3 December 2007
DÜRER, Albrecht (1471-1528). Della simmetria de i corpi humani. Translated by G. P. Gallucci. Venice: Domenico Nicolini, 1591.
2o (302 x 215mm). Nicolini's device on title and colophon leaf. One folding woodcut plate and 3 double-page woodcut plates on 3 leaves (one inserted at quire Q), woodcut illustrations throughout (folding plate repaired on verso). (Old paper repairs to a few leaves, internal tear to D2, some marginal soiling and waterstaining, particularly affecting quires P and Q, Z2 with hole at upper corner caused by paper fault.) Modern vellum-backed boards (spine torn).
FIRST EDITION OF GALLUCCI'S ITALIAN TRANSLATION with the addition of a fifth book. The woodcuts are copied from the first edition, posthumously published at Nuremberg in 1528 as Vier Bücher von menschlicher Proportion. Dürer's third book, it was the synthesis of his belief that beauty was related to mathematical proportion, and in it he makes the height of the human body the basic measurement of form. Books I and II treat the mathematical and geometrical construction of forms; books III and IV consider the problems of variation and movement, leading to difficult and intricate considerations of spatial geometry, and finally the construction of his famous 'cube man'. Adams D-1055; Cicognara 321; Durling/NLM 1299; Wellcome II, 1920.
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