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Johns Hopkins University Library - Women of the Book



The Women of the Book collection is the world's most extensive gathering of primary research items dedicated to the spiritual lives of European and South American women: nuns, beatae, and female mystics and saints, produced between ca. 1450-1800. The materials are physically held at the Sheridan Libraries of Johns Hopkins University and many of them have been made available here with the support of the Arcadia Fund. 
See the illustrated portfolio document, this article in Johns Hopkins Magazine, and this short documentary video for more information on the collection, on which the Virginia Fox Stern Center for the History of the Book in the Renaissance is currently offering a visiting research fellowship.


(Last updated on 11.15.2021)
 


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Johns Hopkins University Library - Women of the Book
Apr 11, 2022 Sheridan Libraries, Johns Hopkins University
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Women of the Book – Overview of the Collection – 04-11-2022   For clickable links to the currently available individual digital surrogates (in the Bib# column of the table): please download the pdf version of this document.   Alternatively, insert the correct Bib# in https://archive.org/details/wotb_Bib# (e.g., https://archive.org/details/wotb_6743744).  
Topics: religion, women, rare books, medieval, Christian art and symbolism
Johns Hopkins University Library - Women of the Book
2004 [Arnauld, Agnès]
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4to. pp. (2), pp. 3-106 in ink; pp. 107-122 in (later?) pencil; pp. 109-149 in ink. ‘Additions’ numbered in early ink in a different hand on pp. 145-148; 149 numbered but left blank, presumably for further additions, reflecting that these constitutions were a work-in-progress. Pp. 103-6 on different sized paper, possibly inserted later but with catchword consistent from pp. 102-3, with much space left blank presumably for additions. Bound in Contemporary vellum. This manuscript offers...
Topics: Port-Royal des Champs (Abbey) -- Rules, Port-Royal des Champs (Abbey) -- History -- Sources, Abbaye...
12mo. pp. 72, 250. Book stamps of the Bibliothèque des Professeurs of the Grand Séminaire Laval. 7th edition of the writings of the French mystic saint Marguerite-Marie Alacoque (1647-1690). Alacoque miraculously healed from polio and ever since experienced visions. In 1671, she entered the Visitation Convent of Paray-le-Monial, where her visions intensified, much to the dismay of her fellow sisters. She had several revelations in which Christ showed her his loving heart. His instructions...
Large 4to, pp. (iv), 20, 194, 2 with 21 chromolithography plates, all printed by Hangard-Maugé in Paris, plus a final plate (22) printed by Lemercier as a photolithograph. One leaf printed in gold (a letter of appreciation form Pope Pius IX, dated 14 March 1863, referring to the careful reproduction of the paintings). Bound in full dark brown morocco, spine in 6 panels between raised bands. Franz Kellerhoven was a lithographer who was born and died in Germany, but also worked in the...
Single-sheet etching on laid paper [13.0 x 9.8 cm the sheet, 11.1 x 8.3 cm the platemark]. Unrecorded, separately issued etching of this (unusual treatment of a) popular Franciscan subject. When St. Francis was at La Verna in 1224, Brother Leo came to him hoping to receive some words written by the saint’s hand. St. Francis soon complied, giving Leo a sheet of parchment on which he had written a benediction, which is still preserved at S. Francesco in Assisi. This subject was treated rarely...
Source: folio
3 volumes in 8vo. pp. XXX, 322; XX, 413 [= 414], (2); XX, 120, (4). Bound in contemporary marbled boards. With 21 full-page hand-colored lithographs (including 2 frontispieces) and large folding table. From the library of Duke Max in Bavaria (1808-1888), father of Empress Elizabeth of Austria. With publisher's advertisement in supplement and second volume. First and only edition of an attractively illustrated history of monastic orders, both in the Orient and the Occident. The hand-colored...
Topics: Monasticism and religious orders -- History, Monasticism and religious orders
3 volumes in 8vo. pp. XXX, 322; XX, 413 [= 414], (2); XX, 120, (4). Bound in contemporary marbled boards. With 21 full-page hand-colored lithographs (including 2 frontispieces) and large folding table. From the library of Duke Max in Bavaria (1808-1888), father of Empress Elizabeth of Austria. With publisher's advertisement in supplement and second volume. First and only edition of an attractively illustrated history of monastic orders, both in the Orient and the Occident. The hand-colored...
3 volumes in 8vo. pp. XXX, 322; XX, 413 [= 414], (2); XX, 120, (4). Bound in contemporary marbled boards. With 21 full-page hand-colored lithographs (including 2 frontispieces) and large folding table. From the library of Duke Max in Bavaria (1808-1888), father of Empress Elizabeth of Austria. With publisher's advertisement in supplement and second volume. First and only edition of an attractively illustrated history of monastic orders, both in the Orient and the Occident. The hand-colored...
