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September 2017

Copyright ABCs – ‘The Art of Reading’

‘Proverbs and other Moral Sayings’. Some of these latter phrases are still familiar to us today, such as ‘Rome was not built in a day’; ‘a cat may look upon a king’; and ‘a rolling stone gathers no moss’. Some, however, are more unfamiliar and sound strange and amusing to a modern ear, such as ‘good wine needs no bush’; ‘great boast and small roast’; ‘children and chicken are always pecking’; and ‘hungry dogs will eat dirty puddings’.

Echoes from the Vault

This week Lizzie reports on an item discovered by the Lighting the Past team from within the ‘L’ section of the Copyright Deposit Collection. You can see the previous posts in the series here.

Image from The Art of Reading: Or, the English Tongue made Familiar and easy to the meanest Capacity (s LB1525.3S65)

The Art of Reading: Or, the English Tongue made Familiar and easy to the meanest Capacity by P. Sproson, was a source of education for youth of the eighteenth century, but today provided a source of amusement in the Lighting the Past office. With table after table of phrases which are, as even Sproson admits, ‘a little trifling or childish’, one can find both familiar and absurd phrases within these pages.

Sproson’s audience, delicately described in his title as those of ‘the meanest capacity’ are clarified to be ‘that province of little people’…

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Rock! Fall

[Cover Photo: Jon Kameen/Twitter] A rockfall on Yosemite’s El Capitan has killed one and left another injured during the popular climbing month of September reports USA Today. According to reports, a multitude of wintesses saw the rockfall happen on Wednesday afternoon on what is commonly referred to by climbers as “The Waterfall Route.” It is so […]

via Rock Fall ‘The Size Of An Apartment Building’ Kills 1 On El Capitan @Yosemite — Unofficial Networks

Saint Jerome and fake news

I’ve always Loved St Jerome!

Gleeson Gleanings: News & Updates from Gleeson Library | Geschke Center, USF

We have a tradition here at Gleeson Library for the last 24 years: we celebrate the feast of Saint Jerome on September 30th. Why? Because Jerome is the patron saint of librarians and Jerome spent his life searching for the truth. 

 Jerome was born in 347 and died on September 30 in 420. He was a translator, theologian and priest. His translation of the Bible, called The Vulgate, was considered the most important translation of the Bible for over 1,000 years.
In Jerome’s time, the church was still defining Christian doctrine and beliefs. There were raging controversies about questions like the nature of Jesus (how could he be both human and divine) and the nature of the Trinity. Jerome took very strong positions on these kinds of issues. He had a reputation for being a difficult and argumentative person because of this. (I suspect many of us would not have…

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Medea, Jason and their Marriage

I was think of the Poison crown…

David Allsop Classics

Medea helped Jason succeed in his quest for the Golden Fleece betraying her family and killing her brother in the process. Jason brought Medea back to Greece with him and they ultimately settled in Corinth. Jason would not have succeeded in his quest without Medea’s help and she feels betrayed by him when he leaves her for the princess of Corinth (Euripides Medea 475-91). Through examining the importance Medea places upon her marriage and Jason’s oath some insight can be obtained into the reasoning behind her act of revenge.

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The Seven Wonders of the World!

De Septem Orbis Spectaculis

Philo byzantius. De Septem orbis spectaculis, Leonis Allatii opera nunc primum graece et latine prodit, cum notis.

We are all familiar with the phrase “The Seven Wonders of the World” , it is even easy to bring up images of them in our minds,but can you name the seven popularly accepted ones, do they still exist,where are they?

In 1640,Leo Allatius(1586-1669), a Librarian  at the Vatican Library published and translated a Manuscript of De Septem Orbis

 The Seven Wonders of the World by Michael Ashley (Glasgow: Fontana Paperbacks, 1980)

Spectaculis.

At this time Allatius attributes the text to Philon of Bizantium. Philon of Byzantium (Φίλων ὁ Βυζάντιος)  i known as “the Paradoxographer”{ not to be confused with Philo Mechanicus}, Our Phylon is now dated probably the 4th-5th century A.D, which thickens our stew, once the two Phylons were considered one and were dated at  ca. 280 BC – ca. 220 BC. which is much more convenient, as I will explain.    

