An Italian farmer turned Turkish satirist for a Croat audience

Croce, Giulio Cesare / Nikola Palikuca (transl.). Himbenost pritankogh Veleznanstva Nasradinova.

Ancona, Pietro Paolo Ferri, 1771.

12mo. With a woodcut of the main character on the title-page. Contemporary plain wrappers.


Very rare first edition of a Croatian translation of the popular comic novel "Le sottilissime astuzie di Bertoldo" by Giulio Cesare Croce, first published in 1606. Based on oral traditions, this highly popular novel told the story of the farmer Bertoldo, who is sometimes cunning and at other times stupid. In this Croatian version the translator "localized" the name of the main character to Nasreddin, thereby establishing a link with the famous 13th-century Turkish satirist Nasreddin Hodja, whose stories were well known in the Balkan region. The translator, Nikola Palikuca from Prokljan (near Šibenik) was probably the pseudonym of a friar or nun. A second edition of the book was published in 1799 in Venice.

With owner's inscriptions on the final blank and interior of the wrapper and some pencil crossing on the back of the title-page. Browned and with waterstains throughout, nevertheless a structurally good edition of a very rare book.


Deželjin, "Bertoldi di Giulio Cesare Croce e il riflesso di quest'opera nell'altra sponda dell'Adriatico" in: Capasso, L'Italia altrove, atti del III convegno internazionale di studi dell'AIBA, pp. 135-144. Not in WorldCat; ICCU.

Stock Code: BN#49630 Tags: ,