Topics: Monasticism and religious orders -- Habits, Monasticism and religious orders -- History,...
8vo. pp. (2), 588, plus engraved frontispiece and 3 plates. Contemporary calf, rebacked. Later edition. With a life of St. Angela, founder of the Company of St. Ursula in Brescia in 1535, which would go on to become the Ursuline Order. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Angela Merici, Saint, 1474-1540 -- Early works to 1800, Angela Merici, Saint, 1474-1540, Ursulines...
8vo. pp. 22 [1 blank]. Bound in modern marbled wrappers. With woodcut papal arms on title page. Extremely rare sole edition of this account of the miraculous cure of a Benedictine nun, published at the direction of the Archbishop of Toulouse. On September 2 1821, Adélaide Vaysse, a 23-year old who had taken up the name of Sœur Sainte-Clotilde, gave herself such a blow to her leg that her foot became crooked and her leg stiff, and she lost all feeling and movement in it. The remedies of the...
8vo. pp. 34, 1 blank. Modern card covers. Dutch child's ownership inscription on final leaf. St Reineldis is venerated as the patron saint of the town of Saintes, in Brabant, but is little-known outside of Belgium. The present pamphlet was originally written in French and later published in nearby Halle (Belgium). The book celebrates her feast day of July 16, when she was invoked "against fires, the plague, and other kinds of fevers, paralysis or strokes, against all sorts of severe pain...
Topics: Reineldis, Saint, d. ca. 700, Christian women saints -- Early works to 1800, Christian saints --...
8vo. pp. (6), iii-vii, 383. Contemporary calf, rebacked. “Presentation Convent, Limerick”; “Sr Margaret”; “Catherine M. ????”, etc. Dublin edition of the Life of Teresa, probably Butler's abridgment of Milner's translation from the Spanish original. The list of subscribers includes a mixture of men and women. 'Presentation Convent' was founded in Limerick is 1837 by the Presentation Sisters, an Irish teaching order dedicated to the education of children. Click here to view the Johns...
Topics: Teresa, of Avila, Saint, 1515-1582, Teresa, of Avila, Saint, 1515-1582, Discalced Carmelites,...
4to. pp. XI. Contemporary wrappers. Sole edition. The official articles for the canonization of Blessed Colette, including a summary of her life and the miracles attributed to her Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Colette, Saint, 1381-1447, Colette, Saint, 1381-1447 -- Miracles, Colettines -- Early works to 1800
8vo. pp. XXII, (2), 195 including engraved frontispiece. Contemporary cartonnato. First edition. Teresa Margarita Redi was able to serve only 4 years as a professed nun of the Order before her death; yet during this time she was revered for her ability to work with especially the handicapped and mentally ill nuns of the convent. Her eventually fatal illness so disfigured her body that it was not exhibited for public viewing; yet a few days after her death no trace of the illness remained and...
Topics: Teresa Margaret of the Sacred Heart, Saint, 1747-1770, Teresa Margaret of the Sacred Heart, Saint,...
16mo. pp. (12) 164, (2) including engraved frontispiece, signed Sellent. Bound in contemporary vellum boards, reattached very likely to original binding, newer titling to spine.  First edition. Rare life of the saint, doctor of the church, and Dominican tertiary Catherine of Siena (1347-1380). Its final chapter includes a description of recent promotions of devotions to the saint, particularly in Barcelona and among the Dominican Order of which the author was a member. In a portrait...
8vo. pp. 54, (3 integral blanks). Contemporary cardboard. Sole edition of these statutes for the Olivetan Oblates of Mary in Verona Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Olivetans -- Rules, Monasticism and religious orders -- Italy, Monasticism and religious orders for...
8vo. pp. (8), 9-269, (1). Lacking final blank. Bound in contemporary tree calf with gilt title label on spine; contemporary bookseller’s label (Libreria Hurtado, calle de la Carretas [Madrid]) on pastedown. Extremely rare sole edition (second recorded copy worldwide) of this translation by a Spanish nun of a popular liturgical and devotional manual by the Italian preacher Alfonso Liguori (1696-1787). Unlike most ‘convent culture’ productions, the present work bears no indication that it...
Topics: Eucharistic prayers, Eucharistic prayers
12mo. pp. viii, 388. Contemporary calf. Extra-illustrated with an engraved portrait of Louise de Marillac. First edition. A fascinating guide to the dutiful observance of religion by women in all stations of life. The section, lengthier section presents paragons of 17th-century female religious virtue (Louise de Marillac, Madame de Miramion, the Duchesse de Montmorenci, Marie de l’Incarnation, Jeanne-Françoise Frémiot de Chantal, Marie de Lumague, and another Marie de l’Incarnation...
