Adam Lonicer (1528-1586)
LONICER, Adam (1528-1586). Kreuterbuch, künstliche Conterfeytunge der Bäume, Stauden, Hecken ... Jetzo gantz fleissig von newem durch sehen, gebessert und weit uber alle vorige Edition gemehret. Frankfurt: M. Lechler for heirs of Chr. Egenolff, 1573.
Beautifully contemporary hand-coloured example of Lonicer's popular herbal. This is the fifth German edition, and deals not only with trees, shrubs and herbs and the creation of gardens, but also the art of distillation, animals, ores, precious stones and metals. The woodcuts are for the most part copied from designs by Rößlin and Hieronymus Bock, and include mythical creatures such as unicorns, griffins and dragons. VD 16, L 2420; Nissen BBI 1228; Pritzel 5599.
Folio (305 x 195mm). Title printed in red and black, this being a variant omitting date and with a large rectangular woodcut 94 x 167mm, the date supplied by a later stamp at foot of title, woodcut printer's device on verso of final leaf, numerous woodcuts throughout, coloured by a contemporary hand (woodcuts on H2v and H3r uncoloured, two long repaired tears to K5 120mm and 80mm in length and repaired on verso with loss of a few letters, tiny marginal hole in cc6, lower marginal corners of a4 and Aa6 chipped and repaired, light spotting and soiling throughout, slightly heavier to the central gatherings). Contemporary blind stamped pigskin (rubbed, the lower cover more heavily affected and scored, one clasp defective). Provenance: Carl Ehinger von Balzheim (inscription on front free endpaper dated 1615 recording that the book was a gift to the new [unidentified] owner – Kaspa [sic] Graf von Westerndorf (inscription dated 1816).