Paris, Rome, Venice, and Vienna in Peter Lambeck’s Network

in Nuncius
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This article considers, first, the roles of Paris, Rome, Venice, and Vienna in the network of Peter Lambeck, the librarian of the Hapsburg emperor Leopold I, and, secondly, Lambeck’s and Vienna’s own places in the Republic of Letters during the period 1662–1680. It begins with a biographical account, in which I situate Lambeck both geographically and intellectually. The importance of Paris is contrasted with his not so positive experience in Rome. Secondly, I focus on Lambeck’s declaration of intent to link Vienna to the Republic of Letters. Thirdly, I survey the eminently Venetian networks through which Lambeck tried to fulfil his intellectual goals. The tensions between France and the Habsburg Empire crashed against Lambeck’s idealistic aims. This raises the issue of the impact of geo-politics on the production and circulation of knowledge in early modern Europe, and prompts questions about openness and secrecy in the Republic of Letters.

Paris, Rome, Venice, and Vienna in Peter Lambeck’s Network

in Nuncius




Paul Scott (ed.)Collaboration and Interdisciplinarity in the Republic of Letters: Essays in Honour of Richard G. Maber (Manchester: Manchester University Press2010) p. 233.


Ibid. p. 233.


Charles W.J. WithersPlacing the Enlightenment: Thinking Geographically About the Age of Reason (Chicago: Chicago University Press2007).


Giuseppe RicuperatiL’esperienza civile e religiosa di Pietro Giannone (Milan/Naples: Riccardo Ricciardi Editore1970) and most of his subsequent works.


Vittoria Feola“Prince Eugene of Savoy’s Library. A Preliminary Assessment,” Rivista Storica Italiana2014 126/3:742–787.


Jonathan IsraelThe Radical Enlightenment. Philosophy and the Making of Modernity 1650–1750 (Oxford: Oxford University Press2001); Justin Champion Republican Learning: John Toland and the Crisis of Christian Culture 1696–1722 (Manchester: Manchester University Press 2003).


Hans Jaumann (ed.)Die europäische Gelehrtenrepublik im Zeitalter des Konfessionalismus (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag2001).


Paola MolinoL’impero di carta. Hugo Blotius Hofbibliothekar nella Vienna di fine Cinquecento (Roma: Viella2015). In a similar vein is Gabor Almasi The Uses of Humanismus: Johann Sambucus (1531–1584) Andreas Dudith (1533–1589) and the Republic of Letters in East Central Europe (Leiden: Brill 2009).


Paul RietbergenPower and Religion in Baroque Rome (Leiden: Brill2006).


On Cramoisy see Henri-Jean Martin“Un grand éditeur parisien au dix-septième siècle: Sébastien Cramoisy,” Gutenberg Jahrbuch1957 32:179–188; id. Livres pouvoirs et société à Paris au dix-septième siècle (1598–1701) 2 vols. (Paris/Geneva: Librairie Droz 1969).


Jim Bennett“Shopping for Instruments in Paris and London,” in Merchants and Marvels: Commerce Science and Art in Early Modern Europeedited by Pamela H. Smith and Paula Findlen (New York and London: Routledge 2002) pp. 370–395; Vittoria Feola Elias Ashmole and the Uses of Antiquity (Paris: STP Blanchard 2013) p. 123 141 142.


Renata Caira LumettiButi tra bibliotecari segretari e maestri di casa Barberini (Parma: Torre d’Orfeo2009) pp. 74–81. Lambeck’s letters to Holstenius from his Parisian period are kept in Cod. 9643 in the Austrian National Library in Vienna.


Cod. 9712f. 25r–26v is Dupuy’s letter Paris 25 December 1648; f. 29rv is Boulliauld’s letter Paris 5 April 1649 (the exact expression used is: “quam jucundius & Reip. Literariae vtilis locare posses”). Dupuy’s letter Paris 25 December 1648 may be found in Cod. 9712 f. 25r–26v and Boulliauld’s letter Paris 5 April 1649 on f. 29rv.


Cod. 9712f. 243 for instance is a letter to Lambeck in Vienna from Ottavio Falconieri in Rome dated 6 December 1663 and relating the circle’s activities with the familiarity that is to be expected of a former member. Much biographical information about Falconieri can be found in ff. 338r. contains Falconieri’s correspondence with Cardinal Barberini in Rome when Falconieri was nuncio in Brussels and was sending both political reports about English affairs to Rome as well as books and paintings from Flanders. Daniel Heinsius whose letter we have read about Lambeck’s religion conversion dedicated the third book of his Elegies to Falconieri. Notably f. 415v contains Giammaria Mazzucchelli’s eighteenth-century biography of Ottavio Falconieri. It lists many of his foreign correspondents though alas he does not mention Lambeck.


P. LambeckCommentarii de augustissima Bibliotheca Caesarea Vindobonensis (Vienna: Cosmerovius1665). Hereafter referred to as Commentaries.


Cod. 8291which Lambeck completed in 1666 and which he used as a touchstone for the manuscript catalogues that he himself was preparing of the Imperial Library collections.


Cod. 9714ff. 25r–32r; Lambeck’s own Greek works including the Barberini press copies are on ff. 26r–27r. Lambeck’s personal library catalogue with his notes is in Cod. 13507–13510.


Cod. 9714f. 109r.


Luigi De ZancheTra Costantinopoli e Venezia: Dispacci di stato e lettere di mercanti dal basso Medioevo alla caduta della Serenissima (Prato: Istituto di Studi Storici Postali2000); Mario Zorzi La libreria di San Marco. Libri lettori società nella Venezia dei Dogi (Milan: Mondadori 1987); Lucien Bély Espions et ambassadeurs au temps de Louis XIV (Paris: Fayard 1990).


Cod. 9714f. 302r dated 26 June 1673. Vittorio Lodi L’immortalità del cavaliere Marc’Antonio Mamuca della Torre conte del Sac. Rom. Imp. descritta e consecrata alla sac. e real maesta di Leopoldo 1. da don Vincienzo Giulio Lodi (Vienna d’Austria: Heyinger 1701).


Cod. 9714f. 146r.


For instance Cod. 9714f. 304r Lambeck wrote “A Monsieur Pierre Pestalozzi Constnpli” though the letter is in Italian.


Cod. 8011.


Ibid. pp. 297–298.


Cod. 9714f. 325r.


Cod. 9714f. 341.


Cod. 9714f. 56r.


Cod. 9714f. 53r. On Waldstein John Edward Fletcher A Study of the Life and Works of Athanius Kircher ‘Germanus Incredibilis’. With a Selection of His Unpublished Correspondence and an Annotated Translation of his Autobiography edited for publication by Elizabeth Fletcher (Leiden: Brill 2011).


Cod. 9714f. 56r.


Cod. 9714f. 3rv letter dated London 10 February 1670.

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