Topics: Women and religion, Women and religion, France -- Religion -- 19th century
Folio. Single bifolium of pp. (4). Large [12 x 8.5 cm] engraving of St Homobonus administering the Sacrament to a kneeling penitent, flanked by symbols of Charity and Justice; all text in simple woodcut borders. Accomplished in manuscript on p. 4 by Felix Rodes, Thesorero, admitting Gertrudis Coxana as a Sister of the Confraternity, dated 12 December 1803. Slightly loss to center folds, affecting a few letters of text and lower margin of engraving. Later manuscript additions recording...
Topics: Cofradía del Señor San Homobono (Mexico City, Mexico), Catholic Church -- Mexico -- Societies,...
Source: folio
4to. 33 engraved plates. Contemporary Mexican calf, spine flat, gilt fillet to boards, spine tooled in gilt, First edition of the extremely rare magnum opus of Jose de Nava (1735-1817), Puebla’s master 18th-century engraver, and an extraordinary feat of Novo-Hispanic artistic production. The extremely talented Mexican, one of New Spain's most important engravers of the entire 18th century, was amongst the first to transition from the simpler wood plates to the more complicated and detailed...
Topics: Rose, of Viterbo, Saint, approximately 1234-approximately 1252 -- Pictorial works, Rose, of...
8vo. pp. xxviii, 570, including engraved frontispiece. Contemporary calf. “Bibliotheque de la Maison-mère de la Congregation [des Sœurs] du Sauveur et de la Ste Vierge, La Souterraine, 1861”. First edition. A new biography of Marie de l'Incarnation, printed just following the Revolutionary Period in France as the established religion regained lost ground. The frontispiece, dated 1797, depicts the recently-beatified Sœur Marie being escorted to Heaven by an angel. Click here to view the...
Topics: Marie de l'Incarnation, Blessed, 1566-1618 -- Early works to 1800, Marie de l'Incarnation, Blessed,...
8vo. pp. (2 blank), (25), (9 blank); Manuscript on paper in recent brown wrappers, title inked to upper cover. Neatly written in dark brown ink in a single hand. An apparently unpublished, fictionalized letter from a nun by the name of ‘Elisa R’ recounting her experiences during and after the suppression of her convent to her friend ‘Belisa’. The suppression of Italian monasteries followed the French invasion of Italy in 1797, affecting the Roman Republic, Cisalpine Republic, and the...
8vo. pp. (8), 291, (2 integral blanks), plus engraved frontispiece. Contemporary calf. “Felicita Carbajal”, passed on to “Faustina Dominguez”, and finally to “Maria Concepcion Dominguez”, responsible for the pencil sketches on the rear endpapers; accounts in the hand of Carbajal (?) on rear endpaper. First edition of this guide published in order to satisfy the natural curiosity of nuns for the practice of devotional mortification of the flesh. The author attempts to set out a full...
Topics: Franciscan sisters, Mortification -- Early works to 1800, Monastic and religious life of women --...
Two hand-colored engraved broadsheets: (1) Sheet size 409 x 257 mm., (unvisible) plate mark 311 x 201 mm. (2) Trimmed to borders (482 x 389 mm.), and laid down on modern paper. These prints for pilgrims and for private devotion show the history and miracles of Notre-Dame de la Déliverance, a “black madonna” located in Douvres (département of Calvados), and an object of veneration since the early Middle Ages. The legend recorded in these prints is of a statue of the Madonna allegedly...
Source: folio
Small folio, ff. 19. Manuscript on paper written in a neat German cursive script, original green paste-paper boards. An apparently unpublished biography of Kunigunde of Austria (1465-1520), the well-educated sister of Emperor Maximilian I and wife of Duke Albrecht IV of Bavaria, who later turned into a nun. The final leaf contains a postscript with notes on the ancestors and siblings of Duke Albrecht IV. The execution of our manuscript, dated 1796, was carried out at a time in which the...
8vo. pp. VIII, 155, plus engraved portrait. 19th C half vellum. Later edition (first, 1723). This edition was brought out by the nuns of the Convent of S. Antonio in Ferrara, who sign the preface. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Benedictine nuns -- Biography -- Early works to 1800, Monasticism and religious orders for women --...
12mo. pp. 90. Contemporary calf. “Eugenie de Brugghem”. Unrecorded in any edition. A charming pocket-format collection of daily devotions for young girls being schooled at the Augustinian convent of Berlaymont in Brussels, known as 'Demoiselles Pensionnaires'. The text gives instructions as well as prayers: “Dress yourself with modesty, as quickly as is possible, and then immediately fall to your knees to speak the following prayers...", etc. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins...
Topics: Augustinians -- Early works to 1800, Augustinians, Augustinian nuns -- Prayers and devotions --...
