CICERO, Marcus Tullius (106-43 B.C.). Epistolae familiares, with commentary by Paulus Manutius. Venice: Aldine Press, 1579.
2° (315 x 213mm). Woodcut portrait of Aldus Manutius on title, engraved portrait of Paulus Manutius on title verso, woodcut headpieces and initials, roman and italic types. (Some browning, stains in a few leaves.) 18th-century sheep, rebacked with red morocco, green leather spine labels (endpapers renewed). Provenance: Bibliothecae S. Theresiae, Placentiae (stamp).
With a priced list Aldine publications then currently available printed on the final recto, a leaf recorded by Renouard as blank. The Aldine press had issued 4 separately printed catalogues of its work between 1498 and about 1526, and from 1581 under the direction of Nicolas Manassi it became the first publisher to use its own publications to advertise remaining, unsold stock. According to Renouard and others, the first publication with such a list was the Declaratio of 1586 (Renouard 237:1). The catalogue in the present 1579 Cicero may be dated to early 1588 based on the publications it lists, almost ten years after that edition was printed. The 1579, 1582 and 1592 editions of Cicero are virtually indistinguishable, and it is now apparent that there was much overlap between them; the British Library copies with the 1579 title have the same c.1588 publication list at the end, as does the Ahmanson-Murphy copy of the 1592 edition. As a series the catalogues are an invaluable source for indicating sales and prices of Aldine books; the earliest edition on the present list is the 1525 Galen in Greek (also the most expensive at 49 lire, 12 solidi; sold out by 1589). Renouard reproduces a 1592 catalogue, as well as the earlier series, and see also R. Hirsch, "The Art of Selling Books; Notes on Three Aldus Catalogues, 1586-1592", The Bibliographical Society, University of Virginia). Ahmanson-Murphy 915 (catalogue at end present); Renouard 226:5.