CARIOLA, Antonio; DOINO, Caterino. Ritratti de ser.mi Principi D’Este sig.ri di Ferrara con l’aggionta de loro fatti più memorabili ridotti in sommario.

Ferrara, Catarino Doino e Francesco Suzzi., 1641

Quarto (214 x 160 mm.); 28 unumbered leves comprising an engraved title-page and 13 full page engravings. A couple of leaves reinforced in the gutter, a small wormtrack in the inner white margin of four leaves just touching the engraving border overall a good copy in contemporary boards from the library of Richard Wood (ex libris) and Bibliotheca Hebrziana.

 GBP 7,000


A lavishly illustrated work on the history of the Este, rulers of Ferrara. Dedicated to the Duke of Modena, it comprises 14 copperplates, each portraying two princes of Ferrara, accompanied by biographical sections written by the historian Antonio Cariola.

In the preface, the engraver and publisher Caterino Doino (fl.16th/17th century) explains that this celebratory work was undertaken in old age. Inspirational was F. Berni's poem Degli Eroi della Serenissima Casa d'Este (1640), illustrated with five portraits (Almerico, Tedaldo I, Bonifacio III, Matilda and Azzo VIII). To these Doino added, in his Ritratti, Guglielmo Adelardi, Marchesella Adelardi, Aldovrandino II, Azzo IX, Obizzo IV, Azzo X, Francesco I, Azzo XI, Rinaldo III, Obizzo VII, Aldovrandino IV, Niccolò Zoppo II, Alberto V, Niccolò III, Lionello I, Borso I, Ercole I, Alfonso I, Ercole II, Alfonso II and Cesare I.

The plates are considered a second issue of Doino's own Imagini de' prencipi d'Este (1640), a suite of prints, differing only in the revised numeration, without the historical text. Though traditionally attributed to Doino, they are now believed to be the work of the Ferrara artist Giuseppe Caletti (DBI). All portraits were loosely based on Faccini's frescoes in the Castle of Ferrara. ‘That these engravings are related to the frescoes at Ferrara is proven by the fact that the first print portraying Almerico and Tedaldo, the first and second marquises of Ferrara, resembles very closely the faded remains of the lower right panel still extant on the Castle' (Coffin, 167).

‘It is remarkable that Doino printed this work entirely at his expense, most likely incurring into substantial debt. This is probably why it is very scarce' (Clement VI, 287).



Bartsch ill., 44, p. 351-63; Cicognara 2021. LC, Princeton, Getty, Frick and NYPL copies recorded in the US. D.R. Coffin, ‘Pirro Ligorio and Decoration of the Late 16th Century at Ferrara', The Art Bulletin, 37 (1955), 167-85; M. Sframeli, ‘Doino, Caterino', Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani 40 (1991); D. Clement, Bibliothèque curieuse historique et critique (1756).



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