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Item #: OP2465AB-334
L'ARTE DI ARRAMPICARE DI EMILIO COMICI Severino Casara Milan 1957 1st edition DJ Fine
By Casara, Severino
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Milano, 1957, 1st edition. 96 pp text, 342 b/w photos, many full page, 18 copies of Comici's letters, 1 color photo. In Italian.  This is a large and thick hardcover book, 11' tall, 9' wide, and 1 1/2' thick, with 342 b/w photos of Comici and his climbs. The hardcover book is Fine and Dust Jacket is in Near Fine condition. Very few Italian books this old are in such excellent condition.

This book is about the life and climbs of the great pre-war climber Emilio Comici, who set new standards in Alpine climbing.  His books are very rare, and unusual for featuring high standard rock climbing before the rest of the world was coming to grips with hard rock and snow, and was just tip-toeing into the Himalaya.
 
Emilio Comici was an artist of alpinism, one of the greatest of all time. He opened extreme routes reaching the highest degrees of climbing difficulty known in the 1930s, especially in the Dolomites. He loved the Dolomites, and in particular the three 'indian Gods', as he defined them, the fantastic Tre Cime di Lavaredo.
 
He was born in Trieste on February 21, 1901. His first passion was speleology but at the age of 26 he felt that he needed to explore something different from the deep carsic caves around Trieste, something closer to the sky. After the first trainings in the walls of Val Rosandra (where he founded a climbing school, that became one of the best in Italy), a small valley near Trieste, he started climbing in the Julian Alps.
 
His first exploit, in 1927, was the climb of Innominata from the north gorge, the first on the vertical north walls of the Jof Fuart group. Then he climbed the huge north face of Cima di Riofreddo, 600 meters with very difficult passages. In the thirties he started climbing in the Dolomites, and with the climb of Sorella di Mezzo in the Sorapis group, and became the first Italian climber to reach the sixth degree of rock climbing.
 
In the same year he opened another extreme route in that group, climbing ' Il Dito di Dio'. Then he opened many new routes also in the winter season. In that period his activity was very intense: Torre Innominata in the Rinaldo group, the west face of Monte Cimone, the west face of Croda dei Toni di mezzo.

Then two great exploits made him very famous: the north face of Monte Civetta (in two days) and the north face of Cima Grande di Lavaredo in 1933. The climb of Cima Grande (after almost 20 failed attempts of different teams of climbers) provoked harsh polemics among the italian climbers. Maybe Comici was just too great for that times. They accused him to use too many pitons or other artificial helps. His fellow climbers said that without the pitons he wouldn't have been able to climb the mountain. But four years later he convinced everybody when he climbed the same route as a free solo.
 
Another remarkable climb in the Tre Cime group was Cima Piccola di Lavaredo through the famous 'spigolo giallo', one of the most difficult passages in the Dolomites. Then another great climb as free solo: the Fehrman route to Campanile Basso di Brenta. His last great exploit was the climb of 'Il Salame' (Sassolungo group) in 1940, with his friend Severino Casara, another famous Italian climber.
 
A few months later some friends asked him to go with them training in a wall near Selva. In a delicate passage, trying to secure his friends, used an old rope. The rope broke and he fell. That was the last flight of the 'angel of the Dolomites'.
 
Due to the large size and weight of this book, extra postage will be requested for Priority Mail or International Mail.


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