Pre-Publication Manuscript of a Treatise on Marriage [Manuscript]. [Dens, Peter (1690-1775)]. [Tractatus de Sponsalibus et Matrimonio and Tractatus de Quatuor Novissimis]. [Louvain?]: 15 July 1767-14 October 1768. 381, ; 59,  pp. Text in Latin in single neat hand with chapter headings, side notes and indices. Octavo (7-1/2" x 4-1/2"). Contemporary mottled calf, blind rules to boards, raised bands, gilt decoration to compartments, blind fillets and lettering piece ("V. Rymenant De Matrimon Et 4. Novissimis") to spine, edges rouged. Faint dampstain to front board, which is bowing slightly, very light rubbing to extremities, slight gatoring to spine, joints just starting at both ends, corners bumped, hinges starting, light soiling and offsetting to pastedowns, small circular sticker to lower left corner of front pastedown. Light toning to interior, negligible light foxing and soiling to a few leaves. An appealing volume with a clean and well-organized interior. $1,950. * This manuscript appears to be a fair copy of two works by Catholic theologian Peter (or Pierre) Dens: Tractatus de Sponsalibus et Matrimonio and Tractatus de Quatuor Novissimis. The first, an extensive treatise on Catholic marriages in canon law, was published after Dens's death in 1775. The shorter Tractatus de Quatuor Novissimis was published in 1776 and again in 1790 with De Sponsalibus. It concerns "the four last things," i.e. death, judgment, heaven and hell, the final stages of the soul in Christian eschatology. Both treatises were highly regarded, with the final edition of De Sponsalibus appearing in 1894 and the final edition of De Quatuor Novissimis in 1864. The first portion of the manuscript (Tractatus de Sponsalibus et Matrimoniis) has a completion date of 15 July 1767. The second part (Tractatus de Quatuor Novissimis) was completed on 14 October 1768. The transcriber is unnamed but may be the "V. Rymenant" noted on the spine label. The text is similar to the printed versions in organization and content, but has many differences of varying degrees and includes text not in the printed versions. It may represent an early version of Dens's work as taught to his students in theology at the University of Louvain, where he was a professor from 1723 until his death. Editions of both treatises are scar.
Book number 73204