PSELLUS, Michael (1018-1078). De victus ratione. Translated by Giorgius Valla (1447-99). - MARSCHALK, Nicolaus (1470-1525). In Psellum de natura ciborum. Erfurt: Wolfgang Schenck, 1499.
Chancery 4° (206 x 140mm). Collation: A-B6 a-c4 (A1r title, A2r Valla's dedication to Doge Agostino Barbarigo, A2v Psellus's dedication to Emperor Constantine, text, B6r colophon and printer's device, a1r title to 2nd work, a1v address to Peter Eberbach, a2r text). 24 leaves. 34 lines. Type: 1:86.R, 86. Greek. 2- and 3-line initials and paragraph signs in red. (Browned.) Modern vellum, 2 ribbon ties. Provenance: a few early marginal notes and underlinings.
FIRST EDITION of Psellus's rare work on food, its preparation, nutrition, and health benefits. A teacher of Neoplatonic philosophy, Psellus was instrumental in preserving some works of Iamblichus, Proclus, and one version of the Corpus Hermeticum through his compendia of science and theology. The early German humanist Nicolaus Marschalk composed the dictionary of specialised vocabulary and commentary which accompanies the work. He was responsible for the systematic introduction into Germany of Greek-language texts, culminating in the 1502 publication of his edition of Greek poetry.
Schenck's first dated book, the first use of his Greek type, and ONE OF THE FEW BOOKS PRINTED WITH GREEK TYPES IN 15TH-CENTURY GERMANY. After scattered Greek words used in the Mainz Ciceros in 1465-6, Greek did not reappear in printed books in German-speaking countries until 1486 at Basel, followed by Koberger at Nuremberg in 1492, and by Schenck -- certainly at the instigation of Marschalk -- at Erfurt. Proctor (Printing of Greek pp.138-9) cites the first appearance of Schenck's Greek types in his Kanzelaibuechlein of 1500, apparently unaware of the earlier De victus ratione. RARE; not in the British Library, only one copy in America. H 13535; BSB-Ink. P-855; Klebs 811.1; Wellcome 5269; Goff P-1080.