After I bought this Wonderful book, I looked in my usual places for Biographies and assessments of the text, Sandys,EB,CE,OIE… the usual suspects, none of these were gratifying, So I searched on  Amazon and found Michael Ashley’s book.  In his book on the subject, there are some really good insights and a nice chronological explanation of how the text of Phylon fits in the history and dissemination of the “Seven Wonders” . What I found most useful are the charts and I will use them here.   But first Allatius.

Leo Allatius, portrait in the Collegio Greco of Rome, Italy.

 

The main source of our knowledge of Allatius is the incomplete life by Stephanus Gradi, Leonis Allatii vita, published by Cardinal Mai, in Nova Bibliotheca Patrum. A complete enumeration of his works is contained in E. Legrand, Bibliographie hellenique du X VII eme siecle (Paris, 1895, iii. 435-471).  Leonis Allatii Hellas (Athens, 1872), are inaccurate and untrustworthy. For a special account of his share in the foundation of the Vatican Library, see Curzio Mazzi, Leone Allacci e la Palatina di Heidelberg (Bologna, 1893).

Allatius, was born on the island of Chios (then part of the Ottoman Empire and known as Sakız) in 1586.  He was taken by his maternal uncle Michael Nauridis to Italy to be educated at the age of nine, first in Calabria and then in Rome where he was admitted into the Greek college. A graduate of the Pontifical Greek College of St. Athanasius in Rome, he spent his career in Rome as teacher of Greek at the Greek college, devoting himself to the study of classics and theology. He found a patron in Pope Gregory XV. In 1622, after the capture of Heidelberg by Tilly, when the Protestant Elector of Bavaria Frederick V was supplanted by a Catholic one, the victorious elector Maximilian of Bavaria presented the  war booty (The Palatinate library composed of 196 cases containing about 3500 manuscripts) to Pope Gregory.  Allatius supervised its transport by a caravan of 200 mules across the Alps to Rome, where it was incorporated in the Vatican library.This took Allatius almost a year to process. The death of Gregory XV. just before his return deprived him of a fitting reward (Vatican Librarian); and he was even suspected of having appropriated or given away part of this charge. He was supported by the liberality of some of the cardinals, especially Francesco Barberini, who made him his private librarian (1638). Alexander VII. appointed him keeper of the Vatican library in 1661, and he lived the retired life of a scholar until his death. All but 39 of the Heidelberg manuscripts, which had been sent to Paris in 1797 and were returned to Heidelberg at the Peace of Paris in 1815, and a gift from Pope Pius VII of 852 others in 1816, remain in the Vatican Library to this day.

Allatius is perhaps best known today for his De Praeputio Domini Nostri Jesu Christi Diatriba (A Discussion of the Foreskin of Our Lord Jesus Christ), a minor essay mentioned in Fabricius’s Bibliotheca Graeca (xiv. 17) as an unpublished work. According to an unconfirmed nineteenth-century source,its thesis – is that the rings of Saturn (then-recently observed by telescope) are the prepuce of Jesus. Makes one wonder about the conversations about Astronomy around the Vatican?

BUT! there is more (and we haven’t even come to the Wonders yet?) Allatius was trained as a physician. In 1645 he included the first methodical discussion of vampires, in De Graecorum hodie quorundam opinationibus (“On certain modern opinions among the Greeks)

By the seventeenth century most texts (that we know of today) by Byzatine authors were already printed yet because of Allatius’ access to the Vatican, and perhaps because it was after the ‘age of  wonder’

The classic seven wonders were:

Great Pyramid of Giza
Hanging Gardens of Babylon
Statue of Zeus at Olympia
Temple of Artemis at Ephesus
Mausoleum at Halicarnassus
Colossus of Rhodes
Lighthouse of Alexandria
The only ancient world wonder that still exists is the Great Pyramid of Giza

The Seven Wonders were first defined as themata (Greek for ‘things to be seen’ which, in today’s common English, we would phrase as ‘must sees’) by Philo of Byzantium in 225 BCE, in his work On The Seven Wonders. Other writers on the Seven Wonders include Herodotus, Callimachus of Cyrene and Antipater of Sidon. Of the original seven, only the Great Pyramid exists today.

