The Revelations of Saint Bridget of Sweden in the New World. Printed in Guatemala – No other copies located

SAINT BRIDGET OF SWEDEN (ca. 1303-1373). Nadal, Antonio, S.J.

Glorias del Sacerdocio Reveladas á Santa Brigida juntamente con sus obligaciones, y daños. sacadas del libro autentico de las Revelaciones de la Santa. Y ponderades por el P. Antonio Nadal de la Compañia de Iesus.

Guatemala: Antonio Velasco, 1717


Octavo in 4 I. [7], 63, [2] lvs. Collation: π4, A-R4; II. ([1], 2-16 p.). Collation: [A]8

SECOND EDITION (1st ed. Mexico, 1716).

A nice copy with a little light toning and mild soiling. Title with small tear to lower blank corner, leaf R8 with slight loss to upper corner, just touching a few letters. Bound with "Treintenario de misas, llamado de S. Vicente." (Valencia: Josef Estevan y Cervera, 1778).

Extraordinarily rare. Not in Medina's or O'Ryan's Guatemalan imprints. No copies in OCLC. The Mexican first edition is represented by 5 copies in the U.S. (UC Berkely, UCLA, Univ. of New Mexico, JCB, Texas A&M.) Borgehammer and Olsen, "List of St. Birgitta's Revelations in translation, both compete editions and excerpts" cite only the Mexican (1716) and Peruvian (1751) editions.

Meditations on the "Celestial Revelations" of Saint Bridget of Sweden (Birgitta Birgersdotter), the 14thc. Swedish mystic and founder of the Bridgettine Order. The book contains long excerpts from Bridget's writings, translated into Spanish and apparently marks the first appearance of any part of Bridget's "Revelations" printed in the New World.

The book was intended as a guide for priests, and the quotations from Saint Bridget regard the institution of the priesthood and the role and conduct of its members. The author is the Jesuit Antonio Nadal, about whom very little is known (there is no entry for him in Sommervogel.) His book achieved three editions, all printed in New Spain (Mexico 1716, Guatemala 1717, Lima 1751) but it is unclear where he resided.

The following passages from Saint Bridget's "Revelations" are quoted (in Spanish) in the course of the text:

Book I, chapters 17, 47; Book II, chapters 2, 20; Book IV chapters 32, 58, 59, 62, 69, 133, 312; Book VIII, no. 572 ("p. 3"); Book XVII, chapter 17.

Nadal also includes an account of Veronica Negroni da Binasco's (1445-1497) vision of Christ,  as related by her biographer Isodoro Isolani. In his introductory epistle, Juan Baptista Alvarez de Toledo, Bishop of Guatemala and Verapaz, announces that plenary indulgences may be obtained by priests in Guatemala if they should read Nadal's book from cover to cover.

About the printer: Antonio Velasco (1664-1726) began printing in 1715, when he was already in his fifties. By that time he had obtained a degree (probably in theology) and had been ordained a priest. Although his parents were also residents of Guatemala, it is unclear whether Antonio was born there or in Mexico. Among the important books to come from Velasco's press were "La vida di Sor Ana de Jesús"(1716) and Marroquín's "Doctrina Christiana", for which Velasco needed special types for the portion of the text written in the Kaqchikel language.

Not in Sommervogel; Not in Medina, La Imprenta in Guatemala (1660-1821); Not in O'Ryan, Bibliografia de la Imprenta in Guatemala en los siglos XVII y XVIII; Not in Borgehammer and Olsen. No other copy traced.