HERBAL, English. The grete herball whiche gyveth parfyt knowlege and understandyng of all maner of herbes & theyr gracyous vertues which god hath ordeyned for our prosperous welfare and helth for they hele & cure all maner of dyseases and sekenesses that fall or mysfortune to all maner of creatures of god created practysed by many expert and wyse maysters as Avicenna & other &c. Also it gyueth parfyte understandynge of the booke lately prynted by me (Peter treueris) named the noble experie[n]ce of vertuous handwarke of surgery. [Colophon:] "Imprynted at London in Southwarke by me Peter Treueris..." 17 March 1529.
Chancery folio, 261 x 175mm. (10 5/16 x 7in.), calf antique by Riviere & Son, title soiled and tightly bound touching eight letters in the gutter which is slightly torn in three places, text panel of title and lower right corner of woodcut with some paper and ink restoration, upper outer corners of the following five leaves of tables restored catching a few letters, I3 and 4 inserted from another copy and with restoration to upper margins, some slight dampstaining to the last 12 leaves, lacks blank leaf 6, slight tear in R3.
Collation: A-Z Aa-Ee . 173 leaves (of 174, lacks blank 6). Black letter, 93mm. 43 lines. Double column. Title printed in red and black with large pictorial woodcut of a garden scene with figures (128 x 169mm.), large pictorial woodcut "woodwose" device of Peter Treveris on final page [McKerrow 60], and 479 impressions of 44 smaller woodcuts of plants, animals and genre scenes [Hodnett's "Grete Herball 65 x 60 series", nos. 2419-2463 for these and the title cut], pictorial and ornamental woodcut initials and other ornaments.
Second edition of the first illustrated English herbal and much rarer than Treveris's 1526 edition (Banckes's Herbal, of ca. 1525 was not illustrated). "With the exception of the preface and the treatise on urines, the Grete Herball is a translation of the French Grant Herbier or Arbolayre."--Hunt. The last copy to appear at auction was the Robin Howard copy (sale, Sotheby's London, 1 March 1976, lot 99), lacking three leaves.
Henrey 169; Hunt 25 (1526 edition, but see note referring to this copy); Nissen BBI 2297; STC 13177 (locating eight copies, excluding this copy, two of them imperfect).
Provenance: Juan Carlos Ahumada, bookplate and ink-stamp; the present owner.