614 he was elected Member of Parliament for Appleby in the Addled Parliament. He was sent to the Hague and in 1616 he returned to Venice. In 1620 he was sent on a special embassy to Ferdinand II at Vienna, to do what he could on behalf of James's daughter Elizabeth of Bohemia. Wotton's devotion to this princess, expressed in his exquisite verses beginning "You meaner beauties of the night," was sincere and unchanging. At his departure the emperor presented him with a valuable jewel, which Wotton received with due respect, but before leaving the city he gave it to his hostess, because, he said, he would accept no gifts from the enemy of the Bohemian queen.

After a third term of service in Venice he returned to London early in 1624 and in July he was installed as provost of Eton College. This office did not resolve his financial problems, and he was on one occasion arrested for debt. In 1625 he was elected MP for Sandwich. In 1627 he received a pension of £200, and in 1630 this was raised to £500 on the understanding that he should write a history of England. He did not neglect the duties of his provostship, and was happy in being able to entertain his friends lavishly. His most constant associates were Izaak Walton and John Hales. A bend in the Thames below the Playing Fields, known as "Black Potts," is still pointed out as the spot where Wotton and Izaak Walton fished in company. He died at the beginning of December 1639 and was buried in the chapel of Eton College. (Wikipedia)

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Il Petrarcha con La Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo / I Trionfi del Petrarcha con la Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo da Traetto.

Il Petrarcha con La Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo / I Trionfi del Petrarcha con la Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo da Traetto.

Il Petrarcha con La Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo / I Trionfi del Petrarcha con la Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo da Traetto.
Il Petrarcha con La Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo / I Trionfi del Petrarcha con la Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo da Traetto.
Il Petrarcha con La Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo / I Trionfi del Petrarcha con la Spositione di M. Giovanni Andrea Gesualdo da Traetto.

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