BEINECKE RARE BOOK AND MANUSCRIPT LIBRARY
GENERAL COLLECTION OF RARE BOOKS AND
Beinecke MS 2 Italy, ca. 1458
Jacopo Zeno, Vita Caroli Zeni
1. ff. 1r-6r In libros vitae morum rerumque gestarum. Caroli zeni
veneti. Ad pium secundum pontificem maximum. Iacobi feltrensis et
bellunensis antistitis. Praefatio. Gloriosa sanctitatis tuae. Ad
Sublime pontificatus maximi culmen...gratiae tuae non expertem tuae
Beatitudinis pietate et amore foveri.
Dedicatory preface to Pope Pius II.
2. ff. 6r-191r Vitae morum rerumque gestarum caroli zeni. Ad pium
secundum pontificem maximum. Liber primus. Qui venetae urbis originem
incrementaque tradidere rerum scriptores...Pro laudantium officio
gloria ut quidem par est. Haudquaquam fraudatam esse cognouimus.
ff. 191v-192v ruled, but blank
This manuscript is of special importance because it contains the
complete work. Beinecke MS 2 is Codex A in the modern edition of G.
Zonta, Vita Caroli Zeni auctore Iacobo Zeno in Rerum Italicarum
Scriptores, Nuova ed., 19, Parte 6, fasc. 1-2 (Bologna, 1940-41). In
the edition of Muratori (Rerum Italicarum Scriptores 19 [Milan, 1731]
pp. 202-372), made from a manuscript in Padua (Episcopal Seminary MS
46), the last seventeen lines are missing.
Parchment, ff. ii (parchment) + 192 + i (paper), 271 x 177 (177 x
106) mm. written in 28 long lines, double vertical and horizontal
bounding lines, all full across. Ruled in hard point on hair side;
remains of prickings along upper, lower and outer edges.
I-XIX^^10, XX^^2. Quires signed with letters of the alphabet on
verso of final folio and recto of following folio; letters placed
between inner vertical bounding lines.
Written in humanistic script by Franciscus de Tianis of Pistoia
On f. 1r, a foliage border which includes hares, stork, vase, and
arms of the Piccolomini family (argent, a cross azur with 5 crescents
or; surmounted by keys in saltire argent and a papal tiara; supported
by a pair of angels). Eleven elaborate initials, 11- to 7-line, in
gold, red, blue, and green entwined with foliage. The style of
decoration is decidedly Roman (see G. M. Canova, "Un saggio di gusto
Rinascimentale: I libri miniati di Iacopo Zeno," Arte Veneta 32 
Binding: s. xviii. Brownish-red goatskin, gold-tooled; pale green
and gold, Dutch gilt paper boards.
Written in Italy by Franciscus de Tianis (who was also responsible
for Paris, B.N. lat. 8910, 8911, and 4192) as the dedication copy to
Pope Pius II, whose arms appear in the border of f. 1r; the manuscript
is datable between the election of Pius II in August 1458 and the
election of Jacopo Zeno as bishop of Padua on 26 March 1460.
Unidentified shelf-marks include "Prato" and "R.66." According to a
newspaper clipping from the Yale files [n.d., n.p.] the manuscript came
from the Trivulzio Library in Milan and was auctioned by George A.
Leavitt and Company (New York, 27 Nov. 1886, no. 7). Purchased by
William Loring Andrews (bookstamp and bookplate inside front cover) who
presented it to Yale in 1894 (A. Van Name, comp., Catalogue of the
William Loring Andrews Collection of Early Books in the Library of Yale
University [New Haven, 1913] pp. 1-3, no. 1).
secundo folio: [ne]mine me uspiam
Bibliography: De Ricci, v. 1, p. 161, no. 2.
Exhibition Catalogue, pp. 229-30, no. 54, pl. 20 (f.1r).
Catalogue of an Exhibition of Illuminated and Painted Manuscripts
Together with a Few Early Printed Books with Illuminations...(New York,
The Grolier Club, 1892) p. 4, no. 8.
Barbara A. Shailor