Search Bodleian Incunables:

If your search term consists of multiple words, you can choose how to search:



Bod-Inc: E-022


Epistolae diversorum philosophorum, oratorum, rhetorum (ed. Marcus Musurus) [Latin and Greek].


Analysis of Content

Part I:

*1r [Title-page.]

*1v ‘ Ἐπιστολικοὶ τύποι καὶ ὀνόματα τω̂ν συνταξαμένων τὰς εν τῃ̂δε τῃ̂ βίβλῳ περιεχομένας ἐπιστολάς ’.’ Incipit: ‘ Συνέσιος. Δημοσθένης  . . . ‘’ [List of authors.]

*1v [Verse on the collection, in Greek.] Botfield 243.

*2r ‘Epistolares et nomina eorum qui composuerunt . . . epistolas'. Incipit: ‘Synesius. Demosthenes . . .’

*2r [Verse on the collection, in Latin.] Incipit: ‘`Epistolarum congregatio uirorum doctorum, | Quos priscum produxit ceu rosas tempus . . .’ The 7 iambic trimeters of the preceding page, translated into prose, line by line. Botfield 243.

*2v [Demetrius of Phaleron [pseudo-]]: ‘ Ἐπιστολικοὶ τύποι ’.’ Incipit: ‘ Τω̂ν ἐπιστολικω̂ν τύπων Ἡρακλείδη ἐχόντων τὴν θεωρίαν  . . . ’ Demetrii et Libanii qui feruntur Τύποι ἐπιστολικοί et Ἐπιστολιμαι̂οι χαρακτη̂ρες , ed. V. Weichert (Leipzig, 1910), 1-12, including the two ‘exempla spuria'. The whole volume was edited by Marcus Musurus; see his postscript to part I; on the manuscript used for the edition see S. Follet, ‘Contribution à l'histoire de deux manuscrits de Philostrate (Parisini suppl. gr. 924 et 1256, 1: La transmission de l'héritage d'Alde Manuce', Revue d'histoire des textes, 5 (1975), 1-7, and particularly Martin Sicherl, Griechische Erstausgaben des Aldus Manutius: Druckvorlagen, Stellenwert, kultureller Hintergrund, Studien zur Geschichte und Kultur des Altertums, NF 1 Reihe: Monographien, 10 (Paderborn, 1997), 155-290, who shows how Musurus collected the letters from a wide range of manuscripts, and analyses the background of each group of letters; also Martin Sicherl, ‘Die Aldina der griechischen Epistolographen', Aldus Manutius and Renaissance Culture: Essays in Memory of Franklin D. Murphy, Acts of an International Conference Venice and Florence, 14-17 June 1994, ed. David S. Zeidberg and Fiorella Gioffredi Superbi, Villa I Tatti, The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies, 15 (Florence, 1998), 81-93.

Α1r Synesius: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, ed. Rudolph Hercher (Paris, 1873), 638-738, letters 1-156.

Η1r Demosthenes(?): Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 219-34.

θ6r Plato: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 492-531, letters 1-13.

Μ6v Aristoteles: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 172-4, letters 1-6.

Μ8r Philippus, Rex Macedonum: [Letter addressed to Olympias.] Epistolographi graeci, 466-7, letter 8.

Μ8v Philippus, Rex Macedonum: [Letter addressed to Aristoteles.] Epistolographi graeci, 466, letter 7.

Μ8v Alexander Magnus: [Letter addressed to Aristoteles.] Epistolographi graeci, 98, letter 1.

Μ8v Aristoteles: [Letter addressed to Alexander Magnus.] Epistolographi graeci, 174, letter 6.

Ν1r Hippocrates [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 289-90, 292, letters 1-5, 11-17; on the authorship see W. Putzger, Hippocratis quae feruntur epistolae (Wurzen, 1914).

ξ4v Democritus [pseudo-]: [Letter addressed to Hippocrates.] Epistolographi graeci, 305-6, letter 18.

ξ5r Hippocrates [pseudo-]: [Letter addressed to Democritus.] Epistolographi graeci, 307, letter 20.

ξ5v Heraclitus [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 280-6, letters 1-8; see also Die heraklitischen Briefe, ed. J. Bernays (Berlin, 1869).

Ο3r Diogenes [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 235-44, letters 1-29

Π2r Crates [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 208-10, letters 1-14.

Π4r Anacharsis [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 102-4, letters 1-11, line 19.

Π6v Euripides [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 275-9, letters 1-5.

