Priscian Priscianus Opera 1476 Incunabula Institutiones Grammaticae Situ Orbisnr For Sale

OFFERED WITH is THE BEAUTIFUL AND HIGHLY DESIRABLE 1476 EDITION OF THE COMPLETE WORKS OF PRISCIAN (PRISCIANUS CAESARIENSIS), printed in roman type at Venice in chancery folio by Marcus de Comitibus and Gerardus Alexandrinus, with spaces for capitals throughout (with guide letters present), COMPRISING THE COMPLETE ‘INSTITUTIONES GRAMMATICAE,’ WHICH IS ARGUABLY THE MOST IMPORTANT CLASSICAL LATIN GRAMMAR, ALSO INCLUDING PRISCIAN’S VERSE TRANSLATION OF DIONYSIUS PARIEGETES’ ‘DE SITU ORBIS,’ PRISCIAN’S EXPOSITION OF THE FIRST 12 LINES OF VERGIL’S ‘AENEIS,’ AND NUMEROUS OTHER WORKS, constituting one of only two extant works printed by Gerardus Alexandrinus, BEAUTIFULLY BOUND IN FULL 18TH CENTURY MOROCCO RICHLY GILT, AND COMPLETE IN ALL RESPECTS SAVE THE INITIAL BLANK LEAF (I.E. IT CONTAINS ALL TEXT LEAVES AND 349 LEAVES IN TOTAL). The volume may be referenced as BMC v 242 and Goff P965. THIS 1476 PRISCIAN IS EXTREMELY SCARCE ON THE MARKET. AS FAR AS I CAN DETERMINE, IT HAS SOLD ONLY AT sale ONLY TWICE SINCE 1980.

PROVENANCE: .1 The volume once formed part of the Bibliotheca Hultmanniana, formed by Carolus Gerardus Hultman (1752-1820). It was undoubtedly Hultman who commissioned the volume’s binding. The catalogue of the Bibliotheca Hultmanniana was printed by H. Palier et Filium in 1821. The present volume is number 129 in the catalogue, and the bookplate of the Bibliotheca Hultmanniana is present on the front endpaper. The ink ‘CH’ stamp of Carolus Hultman appears on the front free endpapers. 2. An unidentified ink stamp appears in the outer margin of the recto of leaf a2. This probably dates from the 19th century. 3. During the 20th century, the volume formed part of the library at the Monastery of Mount Saint Alphonsus in New York State. The Mt. St. Alphonsus Library stamp appears on the front free endpaper and a card stating the Library’s rules appears on the rear endpaper.

The opening of the incipit leaf reads as follows:

“Iuliano Consuli ac Patricio Priscianus Salutem … [This is Priscian’s dedication to the Consul Julian].”

The colophon reads as follows:

“Impressum Venetiis impensis Marci de Comitibus ficuuq; eius Girardi Alexandrini. Anno domini M.CCCC.LXXVI [1476].”

PRISCIAN’S WORKS ARE OF GREAT IMPORTANCE IN AT LEAST THREE RESPECTS:

FIRST, THE ‘INSTITUTIONES GRAMMATICAE’ WAS PROBABLY THE MOST FREQUENTLY USED FOR INSTRUCTION DURING THE MIDDLE AGES AND THE RENAISSANCE. AS SUCH, IT IS A MAJOR REASON WHY OUR KNOWLEDGE OF CLASSICAL LATIN IS SO THOROUGH;

SECOND, PRISCIAN AUTHORED ONE OF THE FINEST EXEGESES OF VIRGIL IN HIS WORK ON THE FIRST TWELVE LINES OF THE AENEID;

THIRD, PRISCIAN’S WORKS HAVE ALLOWED THE SURIVIAL OF NUMEROUS MINOR AUTHORS AND RELATIVELY MINOR WORKS FROM CLASSICAL ANTIQUITY;

FOURTH, PRISCIAN’S VERSE TRANSLATION OF ‘DE SITU ORBIS’ BY DIONYSIUS PARIEGETES IS INCLUDED IN THE 1476 EDITION BEING OFFERED HERE.

Priscianus Caesariensis (fl. 500 AD), commonly known as Priscian, was a Latin grammarian. He wrote the Institutiones grammaticae ("Grammatical Foundations") on the subject. This work was the standard textbook for the study of Latin during theMiddle Ages and provided the raw material for the field of speculative grammar.

The details of Priscian's life are largely unknown. Priscian was of Greek descent, and was born and raised in Caesarea (modernCherchell, Algeria) the capital of the Roman province of Mauretania Caesariensis. According to Cassiodorus, he taught Latin atConstantinople. Priscian's minor works include a panegyric to Anastasius (491—518), written about 512, which helps establish his time period. In addition, the manuscripts of his Institutiones grammaticae contain a subscription to the effect that the work was copied (526, 527) by Flavius Theodorus, a clerk in the imperial secretariat.

Priscian's most famous work, the Institutiones grammaticae, is a systematic exposition of Latin grammar. The dedication to Julian probably indicates the consul and patrician, not the author of a well-known epitome of Justinian's Novellae, who lived somewhat later than Priscian. The grammar is divided into eighteen books, of which the first sixteen deal mainly with sounds, word-formation and inflexions; the last two, which form from a fourth to a third of the whole work, deal with syntax.

