A masterpiece of the Spanish Renaissance
Arte subtilissima, por la qual se enseña a escrevir perfectamente, hecho y experimentado, y agora; de nuevo añadido
Saragossa, Pedro Bernúz, 1550 (23 July)
The Arte subtilissima is the revised second edition of the first calligraphy and handwriting manual published in Spain. The woodblocks of the first edition (1548) are re-employed, except for three; twenty-four “Tablas mas estudiadas y mas esmeradas que antes” are added, and these enlarge the book by two gatherings (sixteen leaves). One of the new blocks is dated 1547, seven are dated 1550, and sixteen are undated. J.P.R. Lyell’s complaint that Iciar’s writing books were “thumbed out of existence” is validated by modern bibliographical tools: ten copies of the 1548 first edition, some just fragments, are recorded in public collections worldwide. Our 1550 second edition is less rare, but equally difficult to find complete and in good condition: twelve copies are recorded public collections, of which at least four are incomplete.