Case 1: Jesuit Origins

1. St. Ignatius Loyola, 1491-1556. Exercitia spiritvalia [Rome: Blado] 1548

The first edition of Loyola's "spiritual exercises," the method of formation of man and spirit at the heart of the foundation of the Society of Jesus. Woodstock Theological Library

2. St. Ignatius Loyola, 1491-1556. Document, signed, to Rev. Leonard Kessel, from
Rome, 22 May 1551

A "celebret," granting permission to the Jesuit Fr. Kessel to perform the usual priestly duties (hearing confession, preaching, etc.). With a relic, a particle of one of the saint's bones, attached. Acquired by a previous owner by even trade for an autograph of Martin Luther. From the Talbot Collection.


3. Giovanni Pietro Maffei, 1533-1603. De vita et morib. Ignatii Loiolae, qvi Societatem
Iesv fvndavit, libri III. Romae: Apud Franciscum Zannettum, 1585

The first edition of Maffei's life of Ignatius, which remained the standard biography of the Society's founder for many years. The frontispiece portrait of Loyola is taken from the copy of the anonymous Vita beati P. Ignatii Loiolae Societatis Iesv Fvndatoris (Rome, 1622), a biography rendered in eighty engravings, bound second in this volume. With the signature of Archbishop John Carroll on the first title page.

4. Society of Jesus. Ratio atqve institvtio stvdiorum per sex patres ad id iussu R.P.
Praepositi Generalis deputatus conscripta. Romae: In Collegio Societatis Iesu, 1586

The first printed edition of the Ratio Studiorum, produced for distribution to the several Jesuit provinces for commentary and reaction. With the autograph deletions and additions common to other known copies. The only copy recorded in the United States. From the collection of Sir Leicester Harmsworth.

5. Society of Jesus. Ratio atq. institvtio stvdiorvm. Romae: In Collegio Societatis
Iesu, 1591

The first published edition of the Ratio, incorporating numerous changes from the private edition of 1586; this edition, however, was also superseded upon publication of that of 1599. One of two copies recorded in the United States. From the collection of Sir Leicester Harmsworth, with the earlier book label of Henry Huth.


Next Segment
Return to Bicentennial Exhibit Menu
Return to Exhibits Menu