SELENUS, Gustavus (pseud., AUGUSTUS II, Duke of Braunschweig-Luneberg]. Cryptomenytices et cryptographiae libri IX. Luneberg: Johann and Heinrich Stern, 1624.
2° (298 x 184mm). Letterpress title with engraved pictorial border, half title. Typeset music, leaves Q3, Q4, Q5 and Ee1 folding. 3 engraved illustrations, 2 by Lucas Kilian and Wolf Kilian, one full-page, folding letterpress table, woodcut illustrations, diagrams, head- and tailpieces, and initials. (A few leaves lightly browned.) Bound in a vellum leaf from a 15th-century German choir book, with initials and decorations in red, staves ruled in red with Hufnagelschrift neumes, yapp fore-edges, modern red morocco-backed box by Sangorski and Sutcliffe (slightly marked, upper board and spine torn causing minor loss). Provenance: Christoph, Abbot of the Cistercian Abbey of Loccum, Germany (bookplate); J.C. Böhmer, 1702 (?the medical historian Justus Christopher Böhmer, flyleaf inscription, noting its sale at auction in Olden[?]burg, 1751); I H G (initials on flfyleaf); Radcliffe Observatory, Oxford (small inkstamps).
'OUVRAGE FORT RARE, DE LA PLUS GRANDE IMPORTANCE' (Bibliotheca esoterica). Not only does Cryptomenytices cover many aspects of codes and cryptography, but its engraved title page also, according to Sir Edwin Durning-Lawrence, provided the first clue of Bacon's authorship of Shakespeare's plays in the form of pictorial puns, a theory expanded in his pamphlet Bacon is Shakespeare (London: 1914). Bibliotheca esoterica 163; Brunet V, 270 ('ouvrage curieux'); Caillet 10114 ('manque à la Bib. Natle').