MAGNI, Jacobus (d. 1415 or 1422). Sophologium. [Basel: Johann Solidi (Schilling), not after 29 September 1473].
Chancery 2o (280 x 195 mm). Collation: [1-1610 178] table, 1/3r text, 17/7v-8v blank). 166 leaves (of 168, sheet 16/5.6 not supplied by the printer, its place taken by a contemporary blank sheet of north Italian paper watermarked with a bull's head surmounted by a flower with a cross below). Bearer type on 1/2v and 17/7v. 38 lines, double column. Type: 1:98G. 1- to 4- and 8-line initial spaces. Initials, paragraph marks and capital strokes in red, evidence of early manuscript signatures. (Some light dampstaining, 2 minor marginal repairs, small wormhole.)
Binding: contemporary German deerskin dyed pink over unbevelled wooden boards, bound at Trier, at the monastery of St. Matthew the Apostle, sides panelled with intersecting fillets with a saltire at center, compartments filled with unicorn, Maria scroll, eagle, lion, leaf, and rosette tools (Schwenke-Sammlung Einhorn 42, Schrift 376, Adler 448, ?Lamm 42), two early paper spine labels, two brass fore-edge catches (without clasps), contemporary leather index tabs, vellum manuscript pastedowns, the front a 14th-century liturgical leaf with German neumes on 4-line staves, the rear a 15th-century document, a quire of 6 original flyleaves at front from a northeastern French mill marked with a gothic Y, similar to Briquet 9173-85 (worn, with some leather missing); modern buckram solander box.
Provenance: Trier, Augustinian Hermits, monastery of St. Matthew the Apostle: contemporary inscription on front pastedown; the blank sheet provided by its bindery was no doubt meant for copying in manuscript the missing text of 16/5.6 -- 18th-century shelfmarks on first leaf, L.N.255 and St.N.743 -- Clifford Rattey: bookplate; his collection dispersed by Maggs Bros -- Christie's London, 8 December 1982, lot 33 (to Lathrop Harper).
Third edition. The Sophologium is a compendium of wisdom in a variety of fields, including poetry, medicine, and morality. The present edition is one of five works previously assigned to an anonymous Printer of Albertus Magnus, De virtutibus, located at Cologne; Dalbanne and Droz (recently supported by Needham) identified the printer as Johannes Schilling and assigned this group of books to his activity at Basel, based on the addition of new sorts added to his fount, probably cut and cast by the lettercutter Hans Frank (cf. Needham, "William Caxton and his Cologne Partners," Ars Impressoria ... Festgabe für Severin Corsten, 1986, pp. 103-131). A copy in the Annmary Brown Memorial Library has a purchase note dated Michaelmas 1473, and two other copies also bear manuscript dates of 1473.
HC(+Add) 10470*=H 10468?; BMC I, 236 (IB.3861); BSB-Ink M-20; CIBN L-99; Dalbanne & Droz II; Klebs 595.3; Goff M-40.