LEECHDOMS, WORTCUNNING AND STARCRAFT OF EARLY ENGLAND: Being a Collection of Documents, for the Most Part Never Before Printed, Illustrating the History of Science in this Country before the Norman Conquest.
Price: $750.00 USD
Place Published: London
Publisher: Longman, Green, Longman, Roberts & Green.
Date Published: 1864-65.
Edition: First Edition, First Printing
Condition: Near Fine
Book Id: 310412
First Edition. Two Volumes (of Three). Royal Octavo. Original publishers bindings of black paper-covered boards with pebbled brown cloth spines titled in gilt. Vol.I: cvi + 406pp. + 16pp. list of works; Vol.II: xxxviii + 414pp. + 16pp. list of works; folding colour frontispieces to each volume. Endpapers slightly toned, corner chipped from lower rear corner of free endpaper in Vol I. Bookplates on front paste-downs of the Greenock Library Reference Only). A near fine, bright set with crisp bindings and uncracked hinges. Rare and desirable in the original publisher's bindings.
¶ An extremely important work on British Folk traditions, healing, lore and magical traditions. In most cases the original Anglo-Saxon text is given, with an annotated English translation on the facing page. The two volumes offered here (of the three volume set) contain the principal treatises, the third volume (issued later, and not present here) was an addendum containing more minor works. The first volume contains a Preface examining the availability and influence of Greek and Latin medical texts in Anglo-Saxon times. It reproduces an Anglo-Saxon version of the Herbarium of Apuleius, followed by an Old English version of the "Medicina de Quadrupedibus" of Sextus Placitus and a series of short medical texts (called "Leechdoms"), most of which were gathered from the fly leaves of old manuscripts. This is followed by a series of charms on diverse subjects. The Second Volume contains a Preface which examines aspects of life in mediaeval Britain and sets the context for the "Leech Book" that follows. This text - known as "The Leechbook of Bald" is a treatise on folk medicine in three parts, and is taken from a tenth century manuscript which was once the property of Glastonbury Abbey. The book includes a Glossary and Index of Proper Names.