Augsburg: Johann Schultes and Mathias Rembold, 1641. Folio (300 x 203 mm). Letterpress title printed in red and black (torn and repaired), 15 double-page or folding engraved plates or plans by Matthäus Rembold (1629–1657), on guards. Contemporary vellum. Some plates trimmed closely. Provenance: purchased from Ars Libri, 1990. From the Collection of Arthur & Charlotte Vershbow. Item #401738
FIRST EDITION of this work on civil architecture by the eminent Ulm architect Joseph Furttenbach the Elder. The Architectura privata describes his own dwelling-house and grounds, and the fine copperplates show the basics and elevations of the house, windows, portals, grotto and gardens, among other things. With its small grotto, richly decorated with rare flowers arranged in compartments, Furttenbach’s garden courtyard epitomizes the intimate "secret garden" owned by the wealthy bourgeoisie in early seventeenth-century Germany and the Netherlands. The grotto in his garden is described as being filled with artifice and exotica, including shell-encrusted sculptures and waterworks, painted cosmological imagery, and mirrors. The flowers depicted are identifiable as the most sought after and costly bulbs of the period, the narcissus, tulip, fritillary, and crown imperial, demonstrating Furttenbach's knowledge of current botanical research.
Following his studies in architecture and engineering in Italy, Furttenbach returned to Ulm where he designed buildings and gardens and published a number of treatises on architecture and fortification. His construction of the Ulm city fortifications were among the strongest of their time, remaining impregnable during the Thirty Years' War. Berlin Kat. 1958.