4to. pp. 40. With woodcut of Santa Catalina Tomás (Catherine of Palma) and St. Augustine committing their hearts and souls to heaven. Disbound. Sole edition of this sermon on the virtues of a local Mallorcan Augustinian nun, finally granted beatification in 1792 after centuries of informal veneration. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Monasterio de Santa María Magdalena (Sarria, Lugo, Spain) -- Early works to 1800, Christian...
8vo. pp. (4), 488. Contemporary calf. Early edition (first, 1788). As a daughter of the philandering Louis XV, Louise was drawn to religion at an early age. Her father however, intended her for a political marriage; it was only after refusing or being rejected for any such match that she was finally allowed to enter the Carmelite convent of St Denis in Paris in 1770, at the age of 33. She was elected prioress three times before her death in 1787. Proyart’s authoritative biography drew upon...
Topics: Louise, Princess, daughter of Louis XV, King of France, 1737-1787 -- Early works to 1800, Louise,...
8vo. pp. xvi, 324, (2). Contemporary vellum. “Ad uso de me, Colomba Asdezzoni (?)”. Sole edition. ‘Spiritual retreats’ became popular in the 18th century, less so for women. This work was intended to guide nuns through a 10-day retreat of solitary devotional meditation Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Spiritual retreats for members of religious orders -- Early works to 1800, Spiritual retreats for...
8vo. pp. (2), 97, (1), plus engraved frontispiece. 19th C boards. Stamps of St Alphonsus Library, NY. Sole edition. An original German work, supposedly composed by a ‘Discalced Carmelite of the Bavarian Province’, according to the title page, and illustrated with a devotional portrait of the newly-beatified nun. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Marie de l'Incarnation, Blessed, 1566-1618 -- Early works to 1800, Marie de l'Incarnation, Blessed,...
74 x 54 cm. Extremely rare large Mexican broadside portraying the genealogy of Christ from Adam and Eve by Puebla's major printer and engraver Jose de Nava. The broadside was presumably meant for educational purposes and chronicles important Biblical events, dividing world history in time periods. De Nava (1735-1817), was "one of the most talented artists and skilled engravers of his time in the old world and the new" (Mathes, La Ilustracion en Mexico Colonial) and among the first to...
Topics: Jesus Christ -- Genealogy, Jesus Christ, Genealogy in the Bible, CSAIP, Broadsides, etc. -- Mexico...
Source: folio
4to, pp. (4). Unbound. An apparently unrecorded circular letter sent by Sister Marie Françoise Grimaldi, superior of the monastery of the Order of the Visitation of Holy Mary in Turin, reporting on the recent death of Sister Marie Jacinthe Provane de Collegn. This extraordinary letter describes Marie Jacinthe’s career, from joining the Order at the age of 16, to working in the monastery’s infirmary, laundry, refectory, and sacristy, to acting as assistant to novices and superintendent of...
Parchment folio (20 x 29 cm), recto bearing woodcut arms of Federico Maria Giovanelli, 3 lines of printed text, 8 lines of manuscript, Giovanelli’s seal, and the subscription of Franciscus Franceschini J.U.D.; verso bearing 8 lines of manuscript within decorative border. An incredibly rare piece of ephemera, a certificate appointing Sister Maria Regina Felix Orzali as abbess of the Augustinian monastery of San Girolamo in Venice for a period of three years, issued by Federico Maria Giovanelli...
Large folio [43.5 x 31 cm], with large [12.8 x 9.5 cm] engraved vignette of Christ stumbling while bearing the Cross, captioned ‘Jesus of the Three Falls’. Completed in manuscript for a certain Maria Josefa F[?]otolica, dated 12 April 1790 (?), and signed by the Rector, Mayordomo, and Secretario. The engraving by Manuel Galicia de Villavicencio (ca. 1730-1788) seems to be modelled after an early-17th-century polychrome wooden statue in the Capilla de los Marineros in Seville attributed to...
Source: folio
12mo. pp. 112. With 4 small woodcuts in text. Contemp patterned cartonnato. “Fourth printing'. A charming provincial publication, printed in a small town and intended for the daughters of local farmers. The religious duties of these daughters are didactically illustrated by way of a lengthy 'dialogue' involving a pastor, a father, a mother, and three daughters aged 20, 18, and 11. The dialogue is punctuated with poetry and pithy quotations. No earlier editions have been traced under this...
Topics: Catholic women -- Conduct of life -- Early works to 1800, Young women -- Belgium -- Conduct of life...
32 cm x 21 cm. ff. (1), 44. Original full-leather binding, decorated with golden devices, extant clasps. Stamp of José Solórzano y Mata, who inherited the Hacienda El Moral in 1877. Manuscript in black ink about the famous case of the intestate death of Doña Angela Eugenia de Calzado y Terreros, a nun from the convent of Santa Clara, who owned the extensive and extremely valuable Hacienda del Moral and its mills in Chalco (just southeast of Mexico City). When the nun died on December 29...
