HORTUS SANITATIS. Mainz: Jacob Meydenbach, 23 June 1491.
Super-chancery 2° (303 x 212mm). Collation: A-C8 D-Z6.8 a-m6.8 n8 o-t6.8 v-z6.8 \\i8 aa-hh6.8 ii-ll6 \kc\K8 2v6 2A8 2B-E6 (A1r xylographic general title, A1v woodcut, A2r prologue, De herbis, m8v blank, n1r section title, n1v woodcut, n2r De animalibus, v1r section title, v1v woodcut, v2r De avibus, \\i8v woodcut, aa1 De piscibus, ee2v woodcut, ee3r De lapidibus, \kc\K1r section title, \kc\K1v woodcut, \kc\K2r De urinis, 2v6v woodcut, 2A1r table, 2E5v printer's epilogue, colophon, 2E6 blank). 310 (of 454) leaves, 119 leaves supplied from at least 2 other, shorter copies, A1 supplied in later pen-and-ink replica. Please apply to department for specific leaves lacking or supplied. 48 lines and headline, double column, table in 3 columns. Type: 155G, 92G. Approximately 790 (of 1073) woodcuts, initial spaces, many with guide-letters. Initials and paragraph marks in red, woodcuts on 3 supplied leaves with early hand-colouring. (Three leaves very defective, 5 leaves torn with loss, a few leaves with crude repairs, some browning and staining, fore-edges darkened.) 19th-century speckled calf (rubbed, rebacked). FIRST EDITION of 'perhaps the most important medical woodcut book printed before 1500' (Hunt I, 8). The Hortus sanitatis is a greatly expanded Latin version of the Gart der Gesundheit, compiled by Johann Wonnecke von Kaub (fl.1430-1503/4) and printed by Schoeffer in 1485. In particular the parts on animals, birds, fishes, stones and minerals have been substantially enlarged from their brief treatment in the Gart der Gesundheit into full sections. The woodcuts are copied in part from Schoeffer's herbal (more directly from Grüninger's 1485/86 reprint -- see Arnim, Schäfer 170), but new designs have been added to the supplementary sections, increasing the number to over 1000. The Hortus sanitatis is the first book printed by Meydenbach. HC *8944; BMC I, 44 (IB. 343-4); BSB H-388; Schreiber 4247; Schramm XV, p.7; Early Herbals 45; Klebs (Hortus 1; Davies, Murray German 193; Goff H-486.