Ρ2v Theanus [pseudo-]: [Letters addressed to Eubules, Nicostrates, and Callistus.] Epistolographi graeci, 603-6.

Ρ5r Melissa [pseudo-]: [Letter addressed to Cleareta.] Epistolographi graeci, 607-8.

Ρ5v Myia [pseudo-]: [Letter addressed to Phyllis.] Epistolographi graeci, 608.

Ρ6v Alciphron: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 42-67, letters I 1-40, II 1-4.

ΤΤ2v Philostratus: [Preface.] Incipit: ‘ Τὸν ἐπιστολικὸν χαρακτη̂ρα του̂ λόγου μετὰ τοὺς παλαιοὺς, ἄριστάμοι διεσκέφθαι  . . .’ Philostratus, Opera, ed. C. L. Kayser (Leipzig, 1871), 257-8.

ΤΤ3r Philostratus: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 468-87, letters 40-4, 65-6, 49, 45, 67, 48, 73, 68-72, 14, 35, 37, 18, 60, 33, 32, 16, 3, 54, 1 (without the last line), 2, 31, 20, 9, 55, 17, 63, 4, 21, 27, 22, 5, 47, 7, 23, 8, 28, 11, 50, 10, 12, 56, 29, 24-5, 57, 26, 30, 13, 31, 58-9, 15.

Φ2r Theophylactus: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 763-86, letters 1-85; P. Gautier, Théophylacte d'Achrida, II, Lettres, Corpus fontium historiae Byzantinae, 16/2 (Thessalonika, 1986).

ψ6r Aelianus: Ἐπιστολαί .

ω3r Aeneas Sophista Gazeus: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 24-32, letters 1-25.

Α1v Procopius Gazaeus: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 533-53, letters 1-61; 52 and 53 merged, and a lacuna in the text (from μα̂λλον ὁρω̂ in the former to ἢσιωπω̂ντας in the latter) marked with a blank space at the tail of Β7r.

Γ1r Dionysius Antiochenus: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 260-7, letters 1-46.

Γ6v Lysis [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολὴ Ἱππαρχῳ . Epistolographi graeci, 600-1, letter 3.

Γ7v Amasis [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολὴ πρὸς Πολυκράτην . Epistolographi graeci, 100, letter 1.

Γ8r Musonius [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολὴ Πανκρατίδῃ . Epistolographi graeci, 401-4.

Δ2v Musurus, Marcus: [Letter.] Incipit: ‘[ Ὡ ] ς μὲν Ἐνετίῃσι τὸ παρὸν ἐνετυπώθη βιβλίον  . . .’ Botfield 244.

Part II

2Α1r [Title-page.]

2Α1v Manutius Romanus, Aldus Pius: [Letter addressed to] Antonius ‘Codrus' Urceus. Aldo Manuzio editore, 26; see also E. Raimondi, Codro e l'umanesimo a Bologna (Bologna, 1950).

2Α2r Libanius [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Libanius, Opera, 12 vols (Leipzig, 1903-27), vol. XI 562-95, letters 1-22.

2Α7v Basilius Magnus: Ἐπιστολαί . PL XXXII, 112, 1, 293, 151, 135, 20, 16, 4, 211, 12-13, 3, 116, 10, 330, 332-3, 86, 14, 2, 334, and 19.

2Γ6r Chion [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 194-206, letters 1-17.

2Δ8r Aeschines [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 33-43, letters 1-12.

2Ζ1r Isocrates: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 319-33, letters 1, 6, 2-3, 5, 4, 7-8; on each letter and its authenticity see Georges Matthieu, ‘Notice', Isocrates, Discours, ed. Georges Matthieu and Émile Bremme, vol. 4 (Paris, 1962), 163-83.

2θ1r Phalaris [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 409-59, letters 1-148.

2Μ7v Pythagoras [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολή . Epistolographi graeci, 601, letter 2.

2Μ8r Mithridates: Ἐπιστολή . Epistolographi graeci, 177-8, letter 1, preface to the collection of Brutus's letters.

2Μ8v Brutus, Marcus Junius [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 177-91, letters 1-70.

2ξ2r Apollonius Tyanensis [pseudo-]: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 110-30, letters 1-42, 98-105, 43-77, letter 62 omitting the Ψήφισμα Λακεδαιμονίων , 106-9, 111-12.

2Ο5v Julianus Imperator [pseudo-; Procopius Gazaeus]: Ἐπιστολή . Epistolographi graeci, 553-4.

2Ο6r Julianus Imperator (331-63): Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, 337-51, letters 1-8, 10-24.

