4 June 2003
FUCHS, Leonhard (1501-1566). De historia stirpium commentarii insignes. Lyons: Balthazar Arnoullet, 1551.
8° (170 x 105mm). With blank leaf bb8. Arnoullet's sea-horse device (Baudrier 3) on title, woodcut portrait of the author and over 500 woodcuts of plants by C. Boussy in the text, all hand-coloured by a contemporary hand, woodcut initials. (Clean paper-fault tear to bb4, occasional very light browning.) 17th-century French red morocco over pasteboard, covers with triple fillet border, spine in six compartments with raised bands, each compartment outlined in gilt with double fillets, titled in gilt in the second, the others with small centrally-placed vase-of-flowers tool, gilt turn-ins, marbled paste-down, gilt edges (neat repair to head of spine, joints a trifle rubbed), modern cloth slipcase. Provenance: F.C. (early manuscript initials on title) -- M.G. (early manuscript initials on title) -- 19th-century manuscript notes (on front blank, verso of title and numerous plant identifications following the Linnean system).
AN EXPERTLY COLOURED COPY IN A FINE EARLY BINDING. This attractive series of miniature botanical woodcuts, reduced versions of the cuts used in the folio edition published by Isingrin in Basel, was commissioned from Clément Boussy by Balthasar Arnoullet in 1547, and first appeared in his 1549 Lyons edition of the Historia stirpium. Their use was not restricted to pocket editions of this work, but extended to Arnoullet's edition of Fuch's Plantarum effiges (1549); and to the 1550 and 1552 editions of Dioscorides. This edition not in Hunt or Nissen BBI. Adams F-1103; Baudrier X, p. 128.
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