Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Fiore dei Liberi and his treatises Fior di Battaglia/Flos Duellatorum c.1410.
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Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Sean M » 22 Sep 2012 16:55

Has anyone other than the staff at the J.P. Morgan Library looked at the ownership history of the Morgan Fiore? It seems to have been rebound at least twice: once when it was combined to make pages 241-259 of a mysterious fencing manuscript and pages 17 and 18 were flipped, and once when it was removed and sold separately. The folks at the Morgan cite a sale at London in 1836, but I have no idea how to track down the auction records if any were published. It would be very interesting to know if the other 240+ pages on the art of armizare which Bernardo de Rubeis says it was bound with were sold at the same time, and whether any of them correspond to the manuscripts we know of today ...
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby CaptainAbrecan » 25 Sep 2012 14:20

Isn't it in new york? You guys should go on a field trip :mrgreen:
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Sean M » 25 Sep 2012 15:59

And I will, to burrow through their archives and bother their librarians with questions, but I can't afford the cash or carbon of a 2,000 mile flight right now. I'm not a trained 19th century historian or book collector who knows how to go about looking for auction records from when Queen Victoria was a teenager, so I was hoping that someone more qualified had done so. My only Italian is Caesar's not Dante's ...
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby admin » 26 Sep 2012 10:47

Sean M wrote:Has anyone other than the staff at the J.P. Morgan Library looked at the ownership history of the Morgan Fiore?


The list of owners is here:
http://www.fioredeiliberi.org/fiore/
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Sean M » 29 Sep 2012 17:00

Hi Matt,

That essay is a useful summary of the four manuscripts, but these days the curious but penurious can download the Morgan curator's notes from their website. That gives two or three pages of details when you check the correct part of Novati and its footnotes. I am pretty sure that Matt Gallas' research is derived from these notes directly or indirectly.
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Sean M » 29 Sep 2012 19:39

You can download the curator's notes and additional bibliography at http://corsair.morganlibrary.org/msdescr/BBM0383.htm . I think that last time I tried to get the gist of Novati's comments on the Morgan, I used the scan of his analytical book which you kindly made available at http://www.fioredeiliberi.org/manuscripts/novati/. Tracking down what it was bound with and when it was broken up into its own volume might not be feasible, especially to someone with my current skill set, but it could be interesting. And I should be able to read Italian by 2016.
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Ariella Elema » 05 Oct 2012 06:28

The bibliography in the Morgan's notes leads to this entry in the journal Notes and Queries from November 20, 1875, page 414.

A LIST OP WORKS ON SWORD PLAY (5th S. iv.
201, 242, 262, 303, 341.)—It may interest MR.
FRED. W. FOSTER to know that I have in my
possession an Italian manuscript, apparently written
in the middle of the fifteenth century, in the
Venetian dialect, on the subject of sword play.
The name of the author is Fiore Furlan. The
MS. was formerly in the library of the Abbate
Canonici of Venice, of whose MS. collections a
portion passed into my possession, by purchase,
about forty years ago. It is a small, thin folio, on
vellum, illustrated with many well-executed pen
and ink drawings, heightened with gold, representing
the combatants with sword and lance in various
attitudes, both on horseback and on foot. The
manuscript commences thus :—
" Piore Furlan de Civida dostria che fo de Mis. Benedeto
delta nobil casada delli liberi da p'megids dello dicci
si dello patriarchado de Aquilegia in sua zoventu volse
imprendere ad armizare e arte de combater in sbara zoe
a oltranza. U De lanza azza spada e daga e de abrnzare
ape e callo cavallo in arme e senza arme."
The work seems to be unknown, and I can find
no record of the author ; but I think I recollect
that the late Sir Thomas Phillipps, Bart., of
Middle Hill, had also a MS. copy of the same
work. WALTER SNEYD.
Keele Hall.
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby admin » 05 Oct 2012 10:32

And he was correct, that was the 'Getty' version :).
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Sean M » 06 Oct 2012 01:30

Do you mean that Walter Sneyd's was the Morgan, and that of Sir Thomas Phillipps was the Getty? I don't see his name in your essay, but Wiktenauer claims him as an owner of the Getty yet gives no source.
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby admin » 06 Oct 2012 08:23

Yes that's right, I believe Getty was sold via auction in the 60's in London.
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby admin » 06 Oct 2012 08:27

Just checked my essay - it is all there. Source is the Getty themselves.
http://www.antique-swords.co.uk/

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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Michael Chidester » 06 Oct 2012 16:19

Sean M wrote:Do you mean that Walter Sneyd's was the Morgan, and that of Sir Thomas Phillipps was the Getty? I don't see his name in your essay, but Wiktenauer claims him as an owner of the Getty yet gives no source.

Hey now, I cited my source quite clearly, it was Matt E.'s article. If you want to read it in Matt G.'s words, see here: http://www.swordforum.com/forums/showth ... post599793
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Sean M » 06 Oct 2012 17:49

I must be too tired. Somehow my eye glanced over this line:

Matt Easton wrote:Known ownership history compiled by Matt Galas:

Niccolo Marcello di Santa Marina, Venice
Apostolo Zeno (1668-1750)
Luigi Celotti (c. 1789-c.1846) {sale, Sotheby's, 1825}
Thomas Phillipps, Ms. 4204 (sale, Sotheby's,1966)
Peter and Irene Ludwig, Aachen, Germany
Getty Collection (current location)


I thought the Wiktenauer page had a few more lines than the Schola essay, but I was wrong.

There is a copy of the Canonici sales catalogue from 1836 in the British Library, so I will look it up when I first get over there.

Edit: Also, I wonder if this is the Niccolo Marcello who they mean? He was first buried at Santa Marina https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niccol%C3%B2_Marcello
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Re: Manuscript history of the Morgan Fiore

Postby Sean M » 13 Oct 2012 04:54

Here is some interesting but possibly bad news, from the Bodleian Library Record Vol. 8 no. 3:

J.B, Mitchell wrote:Soranzo had been in the habit of binding within one cover a number of manuscripts, somewhat unequal in size and discordant in content. Canonici usually broke up these volumes, particularly when a work in Latin was set next to one in Italian, or when a manuscript was bound up with printed books. He had the individual manuscripts rebound, either by themselves, or together with others with which they had something in common.


But the proof of the pudding will be in the auction records and Canonici's library catalogue.
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