Item #313377 A LEAF FROM THE SPECULUM DOCTRINALE, PRINTED BY ADOLF RUSCH, STRASSBURG, BETWEEN 1477 AND 11 FEB, 1478. Vincentius INCUNABULAR LEAF . BELLOVACENSIS, 1478.
A LEAF FROM THE SPECULUM DOCTRINALE, PRINTED BY ADOLF RUSCH, STRASSBURG, BETWEEN 1477 AND 11 FEB, 1478.
A LEAF FROM THE SPECULUM DOCTRINALE, PRINTED BY ADOLF RUSCH, STRASSBURG, BETWEEN 1477 AND 11 FEB, 1478.

A LEAF FROM THE SPECULUM DOCTRINALE, PRINTED BY ADOLF RUSCH, STRASSBURG, BETWEEN 1477 AND 11 FEB, 1478.

Strassburg: The R-Printer (Adolph Rusch), 1478. First Edition. Edition princeps. Very rare. A large folio leaf from the First Edition of the Greatest and Most Comprehensive Encyclopedias of the Middle Ages, printed by Adolf Rusch (the "R-Printer") in the Strassburg print shop of Johann Mentelin not after February 11, 1478. The Speculu[m] doctri[n]ale Vincentij beluacensis fr[atr]is ordinis p[rae]dicator[um] incipit forms part of the Speculum Maius, a great compendium of all the knowledge available to the Middle Ages, which consisted of the Speculum Naturale, Doctrinale and Historiale (which, along with the later Speculum Morale, comprises the largest incunabula known). In all the work was published in seven enormous folio volumes. The leaf measures 435 x 315 mm (17 x 12 ¼ inches), printed in double columns, 63 lines, nicely rubricated by hand with large initials. The text is one of the Index leaves, and is only half of one column on the verso. A fresh, clean example. Goff V-278; ITSC iv00278000. Item #313377

¶ Vincentius Bellovacensis (Vincent of Beauvais, (circa 1190 – circa 1264) was a 13th Century Dominican monk at the monastery of Beauvais. He was connected with the royal family being librarian and tutor to Louis IX, and tutor to his sons. Vincent undertook to write a systematic and comprehensive treatment of all branches of human knowledge, the result being the momentus SPECULUM MAIUS, the greatest and most comprehensive of all the encyclopedias generated in the Middle Ages. It records a very complete overview of all the classical and ecclesiastical knowledge and information available to late medieval man. According to the original plan the work was divided into four main parts dealing respectively with nature, doctrine (science), morality and history (Speculum Naturale, Doctrinale, Morale, Historiale). The text of each of these sections consists of quoted extracts (some of them very long) from a large number of Latin, Greek, Arabic and Hebrew writings (some 450 authors represented). It is a superior effort over earlier, similar encyclopedias, due to Vincent's access to a the royal library, which was much larger & better than libraries available to other compilers. However, this compilation was more remarkable for its size than for its quality. Vincent did not take the time to assimilate his material into an organic text, instead he quotes from documents available to him without adding anything new or even applying a commentary to explain contradictions. The task was immense, and must have required a long time to compile. Vincent carefully quotes passages and assigns the extracts to their proper authors. During his lifetime Vincent was able to complete all the volumes with the exception of the Speculum Morale, which was written between 1310 and 1325. Yet as it was a part of the original plan, this section has been included in every printed edition of the Speculum Maius.

Price (USD): $300.00