Cologne: Chez *****, 1694. First Edition. 12mo, pp. . 320, 4. Engraved frontispiece. Title-page printed in red and black. Bound in countemporary calf, spine gilt in compartments, a very good clean copy. Scarce, the OCLC locates just three copies (HHG, MNU, PUL, plus 7 more.). Item #24081
This is a translation of De Papa Foemina Inter Leonem IV et Benedictum III. Joan was a mythical female Pope who is usually placed between Leo IV (847-855) and Benedict III (855-858). One account suggests that she was born in England, another in Germany of English parents. After an education in Cologne, she fell in love with a Benedictine monk and fled with him to Athens disguised as a man. On his death, she continued to Rome under the alias of Joannes Anglicus (John of England) and entered the priesthood, eventually becoming a Cardinal and was elected Pope under the title of John VIII and died during childbirth during a papal procession. Spanheim disputes the account of Pope Joan that was published by Blondel in 1647.