Broadside with decorative woodcut borders, 31 x 22 cm. Folded and bound in marbled wrappers. Issued to celebrate the annual feast of Our Lady of the Snows by a confraternity of nuns in Torino, headed by the Abbess Lucia Grandi Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Fasts and feasts -- Italy -- Catholic Church -- Early works to 1800, Monasticism and religious...
8vo. pp. 143. Contemporary calf. Second edition (first, 1688). This far later printing retains the translator’s original dedication to the Reverend Mother Ann Beddingfield, Abbess of the English Poor-Clares at Gravelines (near Dunkirk). A Recusant community of nuns established in 1607, the Poor-Clares of Gravelines were expelled from the country by the French Revolutionary Army in 1795 and forced to decamp to Northumberland. One wonders whether the present edition – one of a minute number...
16mo. pp. 15, [1, blank]. Stitched in contemporary carta rustica. First and only edition of this seemingly unrecorded small handbook collecting prayers to Our Lady of Mount Carmel as well as to the Carmelite nun and mystic Saint Mary Magdalene de’ Pazzi (1566–1607). The work was published on the occasion of the Festa della Madonna del Carmine in Perugia and dedicated to a local noblewoman who acted as the ‘prioress’ of the celebrations. The Festa della Beata Vergine Maria del Monte...
4to. pp. 38, (2). Contemporary vellum. Sole edition. The ancient church of St. Susanna in Rome dates back to the third century. In 1587 the site was given over to a community of Cistercian nuns. The present work contains the rituals used by the nuns for initiating novices, electing a new Abbess, receiving visitors, and so on Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Cistercians -- Early works to 1800, Cistercian nuns -- Rules -- Early works to 1800
4to. pp. 32. Modern wrappers. Sole edition. A sermon by the Vicar-General of the island of Menorca, probably delivered to a congregation of nuns in nearby Mallorca. The sermon gives a sketch of the life of Frémiot de Chantal and urges further devotion to her Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Chantal, Jeanne-Françoise de, Saint, 1572-1641 -- Early works to 1800, Visitation Nuns -- Early...
4to. pp. XVI, 95. Contemporary vellum. Ex-libris of the Capuchins of Rieti (?). Sole edition. Intended to address topics encountered in a nun’s daily life, ranging from ‘tepidity’ to chastity, the virtues of manual labor and handicrafts, and the education of young girls. The final sermon describes the ‘renewal of vows’ ceremony undertaken by the nuns in the Monastery of the Visitation at Pinerlo, so the work would appear to have been composed specifically for them (as reflected in the...
Topics: Monastic and religious life of women -- Italy -- Early works to 1800, Monasticism and religious...
Small 4to. pp. (2), 34. Modern wrappers. Sole edition, unrecorded in OCLC or the CCFR. A fascinating document which cannot be traced in any other survival: an early biography of the deceased Princess Louise of France, composed by her fellow Carmelite Therese de Jesus, who signs the work at the end. The fact that it bears a confusing imprint (“Paris, et se trouvent [...] à Gand”) may indicate it was not officially sanctioned. As a daughter of the philandering Louis XV, Louise was drawn to...
Topics: Louise, Princess, daughter of Louis XV, King of France, 1737-1787 -- Early works to 1800,...
Folio. pp. 28. Modern wrappers. Sole edition, unrecorded. It seems that a nun of the (Bridgettine or Franciscan?) Convent of Our Lady of Mercy in Genoa, Suor Felice Teresa Basadonne, had at some point renounced her vows. The wealth and property she brought with her to the convent thus became the subject of a legal battle between the nuns, who felt entitled to keep it, and her relatives, who felt that they were the rightful heirs. A fascinating array of other similar cases are quoted to give...
Topics: Inheritance and succession -- Italy -- Early works to 1800, Property -- Italy -- Early works to...
Broadside (592 x 352 mm.) in yellow silk, 28 lines of letterpress, large woodcut initial, woodcut ornaments. Issued on the admission of four Franciscan nuns to the monastery at Montara. Cardinal Alessandro Mattei (1744-1820), Archbishop of Ferrara consecrated the inductees. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Source: folio
Large 4to. pp. (12), 304, plus engraved frontispiece. 19th C half calf. Bookplate of Bibliotheca Vercellone, Sordevolo. Sole edition. Never beatified, Solimani was responsible for the founding of not one but two new Orders. In 1744 the Sisterhood of St John the Baptist received Papal approval, having existed informally since 1730. “The congregation intended to lead a life of penitence in imitation of the precursor of Christ and under his patronage. All the choir sisters, therefore, added to...
