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Original price £1,800.00 - Original price £1,800.00
Original price
£1,800.00 - £1,800.00
Current price £1,800.00

Godechal, Jacques: Tractatus de Deo Uno divinisque ejus attributis. France, 1714

Notes on lectures on the divine attributes of God taken by a student of Jacques Godechal (fl. 1694-1719), a prominent Jansenist sympathiser from the University of Caen.

We have not been able to identify any printed works by Godechal, who was a member of the Dominican Order and a Doctor of Theology of the University of Paris. A note on the rear pastedown indicates that these lectures were given in 1714, while Godechal was Professor of Theology at the University of Caen. Just four years later, Godechal would sign an appeal against Unigenitus (Nivelle 1769, p. 425). Godechal was subsequently dismissed from his position as Professor (Louail 1731, p. 8).

These lecture notes, which are in Latin throughout, are divided into three main sections: ‘Tractatus de Existentia Dei na[tur]a & attributis ad na[tura]m pertinentibus’ (pp. 29-127), ‘Tractatus de cognoscibilitate Dei’ (pp. 127-225), and ‘Tractatus de scientia & voluntate Dei necnon de mysteriis praedestina[ti]onis & reprobationis’ (pp. 226-591). This final section includes a discussion of Molinism (pp. 506-528), a system of thought on predestination and grace contrary to Jansenism.

At the rear of the manuscript, and in the same(?) hand, there is an index in addition to some miscellaneous notes. This includes a list of the Five Propositions of Jansenism (unpaginated page opposite the opening of the index).


Manuscript. One volume, approx. 19 x 14.5 cms in binding, pp. 1–141, 141–366, 366–591 [11], all except 2 pages have writing. Collation: 18 (–1) 2-388 398? (–7?); two leaves excised but no obvious loss of text. Intermittent catchwords. Written area c.15.5 x 10.5 cms, c.23 lines per page, no ruling. A single(?) hand throughout. Occasional marginal notes (sometimes boxed, ink colour often suggesting a separate campaign). Index on unnumbered pp. [4-7] at rear. Short title on p. 1, full title on final unnumbered page. Fragment of an early printed book (approx. 4.5 x 6 cms) used as bookmark between pp. 147 and 148.

Bound in brown polished calf over boards with a small cross marked to front cover. Five raised bands. Gold-tooled brown goatskin label to second spine compartment (damaged) (TRACTAT<.> DE DEO VNO). Gold-tooled decoration to remaining spine compartments, and sides. Red speckled edges. Pastedowns at front and rear. One free endpaper at front, free endpaper at rear excised (preceded by a blank page so likely also blank).

Condition (textblock): browning and occasional light staining, light worming to blank lower margins. Condition (binding): Light worming to spine, wear to leather at sides and corners, cracking to joints. Small holes to front free endpaper due to partial removal of apparently a bookbinder’s ticket (see below). Rear pastedown lifting.


  1. ‘Joannes Antonius Cotelle acolyth. Constantiensis’ (inscription to front pastedown).
  2. Perhaps a binder’s ticket adhered to front free endpaper, mostly removed (original size approx. 4.5 x 8 cms). The words ‘relie’ and ‘Rue [s]ain[t]' are faintly visible. 
  3. Modern pencil note to front pastedown endpaper (29/h).
  4. Formerly in the collection of Achille and Henri Moranvillé (1827-1895; 1863-1946).
  5. Sold we believe as part of Paris, Tessier & Sarrou, 9 February 2016, lot 16.
  6. Item purchased by us from an indirect source.


Jacques (or Jacobus) Godechal does not appear in CCFr or OCLC.

Bénet, Armand, Inventaire des Archives de L’Université de Caen... (Caen, Henri Delesques, 1892), pp. 208, 296, 298.

[Louail, Jean-Baptiste], Histoire du livre des réfléxions morales sur le nouveau testament et de la constitution Unigenitus, Troisième Partie… (,, 1731), p. 8.

[Nivelle, Gabriel Nicolas], La constitution Unigenitus deferée a l’leglise universelle… Tome Premier (Cologne, aux depens le a Compagnie, 1769), p. 425.

Statuta sacrae facultatis theologiae Parisiensis… (Paris, Antoine Lambin, 1715), p. 22 (for 1694).