Elanak Biwzandian Bazmavep [The Byzantine Season Almanac].
12mo (90 x 144 mm). (2), 260 pp. With engraved title-page, 2 engraved plates, 14 hand-coloured plates, 1 hand-coloured folding plate, 16 head-pieces (2 hand-coloured), numerous tailpieces and 1 folding table.
(With) II: Drosakk' amenayn terut'eanc [Flags of All Nations]. Ibid., 1813. Engraved title and 15 engraved plates, coloured throughout. Contemporary calf gilt with morocco spine label in Armenian and florally gilt spine. Patterned paper endleaves. All edges gilt.
Only edition of this rare Armenian almanac, edited by Lukas Inchichean (Ghukas Injijian), who is hailed as the father of modern Armenian geography. Illustrated with hand-coloured plates of various costumes, including a large folding plate illustrating a ceremony wherein a woman in scarlet dress is jumping into a raging bonfire; in her hands she holds a golden arrow and a golden box. The almanc appears always to be bound with "The flags of the nations", containing 15 plates of hand-coloured national flags, dated 1813 on the title-page. Both works were printed and issued by the Mekhitarist Congregation on the Island of San Lazzaro in Venice. This island was a favourite of Lord Byron: while living in Venice, Byron rowed out alone in his gondola every day to the monastery of San Lazzaro to spend hours learning Armenian, poring over rare books in the library and conversing with the friendly Armenian fathers.
Some light browning and, near the end, occasional waterstaining; a few annotations and inscriptions to flyleaves, dated 1944. A few weakend folds to the large plate professionally restored.
Nersessian 309. OCLC 1055969209.