La Natura e Cultura dei Fiori fisicamente esposta in due trattati.
Cosmopoli 1771. 2 volumes. 4to (235 x 180mm). pp. viii, 440; viii, 416; 167, (1), (8), with 65 folding engraved plates. Contemporary vellum, gilt decorated spines with red gilt lettered label.
Second edition, probably a reissue of the first 1767-1768 Palermo edition, as it has the same number of pages. One of the rare Italian florilegia, illustrated by the author and Mario Cammareri. Both their signatures appear together in the first engraving, an allegory showing Flora, crowned with a garland of flowers, offering floral tributes to three figures - Botany (shown holding an alembic), Physics (who is looking through a magnifying glass) and Pomona (who holds a spade and a basket of fruit). "Arena states in the introduction of the first volume of his work that it was intended not only for 'florists' but for scientists too, in particular 'botanists, physicists and agriculturists'... The second volume deals with horticulture, in particular flowers. In the first sixty pages Arena describes in considerable details how to set up a flower-garden" (An Oak Spring Flora, pp.149-150). The delicately engraved plates illustrate several plant species and varieties, with one plate of parterres, and one plate of seeds, floral structures etc. Filippo Arena (1708-1789) was a Sicilian jesuit, mathematician and botanist at various Jesuit colleges: at Viterbo, and as professor of mathematics at the Jesuit college in Malta, later at the Collegio Imperial di Palermo. The printer's town Cosmopoli is an imaginary one, see Parenti 'Luoghi di stampa falsi' page 66 and is most propably Palermo as the first edition. A fine copy. Provenance: bookplate of Conte Francesco Rusteghello. Bunyard, "Some Early Italian Gardening Books", JRHS, 1923, pp. 183-184; Nissen BBI, 48.
Item nr. 9855
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