JACOBUS DE VORAGINE (c. 1230-1298). Legenda aurea sanctorum, sive Lombardica historia. Strasbourg: [Printer of the 1483 Jordanus de Quedlinburg (Georg Husner)], c. 12 May 1496.
Chancery 2o (283 x 200mm). Collation: 1-2 a-z A-E8.6 F-I6.8 K-M6 N8 (1/1 title, verso blank, 1/2r tabula, a1r text, N7v colophon, N8 blank). 263 leaves (of 264, without final blank). 46 lines, double column. Type: 1:160G, 2:91a. Opening 6-line initial in interlocking blue and red, other initials and capital strokes in red. (Small wormholes at beginning and end, faint browning, very occasional small stains.) Contemporary Nuremberg blind-stamped calf over wooden boards by the Nuremberg Chronicle bindery [Kyriss 117], sides tooled with dragon, pierced heart, trellis, rosette and other tools [Schwenke-Sammlung Greif 38, Herz 99, etc], title lettered at top of upper cover, remains of fore-edge clasps (rebacked, repaired at edges). Provenance: Jo. Stadtmair (contemporary inscription on top fore-edge) -- early annotations on title; marginal annotation on Emperor Diocletian washed.
A HANDSOME COPY, PRESERVED IN A CONTEMPORARY NUREMBERG BINDING, OF ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL WORKS OF THE MIDDLE AGES, THE LIVES OF SAINTS OR GOLDEN LEGEND, COMPOSED AROUND 1260 BY THE DOMINICAN FRIAR, JACOBUS DE VORAGINE.
The immense popularity of this work relating the lives and martyrdoms of early saints is indicated by its survival in over one thousand medieval manuscripts. In the first fifty years after the invention of printing, it is known in over 150 editions which appeared across Europe, including in translations into the vernacular. This edition is a page-for-page reprint of that of February 1489, which in turn is a reprint of the 19 December 1486 edition.
The sequence of saints follows the cycle of the ecclesiastical year, and a table of contents and paratextual material serve as aids to looking up a particular saint. Jacobus also explains the liturgy, feast days and ecclesiastical traditions. The contemporary Nuremberg binding and extensive contemporary inscription in Latin suggest a first owner in Franconia, Germany.
C 6467; BMC I 146 (IB. 1926); GW M11287; Bod-inc J-057; BSB-Ink. I-102; IDL 2580; VB 2463; Goff J-133.