Conservatione Divæ Osanne Andreasiæ Mantuanae oratio.
Only edition of this celebration of the life and deeds of the mystic and Dominicana Osanna Andreasi of Mantua. Composed by the pro-feminist writer, Mario Equicola, on the occasion of the announcement by papal bull in 1515 of Osanna's feast day, Equicola recounts the well-known episodes in her life: Osanna miraculously reading and writing at a very young age; her 37-year vows; her case of bloodless stigmata at age 30, and her profound vision in which she sees her own heart divided into four parts. The Blessed Osanna was thought to have consumed almost no food and little water, and endured great stretches of exhausting religious ecstasy. Osanna was born in Mantua in 1449 to considerable wealth, and later in life used the family resources to help provide for the poor, sick, and unfortunate. Given her extreme devotion, she was widely regarded as a mystic, and later gained a reputation as a seer. Mario Equicola probably met Osanna when she was brought in to the Mantuan court of Francesco and Isabella d'Este (for whom Equicola served as courtier), to provide spiritual direction and even issue predictions in state affairs. Equicola, in his oration, also echoes the words of Osanna's biographer and lifelong confidante, Girolamo de Monte Oliveto, that the mystic suffered great and unending anguish, such that she could not find words adequate to describe it, and which only contemplation of God could assuage. Girolamo wrote her vita in 1507, two years after Osanna's death, and it was clearly drawn on by Equicola in this short encomium. Equicola, who is best remembered for his treatise on love and as a champion of cultural equality for women in the Renaissance querelle des femmes. According to Paolo Cherchi, writing in Treccani, events referred to in Equicola's oration suggest a publication date not before 1518, and the text likely went through several revisions between 1515 and the date it finally saw print. The undated book was for many years considered an incunable, and even appeared in Copinger's supplement (under Aequicolus) with a conjectured date of 1490(!). Our book is striking for its primitive woodcut title insignia of the Andreasi family, which features a swan beneath a six-pointed star, and which is thematically repeated as a coat of arms on the last page. A fascinating encomium, commissioned by Isabella d'Este, herself a Dominicana mystic. No copies located in American libraries.
Full title: Marii equicoli conſeruatione [sic: consacratione] Diuæ oſanne | Andreaſiæ Mantuanae oratio ad. D Iſabella | eſtenſem Mantuæ principem.
Quarto in eights, 215 x 150 x 8 mm (binding), 212 x 147 x 2 mm (text block); A-C8, (first leaf unsigned, Aii signed Ai, etc, Aiv unsigned); 24 ff. Modern binding of reused limp vellum. Covers a bit cockled. Interior: Title with small marginal burn mark (not near text), faint discoloration to subsequent leaves in same spot; pale damp to tail fore-corners throughout.
EDIT16 18181; Hain-Copinger (Suppl.) 1, II, No. 91; Pescasio, L., Rarità bibliografiche mantovane, Mantua: 1973, pp. 137-43; Santoro, Domenico, Della vita e delle opere di Mario Equicola, Chieti: Jecco, 1906; treccani.it (online); Benedict, Ashley, "Blessed Osanna Andreasi," in Italian Dominican Women Mystics (online); Kolsky, Stephen, "Mario Equicola, The Real Courtier," in Travaux d'Humanisme et Renaissance, No. 246, Genève: Librairie Droz, 1991; Bagolini-Ferretti, La beata Osanna Andreasi, Florence: Tip. Dominicana, 1905. Not in USTC.
Mantua? Francesco Bruschi? c1518.