De mysteriis Aegyptiorum, Chaldaeorum, Assyriorum. (And other texts by a.o. Proclus, Porphyrius, Synesius, Psellus, Speusippus, Priscianus of Lydia, Alcinous, Pythagoras, Xenocrates and Marsilio Ficino. Edited and translations by Marsilio Ficino.).
Venice, Aldus Manutius, September 1497. 29 x 21 cm. Full calf (probably bound in the early 18th century, with a few restorations). 186 p. First edition. Bookblock edges sprinkled red and blue. Last blank missing. Owner's inscription on title dated 1558. Inscription on flyleaf by former owner James Ralston Skinner, dated 1875. A few marginal notes. Some small defects, but in general a remarkably clean and white copy. Editio princeps of Iamblichus, Porphyrius and Proclus and others. An early Aldus Manutius edition of great harmony and simplicity, an important collection of translations and editions by Marsilio Ficino (1433-1499) of various Platonist philosophers, sprinkled with texts of his own and concluded with the first printing of Ficino's essay 'De Voluptate' (written in 1457). Goff J216.Title page with index of the book, followed on verso by the printed dedication to Giovanni de' Medici (later Pope Leo X). Large woodcut open initial at the beginning of the text. Spaces for initials with guide letters (not filled in).The 1558 inscription on the title is hard to read; the name could be something like Petrus (...) Mecklenburgius, with an interesting monogram involving a P and a noughts and crosses grid (tic-tac-toe). James Ralston Skinner (1830-1893) was an attorney from Cincinnati, important in the theosophic world and a correspondent of Blavatsky. The American wrote a number of books about Egypt (especially the pyramid of Gizeh), about metrology and about the kabbala. He bought this book from the Leipsic antiquarian firm of List and Francke.
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Book number: 270913
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