AE Monthly

Book Catalogue Reviews - December - 2006 Issue

For Boston from the Antiquariaat Forum

Bianca

The lovely Bianca Capello captured the heart of Francesco de Medici.


As long as we're discussing colonial American preachers, who could forget the inimitable Cotton Mather? Mather was a prolific writer and extremely influential minister in colonial Massachusetts in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. It is difficult to pigeonhole him by today's standards, his puritanical views being somewhat moderate for his time. To his dismay, many connect him to the infamous Salem witch trials. He was a supporter of the trials at the time, believing witchcraft had overtaken the colony. His promotion of the cause undoubtedly gave a certain amount of respectability to the horrors about to occur. Mather would spend the rest of his life downplaying his role. Despite this, Mather would also promote certain scientific investigations, including the promotion of smallpox vaccine, extremely controversial at the time, and promoted such concepts as the use of rewards, rather than punishment, in education. Item 32 is De Successu Evangelii Apud Indos Occidentales… a rare Dutch printing from 1699 of Mather's report on the success of preaching the Gospel to America's Indians. $8,260.

While Americans were hanging witches, the Dutch did the same to homosexuals. In 1730, a purge began of homosexuals, and as confessions led to more and more suspects, dozens of men were convicted of sodomy and executed. The trials quickly peaked, although the prosecutions did not come to an end for another seven years. Item 14 is Alle de, van indagingen, van diverse plaatzen… a moralistic work on the sins of sodomy, including names of people accused or convicted of the act. This was not a book in which to get your name listed in 1731. $5,080.

The Antiquariaat Forum is located online at www.forumrarebooks.com, telephone +31 (0)30 6011955.

You may view all of the items they offered for sale on line through the following link: Books for Sale.

AE Monthly


Review Search

Archived Reviews

Ask Questions