GREAT PYRAMID AT GIZA
The Great Pyramid at Giza was constructed between 2584 and 2561 BCE for the Egyptian Pharaoh Khufu (known in Greek as `Cheops’) and was the tallest man-made structure in the world for almost 4,000 years. Excavations of the interior of the pyramid were only initiated in earnest in the late 18th and early 19th centuries CE and so the intricacies of the interior which so intrigue modern people were unknown to the ancient writers. It was the structure itself with its perfect symmetry and imposing height which impressed ancient visitors.

 

HANGING GARDENS OF BABYLON
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon, if they existed as described, were built by Nebuchadnezzar II between 605-562 BCE as a gift to his wife. They are described by the ancient writer Diodorus Siculus as being self-watering planes of exotic flora and fauna reaching a height of over 75 feet (23 metres) through a series of climbing terraces. Diodorus wrote that Nebuchadnezzar’s wife, Amtis of Media, missed the mountains and flowers of her homeland and so the king commanded that a mountain be created for her in Babylon. The contoversy over whether the gardens existed comes from the fact that they are nowhere mentioned in Babylonian history and that Herodotus, `the Father of History’, makes no mention of them in his descriptions of Babylon. There are many other ancient facts, figures, and places Herodotus fails to mention, however, or has been shown to be wrong about. Diodorus, Philo, and the historian Strabo all claim the gardens existed. They were destroyed by an earthquake sometime after the 1st century CE.

 

STATUE OF ZEUS AT OLYMPIA
The Statue of Zeus at Olympia was created by the great Greek sculptor Phidias (known as the finest sculptor of the ancient world in the 5th century BCE, he also worked on the Parthenon and the statue of Athena there in Athens). The statue depicted the god Zeus seated on his throne, his skin of ivory and robes of hammered gold, and was 40 feet (12 m) tall, designed to inspire awe in the worshippers who came to the Temple of Zeus at Olympia. Not everyone was awestruck by the statue, however. Strabo reports, “Although the temple itself is very large, the sculptor is criticized for not having appreciated the correct proportions. He has shown Zeus seated, but with the head almost touching the ceiling, so that we have the impression that if Zeus moved to stand up he would unroof the temple” (Seven Wonders). The Temple at Olympia fell into ruin after the rise of Christianity and the ban on the Olympic Games as `pagan rites’. The statue was carried off to Constantinople where it was later destroyed, sometime in either the 5th or 6th centuries CE, by an earthquake.

TEMPLE OF ARTEMIS AT EPHESOS
The Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, a Greek colony in Asia Minor, took over 120 years to build and only one night to destroy. Completed in 550 BCE, the temple was 425 feet (about 129 m) high, 225 feet (almost 69 m) wide, supported by 127 60 foot (about 18 m) high columns. Sponsored by the wealthy King Croesus of Lydia, who spared no expense in anything he did (according to Herodotus, among others) the temple was so magnificent that every account of it is written with the same tone of awe and each agrees with the other that this was among the most amazing structures ever raised by humans. On July 21, 356 BCE a man named Herostratus set fire to the temple in order, as he said, to achieve lasting fame by forever being associated with the destruction of something so beautiful. The Ephesians decreed that his name should never be recorded nor remembered but Strabo set it down as a point of interest in the history of the temple. On the same night the temple burned, Alexander the Great was born and, later, offered to rebuild the ruined temple but the Ephesians refused his generosity. It was rebuilt on a less grand scale after Alexander’s death but was destroyed by the invasion of the Goths. Rebuilt again, it was finally destroyed utterly by a Christian mob lead by Saint John Chrysostom in 401 CE.

 

MAUSOLEUM OF HALICARNASSUS
The Mausoleum of Halicarnassus was the tomb of the Persian Satrap Mauslos, built in 351 BCE. Mauslos chose Halicarnassus as his capital city, and he and his beloved wife Artemisia went to great lengths to create a city whose beauty would be unmatched in the world. Mauslos died in 353 BCE and Artemisia wished to create a final resting place worthy of such a great king. Artemisia died two years after Mauslos and her ashes were entombed with his in the mausoleum (Pliny the Elder records that the craftsmen continued work on the structure after her death, both as a tribute to their patroness and knowing the work would bring them lasting fame). The tomb was 135 feet (41 m) tall and ornately decorated with fine sculpture. It was destroyed by a series of earthquakes and lay in ruin for hundreds of years until, in 1494 CE, it was completely dismantled and used by the Knights of St. John of Malta in the building of their castle at Bodrum (where the ancient stones can still be seen today). It is from the tomb of Mauslos that the English word `mausoleum’ is derived.

