GERARD, JOHN. The Herball or Generall Historie of Plantes...Very much Enlarged and Amended by Thomas Johnson... London: Adam Islip, Joice Norton, and Richard Whitakers, 1633. Folio, 341 x 212 mm., modern rough calf (suede), gilt-lettered morocco spine label, covers somewhat bowed; title browned and laid down, some margins reinforced at end in The Table of Vertues, marginal browning throughout, scattered staining. Second edition, first Johnson edition, engraved architectural title by John Payne showing Theophrastus and Dioscorides, Ceres and Pomona (Johnson, Title-pages, p. 50; Payne no. 9), approximately 2800 woodcuts in text, numerous woodcut initials. Henrey 155; Hunt 223; Nissen BBI 698; STC 11751.
First edition of Thomas Johnson's expanded version of Gerard's Herball. Although Johnson was obliged to produce the edition in a hurry, as the printers wished to publish it before John Parkinson could issue his announced second great work, the Theatrum botanicum (which did not appear until 1640), he managed to achieve a considerably improved edition over Gerard's 1597 edition. As was the case with the first edition, the woodblocks were acquired from abroad, this time from Plantin, who had used them for his editions of Dodoens, de l'Écluse, and Lobel (a few of the smaller woodcuts may thus have in fact originated in England, with Thomas Purfoot's edition of Pena and Lobel's Stirpium adversaria nova, Plantin having purchased the woodblocks in 1580).
Provenance: Joseph Hawkes, inscription on Johnson's dedication -- Mrs. John Maseker, signatures on front flyleaf -- E.H. Bentall Heybridge, inscription on title (dated 1834) -- Kenneth K. Mackenzie; Horticultural Society of New York, bookplate.