2Π7r Julianus Imperator: ‘ Νόμος περὶ τω̂ν ἰατρω̂ν ’ [Lex de archiatris]. Incipit: ‘ Τὴν ἰατρικὴν ἐπιστήμεν  . . .’ Iulianus, Epistolae, leges, poemata, fragmenta varia, ed. I. Bidez and F. Cumont (Paris, 1922), no. 75b.

2Π7v Julianus Imperator: Ἐπιστολαί . Epistolographi graeci, letters 25-47.

2σ5v [Colophon.]


Imprint: Venice: Aldus Manutius, 1499. 4°.

Remarks: In two parts, dated: (I) [29] Mar. 1499; (II) [not before 17 Apr. 1499].


Collation: *6 α–σ12 ζη8 θ10 ι–τ8 ττ6 υ–ω Α–Γ8 Δ4; 2α–ε8 2ζη6 2θ–ρ8 2σ6.


ISTC: ie00064000

GW: GW 9367;

Hain: HC *6659;

Goff: Goff E‑64;

BMC: BMC V 560;

Proctor: Pr 5569;

Others: BSB‑Ink E‑86; Hillard 770; Oates 2186-8; 736; Sack, Freiburg, 1367; Scapecchi, ‘Annali', 31; Sheppard 4656-8.

LCN: 14864067


Copy number: E-022(1)

Part II bound first.

Binding: A French sixteenth-century gold-tooled brown calf binding, bound in imitation of a Greek binding by Gommar Estienne; sewn onto four cords, pierced through the edges of beech boards; the visible edges of the boards are grooved; four sets of triple leather thongs, one each at the head and tail, and two at the fore-edge, are set into the lower board, pierced through it to form ties, now wanting, and fastened onto pins, now wanting, on the edge of the upper cover; gilt-edged leaves. Formerly chained in the Bodleian: staple-marks of a hasp at head of upper cover. On both covers a single gilt fillet forms a border and double gilt fillets form a frame; between border and frame the calf is tinted black; an arabesque centre-piece, containing the gilt initials ‘I F', probably for John Fortescue; the arabesque is made up of the following tools, as numbered in [Howard Nixon], Bookbindings from the Library of Jean Grolier: A Loan Exhibition 23 Sept.–31 Oct. 1965 (London, 1965): CP nos 53, 64a, 64b, 65a, 65b, and 69. Nixon ascribes them to Claude de Picques. A. R. A. Hobson, Humanists and Bookbinders: The Origins and Diffusion of the Humanistic Bookbinding, 1449-1559; with a Census of Historiated Plaquette and Medallion Bindings of the Renaissance (Cambridge, 1989) effectively proves that Claude de Picques never bound for Grolier, and that the bindings in Grolier's library ascribed to him are by Jean Picard. Fleeing from his debtors, Picard left Paris in 1547 and his tools were handed on to Gommar Estienne. Given Fortescue's dates (1531?–1607), the binding is likely to be by Estienne. M. M. Foot, The Henry Davis Collection, I (London, 1978), 170 describes a binding which ‘Claude de Picques' made for Marx Fugger; it is a copy of the same edition of Greek letters, in a very similar binding. Like the binding of Bod-inc. E‑022(1), it is in the Greek style: it used to have four ties consisting of three plaited leather ties, it has grooved boards, a flat back, and similar raised head- and tail-bands. Two of the tools on this binding in the Davis Collection are identical with tools used on E‑022(1). It seems likely that the binding of E‑022(1) was made by Gommar Estienne for John Fortescue, and that he made a similar but more elaborately decorated one for Marx Fugger. Exhibited at Burlington Fine Arts Club, case G.13 (cf. E. Gordon Duff & S. T. Prideaux, Burlington Fine Arts Club: Exhibition of Bookbindings (London, 1891)).

Size: 220 × 160 × 58 mm.

Size of leaf: 216 × 152 mm.

A seventeenth-century(?) note adding the pseudo-Pythagoras and the pseudo-Brutus letters to the table of contents. ‘17' in black ink across the fore-edge.

Provenance: Sir John Fortescue (1531?-1607). Presented by Fortescue in 1601: see Benefactors' Register, I 23, and James, Catalogus (1605), 315; Jensen, ‘Benefactors' Register', no. 46.

Former Bodleian shelfmarks: E 1.7 Art (as in James); B 3. 7 Linc.

SHELFMARK: Auct. 1R 4.6.

Copy number: E-022(2)

Wanting leaf2 σ6, a blank. Part II bound first, probably from early times.