Topics: Solimani, Giovanna Maria Battista, 1688-1758, Solimani, Giovanna Maria Battista, 1688-1758, Romite...
4to. pp. (4), 2 integral blanks. Unbound. Contemporary copy of a lengthy letter from the Bishop of Antwerp to a congregation of Carmelite nuns, promising them that he would do everything in his power to restore their possessions and to help them to return to their convent. The convent and its church had been liquidated in the wake of the religious reforms under Emperor Joseph II. The Secularization Decree issued on 12 January 1782 banned several monastic orders not involved in teaching or...
8vo. pp. (8), 202, (1 integral blank). With engraved vignette of Our Lady of Mt Carmel on title page. Contemporary vellum. “Maria Teresa de la Cruz”. First edition of the new rules for Discalced Carmelite convents approved by Pius VI in 1786, of special importance to Spanish nuns because of the high number of Discalced convents in that country. The 'Primitive Rule' mentioned on the title page is in reference to Teresa's selection of the 'Rule of [Pope] Innocent', approved in 1248, which she...
Topics: Discalced Carmelite Nuns -- Rules -- Early works to 1800, Discalced Carmelites (Spanish...
Large folio [55 x 41.5 cm] plate, printed on thick paper. Engraved in the ‘crayon manner’ in two colors (black and red) with engraved caption; “No. 645” at lower right. Striking, large-format stipple engraving printed in two colors depicting the head of St. Teresa of Avila in a state of ecstasy, with one hand clutching her breast while experiencing what she called the “sweet pain” of penetration by an angel’s fiery spear. The scale of the engraving is enormous, drawing the...
Source: folio
8vo. pp. xvi, 476, (1) [errata], (2) [privilege], (1) [blank]. Bound in contemporary calf, flat spine tooled in gilt with morocco lettering-piece. First edition of this guide to leadership in convents, by the French nun Elisabeth Fleuret (1721–1789), of the Congregation de Notre-Dame. Addressed to a newly elected Mother Superior, the advice deals with every aspect of the running of a monastery. Fleuret opens by giving a general account of the nature of superiority, emphasizes the importance...
Topics: Religious institutions -- France -- Management -- Early works to 1800, Convents -- France --...
Small 4to. ff. (6), pp. 28. Removed from a nonce volume. Preached in Mexico in the sister house of the Sisters of Mercy on the occasion of the beatification of Mariana de Jesus (born as Mariana Navarro de Guevarra Romero1565-1624), a Spanish member of the Mercedarian Tertiaries. She was recognized for her virtuous life and (at that time) for bringing about two miracles. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Mariana de Jesús, Beata, 1564 or 1565-1624 -- Sermons -- Early works to 1800, Mariana de Jesús,...
Folio. pp. 36. Contemporary wrappers. Sole edition. Outlining the rules by which new schools for girls were to be run in Florence. These 'conservatories' were intended strictly for young girls, widows, and 'wives legitimately separated from their husbands'. Articles 1-IV cover the duties of the male officers; Articles V-VI outline the daily and annual schedule of communal prayer (beginning at 5am in the summer, 6am in the winter); Article VII the diet to be consumed by the women; Article VIII...
Topics: Catholic Church -- Education -- Italy -- Early works to 1800, Christian education of girls,...
8vo. pp. iv, 115. Contemporary blue wrappers, deckled edges. “Soeur Hypolite Carmelite”. Sole edition. A lengthy hagiography of Teresa of Avila, delivered as a sermon to the Carmelite nuns of Saint-Denis, including their celebrated Prioress, Madame Louise of France, whose favor was meant to be curried by the dedication of the present work. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Teresa, of Avila, Saint, 1515-1582 -- Influence, Teresa, of Avila, Saint, 1515-1582, Carmelites --...
4to. pp. XI, (1), 76. Contemporary cartonnato. Sole edition. Apparently the only printed source on the life of Maria Giuliana Alessi, a noblewoman educated in a convent school from the ages of 8-17. Like so many other women drawn to religion in the Early Modern Period, Alessi suffered from debilitating illness and was not permitted to become professed as a nun. Nevertheless, she managed to join the Third Order Augustinians (secular rather than cloistered) and lived out the few remaining years...
Topics: Augustinians -- Early works to 1800, Augustinians, Monastic and religious life of women -- Early...
Large 4to. pp. XXX, (1 blank). Splendid contemporary gilt embossed wrappers. Sole edition. Giovanna Maria Bonomo (1606-1670) was a Benedictine abbess to whom two posthumous miracles were attributed by Pius VI, resulting in her beatification. A beautifully festive publication in striking contemporary wrappers, consisting of various poetic contributions celebrating Bonomo’s achievement. The poetry was composed and signed by individual members of a male Benedictine monastery in Perugia. Click...
Topics: Benedictine nuns -- Poetry -- Early works to 1800, Abbesses, Christian -- Early works to 1800,...
