GREGORY THE GREAT.
Homiliae in Evangelia, book I, homily 2, from the beginning to near the end of verse 2, a single leaf, single...
From a well-written manuscript of Gregory the Great’s Homilies on the Gospels, preached most probably during the liturgical year 590–1 and published the following year.
in Latin, Deuteronomy 11,24–12,30 and 13,1–14,29; an almost complete leaf written in a good rounded romanesque hand...
A very large folio leaf from an Italian giant or ‘Atlantic’ Bible. This genre of romanesque Bible originated in Rome in the mid-eleventh century; the production and diffusion were no doubt due in part to the clerical reforms under Popes Leo IX and Gregory VII. In the early twelfth century manuscript...
with readings and music for the 18th, 19th and 20th Sundays after Pentecost; a partial bifolium and a single leaf (text...
The fine angular script and elegantly simple initials are typical of Cistercian manuscripts, although the absence of punctus flexus punctuation precludes a more definitive Cistercian attribution.
ANTONINUS OF FLORENCE, Saint.
Summa theologica [Pars II].
[Venice, Franciscus Renner de Heilbronn, and Nicolaus de Frankfordia, 1474].
First edition; a large, crisp copy of a rare and important incunable. This was the first appearance of any part of Antoninus’s Summa theologica, or Summa moralis, an ambitious work in four parts exploring the entire field of moral theology; this, the Secunda, is the part which deals with the seven...
GART DER GESUNDHEIT.
Mainz, Peter Schoeffer, 28 March 1485.
First edition. The Mainz Gart der Gesundheit marks the beginning of scientific naturalism in botanical book illustration, representing a conspicuous departure from the iconographic conventions of earlier incunable herbals. It is the first book published by Schoeffer in a vernacular language, and for...
CASSIAN, John, monk.
De institutis coenobiorum [together with:] Collationes Patrum.
Basel, [Johann Amerbach], after 24 September 1485.
I. First edition of the Institutes, one of the most important texts in the history of monasticism. It represents the legacy of the years Cassian spent among the Desert Fathers of Egypt and sets out rules for monastic life which were to be the basis of many Western rules, including, for...
PIUS II (Nicolaus von WYLE, editor).
Nuremberg, Anton Koberger, 17 July 1486.
Second Koberger edition of the Epistolae familiares of Aeneas Sylvius Piccolomini (1405-64), the great Renaissance humanist who became Pope Pius II in 1458, a handsome copy enhanced with manuscript additions comprising epistolary models, a German-Latin wordlist, and German medical recipes.
ITALY – LOMBARDY.
Letters patent by Giovanni de Sigestro, Vicar General of the minorite friars in the cismontane province, granting...
A beautifully written and illuminated Italian Renaissance charter.
Opera et tractatus.
Nuremberg, Caspar Hochfeder, 27 March 1491.
FIRST EDITION of the works of St. Anselm, Bishop of Canterbury: the first appearance in print, among other works, of his Proslogion, containing the first enunciation of the ontological proofs of the existence of God; this was also the first book printed by Hochfeder.
ALBERTANUS CAUSIDICUS BRIXIENSIS.
De arte loquendi et tacendi.
Ingolstadt, [Printer of Celtis ‘Epitoma’ (?Johann Kachelofen), c. 1492.]
Very rare Ingolstadt edition of this treatise on the art of speech, the most influential work of the thirteenth-century Brescian causidicus, Albertano.
ABSTEMIUS, Laurentius (i.e. Lorenzo ASTEMIO, or sometimes BEVILACQUA).
De quibusdam locis obscuris.
Venice, Bernardino Benagli, [n. d., but c. 1494.]
Editio princeps, indeed the only attested edition, of this rare incunable dealing with topics of classical philology and orthography.
SFORZA, Ludovico, Duke of Milan.
Letters patent granting various castles and lands to Bertrando de’ Rossi, Count of Berceto,...
A significant document issued during the Italian War of 1494–1498 by Ludovico Sforza (also known as Ludovico il Moro, duke of Milan 1494–1499).
De patientia aurei libri tres.
Brescia, Bernardinus de Misintis, 30 May 1497.
First edition of Mantuanus’s work containing -on recto of m3- a lengthy reference to America, one of the very few 15th century instances: a ‘mention of discoveries of islands in the Atlantic, noting their size and the fact that they are inhabited. Because none of the ancient geographers knew...
[INDULGENCE]. MILÁ, Luis de, Cardinal.
Letter of Indulgence (in Catalan), beginning ‘A Honor …’ granted by Luis de Mila,...
Lérida, Heinrich Botel, c. 1498.
Printed at Lérida, the second city of Catalonia, about 100 miles inland from Barcelona: an indulgence granted by Luis de Mila, Bishop of Lérida, in favour of the living (as opposed to the dead; see below) to gather funds for the repair of the old Cathedral of Lérida.
Die Cronica van der hilliger Stat Coellen.
Cologne, Johann [II] Koelhoff, [23rd August 1499].
First edition of the first history of Cologne, famous for containing one of the earliest printed accounts on the history of printing.
INTITIAL from a manuscript Gradual or Antiphonal; initial 'U' painted in rose red with elaborate white tracery, the...
The stylized decoration and use of bright colours, including the deep blue grape motif, recalls the art of Ferrara at the end of the third quarter of the 15th century. Compare, for example, an initial in a Bible painted for the Este family by Taddeo Crivelli (active from 1451, died 1479) which is now...
COMMENTARY, in Latin; a complete paper leaf, double columns of 61 lines, the words commented on written in a large...
Much of the commentary is concerned with legal transactions and gives instructions about how to produce a valid legal document, such as putting the name of the reigning emperor at the start of the text. The commentary also discusses the different professions and occupations such as head of state, judge,...
GERMANY – NUREMBERG.
Manuscript letter, in Latin, from the Abbot of St. Aegidius, Nuremberg, complaining about the actions of...
St. Aegidius fell under the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the archbishopric of Bamberg, and the letter is a somewhat exasperated account of the archbishop’s efforts to extract taxation from the monastery (on account of its imperial ‘regalia’) and the abbot’s refusal to allow any such thing....
ARNALDUS DE VILLANOVA.
Computus ecclesiasticus et astronomicus ... noviter impressum.
(Colophon:) Venice, Bernardino Vitali, 17 February 1501.
Rare first edition, the Erwin Tomash copy. ‘Arnald of Villanova ... was born either in Villa Nova (Spain) or Villeneuve (France). He died in a shipwreck in 1314. He lectured on philosophy and medicine in both Barcelona and Paris but is known chiefly for his large number of works on alchemy. Despite...