21 August, Monday


D'Annunzio's unpublished letters on auction in Milan

Culture

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The next Aste Bolaffi auction at Milan's Grand Hotel on June 22 will include 782 lots of rare books and autographed items.
 
Highlights include the unpublished letters of the Italian poet Gariele D'Annunzio and the diary of the Italian fascist Roberto Farinacci.
 
The letters are part of the correspondence between D'Annuzio and Giovanni Rizzo, the prefect who watched over the poet's life and activities on behalf of the Fascist government during the years he spent at Lake Garda.
 
The correspondence includes 83 signed letters with a starting price of 20,000 euros. The letters by D'Annunzio have never before been published and hold historical and political value, since the poet used Rizzo to amplify his positions and to convey messages to Prime Minister Benito Mussolini. The signed, typewritten diary of Fascist party secretary Roberto Farinacci will also have a starting price of 20,000 euros and be accompanied by copies of newspapers and court documents from a trial that began in 1947, two years after he was executed by firing squad in Vimercate. At that time his heirs opposed the publication of them.
 
The documents show that Farinacci distanced himself significantly from the line taken by Mussolini. Playbills and postcards signed by Maria Callas will also be included, as well as one of her private letters written in Rome in 1969 prior to leaving for Turkey and one in Monetcarlo in 1961 that was addressed to her Bologna-based admirer Paolo Barbieri, who later became a friend (lots 737 and 746, with a starting price of 1,000 euros each).
 
In the books section, a highlight is lot 501: the most famous atlas of the 16th century with 363 views of 543 cities, 'Civitates Orbis Terrarum', with a starting price of 50,000 euros.
 
"This is the 'lighthouse' of the auction," Aste Bolaffi Business Developer Cristiano Collari said, "one of the most famous books of this type. It is the most beautiful copy that has ever gone on auction, with a red Morocco leather binding from the 18th century." The works of Giambattista Bodoni from Marche native Lorenzo Solari's collection are another highlight, with 271 lots up for bidding. It is the largest private collection of the works of Bodoni, who is considered one of the most important publishers and printer in Italy and the world between the mid-18th century and the early nineteenth century.
 
The collection includes editions on exotic characters, including the 'Manuale Tipografico' from 1818, the result of 40 years of work that was completed by his wife. Bidding will start at 14,000 euros.

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