Priscian's grammar is based on the earlier works of Herodian and Apollonius. The examples it includes to illustrate the rules preserve numerous fragments from Latin authors which would otherwise have been lost, including Ennius, Pacuvius, Accius, Lucilius, Cato and Varro. But the authors whom he quotes most frequently are Virgil, and, next to him,Terence, Cicero, Plautus; then Lucan, Horace, Juvenal, Sallust, Statius, Ovid, Livy and Persius.

The grammar was quoted by several writers in Britain of the 8th century - Aldhelm, Bede, Alcuin - and was abridged or largely used in the next century by Hrabanus Maurus of Fulda and Servatus Lupus of Ferrières. About a thousand manuscripts exist, all ultimately derived from the copy made by Theodorus. Most copies contain only books I—XVI (sometimes called Priscianus major), some include only (with the three books Ad Symmachum) books XVII and XVIII. (Priscianus minor), and a few contain both parts. The earliest manuscripts are from the 9th century, though a few fragments are somewhat earlier.

Priscian's minor works include the following:

1. Three treatises dedicated to Symmachus (the father-in-law of Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius): on weights and measures; on the metres of Terence; and thePraeexercitamina, a translation into Latin of Greek rhetorical exercises from Hermogenes.

2. De nomine, pronomine, et verbo ("On noun, pronoun, and verb"), an abridgment of part of his Institutiones for teaching grammar in schools

3. Partitiones xii. versuum Aeneidos principalium: another teaching aid, using question and answer to dissect the first twelve lines of the Aeneid. The metre is discussed first, each verse is scanned, and each word thoroughly and instructively examined.

4. The poem on Anastasius mentioned above, in 312 hexameters with a short iambic introduction

5. A verse translation into 1087 hexameters of Dionysius's Periegesis, or geographical survey of the world.

SAVE THE OPENING LEAF, THE VOLUME IS IN EXCELLENT CONDITION INTERNALLY, with clean pages, clear print and ample margins throughout. There is a very slight dampstain in the upper gutter margin, not affecting the text. The opening leaf (A2) has been cropped at the outer margin with the end of each line expertly supplied in manuscript that very nearly matches the font of the printed letters. Leaves a3 through c5 show slight rubbing and a very slight stain in the upper outer corner, not affecting the text. Leaf rr3 is dust-soiled and leaf r10 shows a small puncture and repair. Considered generally the volume is quite clean and very pleasing, as shown by the photos below.

The 18th century binding of red morocco is richly gilt upon the spine and the boards. The binding is in good to very good condition, with the hinges cracked and weakened but holding by the cords, with the book-block very strong, and with moderate wear at the edges and corners of the boards and spine. The original 18th century red morocco spine label has been retained, although it is chipped along its outer edge (as may be seen in the photos below). The volume measures about 28.5 cm by 21 cm by 5.5 cm; each leaf measures about 270 mm by 190 mm.

As stated above, THE VOLUME IS COMPLETE IN ALL RESPECTS SAVE THE OPENING BLANK. IT THEREFORE COMPRISES 349 LEAVES. THE COMPLETE TEXT OF THIS 1476 EDITION IS PRESENT.

In all, this is a very rare, important and pleasing example of THE BEAUTIFUL AND HIGHLY DESIRABLE 1476 EDITION OF THE COMPLETE WORKS OF PRISCIAN (PRISCIANUS CAESARIENSIS), printed in roman type at Venice in chancery folio by Marcus de Comitibus and Gerardus Alexandrinus, with spaces for capitals throughout (with guide letters present), COMPRISING THE COMPLETE ‘INSTITUTIONES GRAMMATICAE,’ WHICH IS ARGUABLY THE MOST IMPORTANT CLASSICAL LATIN GRAMMAR, ALSO INCLUDING PRISCIAN’S VERSE TRANSLATION OF DIONYSIUS PARIEGETES’ ‘DE SITU ORBIS,’ PRISCIAN’S EXPOSITION OF THE FIRST 12 LINES OF VERGIL’S ‘AENEIS,’ AND NUMEROUS OTHER WORKS, constituting one of only two extant works printed by Gerardus Alexandrinus, BEAUTIFULLY BOUND IN FULL 18TH CENTURY MOROCCO RICHLY GILT, COMPLETE IN ALL RESPECTS SAVE THE INITIAL BLANK LEAF (I.E. IT CONTAINS ALL TEXT LEAVES AND 349 LEAVES IN TOTAL), and OFFERED WITH .

Please take the time necessary to review the photos below in order to gain a better understanding of the content and condition of the volume. Please also take a moment to view my other sales of rare and desirable English and Continental printed books dating from the 15th through the 19th century.

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We charge for shipment of international orders.  We try to ship using USPS flat rate priority-mail boxes and we charge for shipment at cost or slightly below. Small 12mo books are shipped for USD 20.00. The cost of shipment for any book in Octavo, Quarto or small folio format is USD 45.00. The cost of shipment for large folios or quartos of equivalent size is USD 58.00. Multiple folio volumes and sets are, of course, generally more expensive and the cost of their shipment will always be quoted in the listing. With all of our sales if an individual client wins multiple books we charge only charge for the shipment of one book and cover the cost of shipment of the rest. Please note that mobile devices do not yet display correctly the shipment costs for international customers. Please enquire or consult the non-mobile site in order to obtain complete information concerning the cost of shipment.

 

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Priscian Priscianus Opera 1476 Incunabula Institutiones Grammaticae Situ Orbisnr

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