8vo. pp. xv, (1), 413, plus engraved frontispiece. 19th C quarter calf. “Fioretti Luigi (?)”. Later Italian translation of the curious biography of ‘Adelaide of Witsbury,’ evincing the enduring popularity of this tale for girls. Marin’s work seems to blur the boundaries of female hagiography and moralizing fiction: although purporting to be a real historical character, Adelaide (and the 'Monastery of St Eugenia in Valladolid') seem to have been completely made up by the French author...
Topics: Nuns -- Fiction -- Early works to 1800, Spiritual life -- Early works to 1800
8vo. pp. XVI, 167 (1) + fold-out letterpress table. First leaf verso a frontispiece engraving of the subject. Bound in red morocco, gilt to spine, covers and sides, marbled pastedowns and endpapers, all edges gilt. Illegible inscription on flyleaf. Finely-bound copy of one of the two editions from first year of printing (the other, Rome) of this life of Giovanna Maria Bonomo (1606-1670), Benedictine nun of Bassano. The book was published in the year of her beatification. The edition was printed...
8vo. pp. XV, 364, plus 2 engraved titles; pp. 375, (1), plus 2 engraved titles; pp. 419, (1), plus 2 engraved titles. Contemporary vellum. First Italian translation of this curious foray into belles-lettres by an ecclesiastical writer. The scene of this lengthy moralizing romance is set in Spain, and the French original appeared in 1765. This Italian translation was dedicated to Francesca Gherardini, Prioress of the ‘Ancille della Santissima Trinità’ in Florence – perhaps feeding the...
Folio broadside (c. 35 x 46 cm). Word ‘sonetti’ within elaborate woodcut cartouche, three woodcut initials and typographic elements. Unrecorded, provincially printed broadside celebrating the ordination of a novice into the Augustinian Order and her admission to the monastery of the Santissima Annunziata in Valenza. The sonnets by the cleric Francesco Maria Cavalli, cousin of the novice Alba Regina Teresa Edwige Cagni, play on the theme of marriage and in particular that of the novice...
Source: folio
8vo. pp. XIV, (2), 255, plus engraved plate. Contemporary cartonnato, untrimmed. Second, revised edition (first, 1777). This edition is untraced. 'The Girl Who Became a Nun' is a lengthy poetic dialogue between a little girl and her father concerning her decision to take the habit Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topic: Nuns -- Fiction -- Early works to 1800
8vo. pp. xii, 153, plus engraved frontispiece. Contemporary cartonnato. Sole edition. St Jerome composed these precepts for Giulia Eustachio (ca. 368-420), who had followed him on a tour around Egypt and the Holy Land. They have here been translated and edited by Gatteschi, who also adds a further treatise by Jerome on the administration of convents Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Jerome, Saint, -419 or 420, Hieronymites -- Rules -- Early works to 1800
8vo. pp. 88. Bound in 20th-century ¾ calf and marbled boards. With (9) leaves of plates (mounted frontispiece printed in sanguine; 1 folding map; 1 folding view; 7 folding architectural plates.). In addition to the added plates there are 4 woodcuts in the text. Ownership inscription of Alberto Galtinari, dated 1794, stamp of Jaco Calleri Graja, dated 1975. One of at least eight editions of this popular guide to the Shrine of the Holy House of Loreto. The book includes an engraved frontispiece...
Topics: Mary, Blessed Virgin, Saint -- Shrines -- Italy -- Loreto, Mary, Blessed Virgin, Saint, Basilica...
4to. pp. LV (1). Repair (with tape, to verso) at head of title page. Stab-stitched, subsequently bound into and disbound from a Sammelband. A celebratory publication attributed to an important author, for the profession of one Maria de las Nieves Caamaño as a Carmelite nun. It is a dialogue, written in verse, between Jesus Christ, and a nun (”his mystical wife a religious soul”). Besides the dialogue, there is further poetry comprising “a serious-humorous farewell which the new religious...
Topics: Caamaño de Santa Teresa, María de las Nieves, Carmelite Nuns -- Spain -- Seville -- Poetry --...
4to. pp. (8), 9-187, (1), text in 2 columns, large woodcut headpiece at beginning of text. 19th century pasteboard covered with contemporary pink paper, pink/reddish edges. Very rare edition of the rule of the order of Saint Clare of Assisi, compiled for the Capuchin nuns of the nunnery of Bagnacavallo near Ravenna, north-east of Italy. No other known copies outside of Italy. Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
4to. pp. (12), 42, plus engraved arms of dedicatee. Modern buckram. Stamp of local collector Salvador J. Trillo. Sole edition of this sermon offered on the occasion of Theresa de Jesus Giacosa y Tuberti’s entry into the Dominican Convent of the Holy Spirit in Jerez de la Frontera. An extremely provincial, and consequently rare, example of this kind of publication Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Dominicans -- Early works to 1800, Dominican sisters -- Spain -- Early works to 1800
12mo. pp. 70; pp. 36. Later wrappers over contemporary cartonnato. “Ce livre arpartiene a Louise Yves ????”. First edition. A charming pocket-format guide to this aspect of convent culture. Young girls educated by, in this case the Congregation de Notre-Dame in Strasbourg, were known as Demoiselles Pensionnaires. Eventually they would be released 'dans le monde', as the environment outside the convent was called. The present work thus attempts to offer a secular education for a religious...
