Celebratory poems in 21 languages and typefaces

Barth, Johann August. Universitati litterariae Viadrinae post tria saecula gloriose peracta Francofurti Wratislaviam translatae et cum Leopoldina [...] feliciter junctae die novae sedis ineundae solemni XIV calend. novemb. MDCCCXI [...] documentum extet [...].

(Breslau), Typis Universitatis, 1811.

Folio (220 x 355 mm). Title page, 21 sheets numbered A-X with letterpress rectos only, partly hand-coloured. Original wrappers with mounted armorial engraving in original colour on the upper cover.


An unusual, typographically ambitious publication commemorating the merger between the University of Breslau and the Protestant Viadrina University, previously located in Frankfurt an der Oder, re-established at Breslau on 3 August 1811 as the "Königliche Universität zu Breslau - Universitas litterarum Vratislaviensis" after the defeat of Prussia by Napoleon and the subsequent reorganisation of the Prussian state. The 21 celebratory poems in different types and languages (including Arabic, Yiddish, Hebrew, Russian, Dutch, Latin, German, French, Spanish, English, and various Slavic languages) all praise the university. The specimens in Arabic type boast coloured borders and 'unwan headpieces; an example inspired by medieval manuscripts has a coloured initial with pretty tendril designs.

The printer, typographer and publisher Johannes Augustus Barth (1765-1818) was based at Breslau; after the defeat of Napoleon he would publish another work with multiple languages and types, "Pacis annis MDCCCXIV et MDCCCXV foederatis", issued in 1818 with 63 poems in 99 languages.

Margins show small tears (partly restored). Wrappers stained and with soft folds; interior slightly age-toned and dusty in the margins, but text clean and in good condition. Rare.


Erman/Horn II, 2027. OCLC 14198089.

Stock Code: BN#51864 Tags: ,