Monstrorum Historia cum paralipomenis historiae omnium animalium....
Bologna, Typis N. Tebaldini, 1642. 2 parts bound in one. Folio (348 x 240mm). pp. (6), 747, (28); pp. 159, (1), (6). With engraved title and 477 woodcuts, many full-page. Later full calf, spine with red gilt lettered label.
First edition. An encyclopaedic study of monsters and monstrosities, the first treatise on teratology (although published more than 70 years after it was written) and the greatest illustrated work on the subject of the seventeenth century. The 'monsters' illustrated and described include human, animal, and botanical deformities, as well as celestial prodigies (comets, aurorae, etc.). There is a section on fetal development and deformity and a series of inter-uterine illustrations of difficult presentations. There is also a section on monsters of mythology and antiquity, including a series of illustrations of Egyptian objects depicting various animal-headed deities. The second part contains an appendix, the Paralipomena, by Bartolomei Ambrosini, Aldrovandi's successor as director of the Bologna botanic gardens. The present work is the final volume of Aldrovandi's complete Opera, published in 13 volumes. A massive encyclopaedia of the natural world based upon the specimens and drawings of natural history objects in Aldrovandi's museum in Bologna, the first true natural history museum. This is the largest assembly of natural history illustrations to be published before the eighteenth century. Many of the illustrations were the work of the outstanding artist Jacopo Ligozzi, and the originals are still to be found in Bologna, and have recently been made available online. Aldrovandi (1522-1605), the great Bolognan naturalist, was inspired to study natural history by meeting Guillaume Rondelet in Rome, where Aldrovandi was obliged to go to defend himself against charges of heresy. 'Rondelet was then gathering material for his work on fishes. Aldrovandi, who accompanied the French physician to fish markets in order to study the various species, finally decided to study natural history, and began collecting specimens for his own museum. He was the creator and first director of the botanic gardens of the University of Bologna, in which was placed his library and natural history museum, one of the earliest of its kind. He is credited with having ‘formed one of the first herbaria as we know them today. His was an outstanding zoological and botanical intelligence, and it was unfortunate that he died before much of his work was published' (Hunt catalogue). Some occasional very light dampstaining at the lower right corner. Nissen ZBI, 74.
Item nr. 9459
The price shown does not include 6% V.A.T. As a result of the EU legislation we are required to charge our EU customers 6% V.A.T., unless they possess a V.A.T. registration number.