Antoninus, Confessional, c. 1468

ST. ANTONINUS FLORENTINUS
(1389–1459). Confessionale: Defecerunt scrutantes scrutinio.
[With:] Pseudo-CHRYSOSTOMUS.
Sermo de poenitentia.
[Cologne: Ulrich Zel, not after 29 August 1468]. (06962)

Printed at Cologne’s first press, this is the first edition of the most influential confessional manual of the fifteenth century. One of three confessionals compiled by the Archbishop of Florence, this version begins with a quotation from Psalm 63:7, “Defecerunt scrutantes scrutinio” (“They have searched after iniquities; they have failed in their search”).

Bridwell Library’s copy, one of only two copies recorded in America, bears nineteenth-century library markings added at the municipal library of Trier, but the stamping tools used on its fifteenth-century binding show that it originally came from the Augustinian monastery at nearby Eberhardsklausen. When Napoleon’s government dissolved the Rhineland’s monasteries in 1802, Trier’s municipal library became the repository for thousands of the region’s monastic books, including those from Eberhardsklausen. Many of these were sold as duplicates at the beginning of the twentieth century.

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Printing in Germany
Antoninus, Confessional, c. 1468