Plutarchus. Opuscula moralia. Venice, Aldus, 1509. nineteenth-century red morocco gilt
Opuscula LXXXXII. (Venice: in the house of Aldus and Andrea Torresani, March 1509)
4to (281 x 178mm.), text in Greek, woodcut Aldine device on title-page and final verso (otherwise blank), nineteenth-century English red morocco gilt with Aldine device gilt on covers, spine gilt in compartments, gilt edges, slipcase
A CRISP COPY OF THE EDITIO PRINCEPS; THE BOTFIELD COPY. The manuscript source was a thirteenth-century compilation supplemented by readings from another manuscript, and this was considered a good critical edition of the text. The text was mainly prepared by Demetrios Doukas, with assistance from both Erasmus and Girolamo Aleandro. Erasmus subsequently translated the text into Latin for Badius Ascensius. Plutarch's essays were generally known about individually, such as On the education of children which had been translated into Latin early in the fifteenth century, until the publication of this monumental volume.
Plutarch's essays and speeches on moral philosophy are less well known today than his Parallel Lives but they formed around half of his writings; they were of considerable influence on later writers such as Montaigne and Pope. The Aldine Press subsequently printed the Parallel Lives in 1519.
Aldo Manuzio tipografo 103; Edit16 37429; Renouard 1509/1; UCLA 101
Beriah Botfield (1807-1863), of Norton Hall, whose library went to Longleat in 1946, sale, Christie's, 13 June 2002, lot 55
Condition is described in the main body of the cataloguing, where appropriate.
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