595GLaertiusDiogenes ca 200 AD
Le Vite de Filosofi Cavate da Laertio et Altri. Nelle Quali Vi Sono Sentenze, et Detti Notabili. Adornate de Bellissime, et Vaghe Figure di Gioseppe Salviati, accommodate a’ luoghi loro. Opera Non Men Curiosa che giovevole ad ogni persona di virtu. Nuovamente Ristampate, & con somma diligenza ricorrette, & ampliate. Con Privilegio.
Presso Giovachino Brugnolo, Vinegia (Venice) 1602      SOLD
Quarto7 3/4  X 6 inches[4] A-H8,I6
Bound in full contemporary vellum.
DSC_0018This edition is Important for its woodcuts in high renaissance style, foreshadowing the baroque, assigned on the title to Giuseppe della Porta (1520-70), called G. Salviati, one of the most prominent Venetian painters and illustrators of his era. However, the cuts appear to have been published after his lifetime, the earliest edition traced being that at Venice in 1598 (NUC 144, 277)  “Diogenes Laertius, the great and still wonderfully readable gossip columnist of the ancient philosophers, chiefly from Thales (circa 600 B.C.) to Epicurus (circa 4 B.C.). It has been severely criticized for its anecdotal style which entertains as it instructs, and for being terribly superficial, unoriginal, and uncritical. At the same time, it is hailed as the only thing we have and —a typical case of faute de mieux— grudging admiration is expressed for the compiler of this vast amount of information which no one else had bothered to write down. Listen to H. Richard, cited by Hicks: ‘The man (i.e. Diogenes Laertius) was foolish enough, but the book itself is of extreme value for the history, especially the literary history, of Greek philosophy.” ‘ (Quoted from Bernard Rosenthal’s description for his editio princeps of Diogenes, in catalogue 32.) Well, This is a very rare edition of an Illustrated  translation.