VITRUVIUS POLLIO, Marcus. De architectura. Edited by Fra Giovanni Giocondo (1433-1515). Venice: Giovanni Tacuino, 22 May 1511.
2o (304 x 211 mm). Collation: AA4; A-N8 O6; P10. 124 leaves, P10 blank (the register on P9r incorrectly calls quire O quaternus). Roman type, a few words in Greek, shoulder notes, index at end in triple column. Four-piece decorative woodcut title border with scrolling foliage and dolphin motifs, 136 woodcut illustrations and diagrams in the text, most within double rule borders, printer's device on P9v (Kristeller 326), one 9-line and ten 7-line woodcut initials. THE INITIALS FINELY ILLUMINATED BY HAND in gold, green, blue and red with white penwork infill, illuminated coat-of-arms at foot of the opening text page, within a circular wreath, framed on either side by curling penwork decoration with gold dots and flowers in pink, green, red and blue. 19th-century green morocco gilt, edges gilt. Provenance: Unidentified illuminated coat-of-arms.
FIRST ILLUSTRATED EDITION. The three previous editions (see lots 342-345) contained a few schematic woodcut diagrams, but this Tacuino edition is the first to be extensively illustrated with woodcuts of architectural details and plans, machinery in use, etc. Tacuino's woodcut title border with dolphins, "one of the most influential pieces of ornamentation of the sixteenth century" (Mortimer), was apparently printed here for the first time. This edition, dedicated to Pope Julius II, was edited by the Veronese architect, epigraphist and editor Fra Giovanni Giocondo, who during the last year of his life collaborated with Raphael and Sangallo on St. Peter's after Bramante's death in 1514.
A FINE COPY. Adams V-902; Berlin Kat. 1798; Cicognara 696; Essling 1702; Fowler 393; Harvard/Mortimer Italian 543; Millard Italian 156; Norman 2157; Sander 7694.