BARTHOLOMAEUS ANGLICUS. [De proprietatibus rerum]. - El libro de prop[r]ietatibus rerum. Translated into Spanish by Vicente de Burgos. Toulouse: Henricus Mayer, 18 September 1494.
2o (279 x 208 mm). Collation: a6; 2a-m8 n-o6; A-H8; I-M8; aa6 bb-ee8 ff6; gg6 hh-oo8 pp4. 312 leaves (of 320, lacking a1-6 [title and table], 2a1 [beginning of text] and mm5; title supplied in printed facsimile, the remaining in manuscript on three leaves). 46 lines and headline. Text in 2 columes, table in 3 columns, prologue in single-column. Gothic types 6:280 (title), 7:140 (headlines, headings on a2r-a1r), 8:101G (text). 4-line woodcut initials, printer's device (Meyer 183) at end. Wooduct on title (facsimile), 17 page-width woodcuts (16 blocks, one repear [D3v=G8v]), several diagrammatic woodcuts in text. 2f6v with drawing in an 18th-century hand in lower margin. (Some pale dampstaining, a few occasional stains, worm track in several gatherings at center not affecting letters.) 18th-century mottled vellum (some slight soiling, text block cracking at center). Provenance: Don A. Canovas del Castillo (bookplate).
THE ONLY SPANISH INCUNABLE EDITION of this great encyclopedia of the Middle Ages. Toulouse was the gateway to the Pyrenees and produced a number of Spanish books for export in the fifteenth century. Henricus Mayer, a German like his three predecessors in Toulouse, started printing there circa 1484. His edition of Bartholomaeus Anglicus was his last signed work, and certainly his most ambitious. By the end of 1493, Mayer had purchased the paper for the edition and hired a compositor. The work took longer than expected and Mayer was unable to settle with the paper merchant two months after publication, causing the printer to take 700 copies in pledge of the debt. A final mention of Mayer appears in April 1501 after he had sold his printing material to Parix. RARE: according to American Book Prices Current, the only copies sold at auction in the last 30 years are the Sexton (8 April 1991) and Schaefer (1 November 1995) copies. BMC VIII, 360; Goff B-150; GW 3424; HC 2523; Klebs 152.1; Polain 508.