Binding: Nineteenth-century green straight-grained morocco; gold-tooled; gilt edges, formerly coloured blue or green.

Size: 215 × 160 × 45 mm.

Size of leaf: 211 × 150 mm.

On title of item 2, the table of contents continued in manuscript to include the authors of item 1. Foliation in early brown ink; running headings, consisting of author's names; some marginal notes in Greek, mainly extracting key words; all possibly in the hand of Crinitus. A pointing hand on2 θ1r.

Provenance: Petrus Crinitus (1475-1507); on Α2r of section 2 (bound first): ‘Pet: Criniti & amicorum'. Benedetto Varchi (1502/3-1565/6); on Α2r of section 2 ‘Bened. Varchij'. George Hibbert (1757-1837); on front endleaf: ‘Hibbert 1829'. Mark Pattison (1813-1884); on the front endleaf in Bywater's hand: ‘Pattison Cat. n° 1200. 33/-'; sale (1885), lot 1200. Ingram Bywater (1840-1914); Elenchus, no. 1186. Bequeathed in 1914.

SHELFMARK: Byw. M 6.7.

Copy number: E-022(3)

Part II bound first.

Binding: Early sixteenth-century (Rome, c.1500-10) dark olive-brown goatskin over grooved boards; bound in imitation of a Greek binding. On the upper cover multiple fillets form a border and two concentric frames; the inner rectangle is divided into three sections by two sets of horizontal multiple fillets; within the outer border a repeated foliate tool; within the outer frame a repeated scroll tool, gilt, now mainly worn off; in the head and tail sections of the inner rectangle a repeated framed rosette stamp, gilt, now mainly worn off; in the central section a plaquette of Julius Caesar, head and shoulders, laureate, facing right, toga clasped on the right shoulder, lettered DIVI IVLI. On the lower cover multiple fillets form a border and three concentric frames; within the outer border the repeated foliate tool, as on the upper cover; within the first frame a repeated scroll tool, gilt; within the second frame a smaller foliate stamp; in the inner rectangle two rows of the framed rosette tool, gilt. Some impressions of the smaller foliate tool on the lower cover and of the larger foliate tool on the upper cover have been coloured white, possibly by a later hand. Two double-thong clasps, now wanting, were hinged on the lower cover and fastened on pins, now wanting, on the edge of the upper cover. Gilt edges, gauffered: on the fore-edge with knotwork tools in compartments outlined by lines of S‑tools and dotted lines; on the other edges by a diaper of double roundels inside dotted diagonals, inside a border of S‑tools flanked by dotted lines. Greek double headbands of dark brown silk. Sewn on three split thongs. Bands divided and outlined by three or four blind lines. Compartments empty. New endleaves. See Anthony Hobson, ‘Census of Plaquette and Medallion Bindings', no. 15; Anthony Hobson, Humanists and Bookbinders (Cambridge, 1989), 221; Anthony Hobson, ‘Two Roman Bindings', BLR 15 (1996), 372-81: the binding is reproduced on 379, fig. 3. The plaquette is Émile Molinier, Les Bronzes de la renaissance, 2 vols (Paris, 1886), I no. 55; E. F. Bange, Die italienischen Bronzen der Renaissance und des Barocks (Berlin and Leipzig, 1922), 170; S. de Ricci, The Gustave Dreyfus Collection: Reliefs and Plaquettes (Oxford, 1931), 52; John W. Pope-Hennessy, Renaissance Bronzes from the Samuel H. Kress Collection (London, 1965), 270. The shop's known work is listed in Hobson, ‘Two Roman Bindings'. This binder, called by Hobson the ‘Binder of the Munich Xenophon', was doing the finest work in early sixteenth-century Rome. Much of his work, especially Hobson nos 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7, was a deliberate attempt to recreate an ideal antique binding. The number of Greek manuscripts and Aldine Greek editions is notable.

Size: 218 × 155 × 64 mm.

Size of leaf: 212 × 157 mm.

Provenance: Erased inscription on the title-page, figure 8 at the head of the same page, and slight offset from an inscription on the now absent front endleaf. Edwin Henry Lawrence (fl. 1820; †1891), exhibited at the Burlington Fine Arts Club Exhibition of Bookbindings, 1891, G. 13; sale (London: Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge, 9 May 1892), lot 207, for £5. 5. 0, to ‘James'. Thomas Ryburn Buchanan (1846-1911). Presented by Mrs Buchanan in 1941.

SHELFMARK: Buchanan e.13.

Go to top of page