MELANCTHON, Philip. Commentarius de anima. Wittemberg: (Petrus Seitz, 1540). [bound with:]
MELANCTHON, Philip. De officio principum, quod mandatum Dei praecipiat eis tollere abusus ecclesiasticos. [Wittemberg: Joseph Klug, 1539].
Epistola de miseria, curatorum seu plebanorum, aeditus anno, 1489. Cum praefatione D. Mart. Luth. Wittemberg: [Nicolaus Schirlentz], 1540.
MELANCTHON, Philip. De ecclesiae autoritate, de veterum scriptis libellus. Wittemberg: [Joseph Klug], 1539.
4 works in one volume, 8° (145 x 94mm). Titles within varying woodcut borders, a few woodcut initials, first and last works with final blank. (Third work lacks final blank, library stamp removed from title of first work, brown oilstain in lower fore-corners of last few leaves, a little very minor discolouration). Contemporary German blindstamped pigskin over wooden boards, roll-border round sides enclosing 2 full-length portraits, that on the lower cover with initials HI, metal clasps (a little rubbed). Provenance: Gabel Schäub (contemporary signature on an endpaper and marginalia in the first work); marginalia in two or three other hands in the same work, contemporary to mid-17th century.
First Wittemberg editions and perhaps the first edition of Melancthon's De anima (other editions appeared in the same year in Strassburg and Paris), one of the most popular of his non-controversial works and important for being one of the first books in which the mind, or spirit, is deemed worthy of scientific study. It is interesting to note that it was Melancthon who coined the word 'psychologia'. This work, however, is not just about the mind, but deals generally with human physiology, the senses, the humours and various abstract ideas, immortality, free will, the intellect, etc. The other two works by Melancthon concern abuses by the clergy. The anonymous Epistola de miseria curatorum warns young would-be clerics of the hardships and miseries of an ecclesiastical life. I. Adams M1106; this edition not in Wellcome or Durling. II, III, IV. Not in Adams.