Topics: Young women -- Conduct of life -- Early works to 1800, Women -- Education -- Early works to 1800,...
Folio broadside, 30.7 x 21.6 cm, with simple woodcut borders and large central vignette of the Virgen de la Guia holding her trademark ship in one hand and the Infant Christ in the other. The iconographically distinct patroness is encountered mainly in Southern Spain, and was typically invoked as the protector of sailors or seafaring expeditions. Completed in manuscript for one Maria Josefa Gutieres, dated 23rd December, 1780, and signed with a cut-out paper seal affixed with wax. Printed...
Johns Hopkins University Library - Women of the Book
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8vo. pp. viii, 160. Bound in 19th century stiff vellum. Wholly unrecorded early printing of the rules and regulations of a novel religious order of uncloistered, unhabited women dedicated solely to teaching and nursing the poor. The maison at Rive-de-Gier was founded by Antoinette Bahuet in 1700 and was granted approval in 1710. Despite the secular lifestyle of the nuns of the Holy Doctrine, the statutes here paint a picture of a highly organized, hierarchical community delicately balancing the...
Topics: Nuns -- France -- Conduct of life -- Early works to 1800, Catholic women -- France -- Early works...
Broadside, 44 x 32 cm. Undated but the printer has been working from 1780 until ca. 1815. Chiara da Montefalco was a native of Umbria. At the age of six she entered the 'Reclusorio di San Leonardo', a Franciscan-inspired monastery founded by her sister Giovanna. After her sister’s death in 1291, the then 23-year-old Chiara took her place as abbess. The growing community moved to what was to become the convent of Santa Croce, now Santa Chiara da Montefalco. Chiara had a number of...
Source: folio
Johns Hopkins University Library - Women of the Book
1780 Pasquier, Jean Jacques (engr.)
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12mo. ff. 51, (2). Bound in contemporary calf, gold-tooled spine, lettered “Figure[s] de Pieté,” gilt edges, marbled endpapers. Engravings on both rectos and versos, Pasquier’s imprint at foot of every recto and on most versos. Plate 19 underinked. A stub following leaf 51, a couple of imprints and several foliation numbers cropped. Contemporary manuscript notes to f. 3, several inscriptions on front flyleaf (one rubbed out and another crossed out in ink); ownership inscriptions on front...
Small 8vo. pp. (16), including initial blank acting as a front wrapper, plus engraved plate of St. Michael, Guardian of the Blessed Sacrament, signed [José] ‘Morales’. Extremely rare example of a pocket-sized membership booklet printed for the Confraternity of the Holy Angels in Mexico City – and in this case filled out by a female devotee, Brigida Rodriguez, who joined in 1788 and remained a member until her death in 1804. Beyond their religious functions, such organizations probably...
Large folio broadside [42.5 x 31 cm], composed of three woodcut vignettes (St. Joseph flanked by Guardian Angels) and two columns of text within woodcut borders. Completed in shaky manuscript by a nun, ‘a la Muy R[everend]a M[adr]e B[ern]arda de SS Jose’ dated the 19th of [?], 1784, and counter-signed by the Rector, Mayordomo, and Secretario. With a lengthy inscription on verso dated the 3rd January from Puebla de los Angeles: “Se canto la Missa por el alma de la M[adr]e Bernarda de S. S....
8vo. pp. (8), 329, (7). Contemporary calf. “Sor Marianne Gouzot” / “Marie Yardel (?)”. Sole edition. Dedicated (like several other conduct manuals of this period) to the daughter of Louis XIV, herself a Carmelite nun Click here to view the Johns Hopkins University catalog record.
Topics: Monastic and religious life of women -- Early works to 1800, Monasticism and religious orders for...
4to. pp. 26, [2 blank]. Unbound. Woodcut arms of Marco Aurelio Balbis Bertone, bishop of Novara, to title, woodcut initial, colophon dated 7 April 1779. A rare set of extremely interesting instructions for confessors of nuns in the city and diocese of Novara, in northwest Italy, issued by the bishop in 1779. The instructions discuss the qualities required by confessors - including patience, discretion, impartiality, and firmness - as well as how they should conduct themselves when visiting...