Bonn: N. Simrock [PN 656], [1808-1810]. Oblong folio. Contemporary blue-gray wrappers with dark ivory cut paper title label "Sofonisbe Opera composé par F. Paer" in manuscript to upper. 1f. (recto title, verso blank), [i] (cast list), 4-153, [i] (blank) pp. Engraved. Text in Italian and German. With manuscript table of contents tipped-in preceding cast list.
Printed note to lower portion of cast list refers to a performance of the opera in Frankfurt on March 15, 1808: "Die deutsche Übersetzung ist die der Frankfurter Bühne."
Small pastedown signed "Otto Ladendorff" in a late 19th-century German hand to lower portion of title.
Wrappers worn, soiled, stained, and partially detached; spine partially lacking. Some foxing; repairs to inner margins of first two leaves, not affecting text or music; small binder's holes to inner margins.
First Edition. Eitner VI, p. 280. Grove Music Online. IMSLP (list of publisher's plate numbers). OCLC no. 67304138. Not in BUC, Hirsch, Hoboken, or Schneider Musikverlag N. Simrock.
Sofonisba was first performed in Bologna at the Teatro del Corso on May 19, 1805.
"Sofonisba, a classical heroine portrayed by various 17th and 18th century composers, becomes, in Paer’s hands, a more realistic figure – a real woman. When circumstances turn against her she takes poison and it is here that Paer seizes the opportunity for something exceptional. The emotionally charged, multi-movement final scene for Sofonisba was something audiences had never encountered before. The impact of these performances of Sofonisba was not lost on Rossini – the opera was revived 15 years later in Naples for his wife, the great Isabella Colbran. In a period when audiences demanded only new operas it seems an extraordinary testament to the innovations of Ferdinando Paer." Opera Rara online.
"[Paer] was one of the central figures in the development of opera semiseria during the first decade of the 19th century." Scott L. Balthazar and Julian Budden in Grove Music Online. Item #25857
Price: $625.00 other currencies