COLOSSUS OF RHODES
The Colossus of Rhodes was a statue of the god Helios (the patron god of the island of Rhodes) constructed between 292 and 280 BCE. It stood over 110 feet (just over 33 m) high overlooking the harbor of Rhodes and, despite fanciful depictions to the contrary, stood with its legs together on a base (much like the Statue of Liberty in the harbor off New York City in the United States of America, which is modeled on the Colossus) and did not straddle the harbour. The statue was commissioned after the defeat of the invading army of Demetrius in 304 BCE. Demetrius left behind much of his siege equipment and weaponry and this was sold by the Rhodians for 300 talents (approximately 360 million U.S. dollars) which money they used to build the Colossus. The statue stood for only 56 years before it was destroyed by an earthquake in 226 BCE. It lay in impressive ruin for over 800 years, according to Strabo, and was still a tourist attraction. Pliny the Elder claims that the fingers of the Colossus were larger than most statues of his day. According to the historian Theophanes the bronze ruins were eventually sold to “a Jewish merchant of Edessa” around 654 CE who carried them away on 900 camels to be melted down.

 

LIGHTHOUSE OF ALEXANDRIA
The Lighthouse at Alexandria, built on the island of Pharos, stood close to 440 feet (134 m) in height and was commissioned by Ptolemy I Soter. Construction was completed sometime around 280 BCE. The lighthouse was the third tallest human-made structure in the world (after the pyramids) and its light (a mirror which reflected the sun’s rays by day and a fire by night) could be seen as far as 35 miles out to sea. The structure rose from a square base to a middle octagonal section up to a circular top and those who saw it in its glory reported that words were inadequate to describe its beauty. The lighthouse was badly damaged in an earthquake in 956 CE, again in 1303 CE and 1323 CE and, by the year 1480 CE, it was gone. The Egyptian fort Quaitbey now stands on the site of the Pharos, built with some of the stones from the ruins of the lighthouse.

 

Music Printing in the Renaissance

A very nice example and explanation of music printing.

[CANTVM MENSVRABLE]

This is a small video that, in a very clear and resumed way, shows how music books were printed in the sixteenth century and afterwards. It features the process using movable pieces of type, very similar to that of traditional printing of the time. Most of the video takes place in the Plantin workshop in Antwerp, one of the most important music printing houses of Europe during the sixteenth century and where Portuguese composer Duarte Lobo printed four polyphony books in 1602, 1607, 1621 and 1639 respectively. The video is provided by The Open University.

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Characters of Distinction between true and pretending Prophets are laid down. 1665

Todays book is as much fun to read as Brown’s Pseudoxia Epidemica , Like Brown Spencer is battling against superstition, with reason and natural history as his weapon and defense. 

940G     John Spencer, Dean of Ely             1630-1693

A Discourse concerning Prodigies: Wherein The Vanity of Presages by them is reprehended, and their true and proper Ends asserted and vindicated.

[bound with]

A Discourse Concerning Vulgar Prophecies. Wherein The Vanity of receiving them as the certain Indications of any future Event is discovered; And some Characters of Distinction between true and pretending Prophets are laid down.           

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London: Printed by J. Field for Will. Graves over against Great S. Maries Church in Cambridge, 1665; London: Printed by J. Field for Timothy Garthwait at the Kings head in S. Pauls Church-yard, 1665           $1,450

 

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Octavo  6 ½ X 4 ½ . A8, a8, B-Z8, Aa-Cc8, Dd4; A-I8, K4.   Second edition of the first book, first edition of the second book. Bound in contemporary calf.

The remarkable nature of Spencer’s achievement is enhanced when it is remembered that oriental studies were then in their infancy and that he was compelled to derive nearly all his data from classical writers of Greece and Rome, from the Christian fathers, the works of Josephus, or from the Bible itself. Spencer professed that his object was ‘to clear Deity from arbitrary and fantastic humor, “A greatly extended editon of Spencer’s refutation of omens and apparitions and the first to include his new publication, a “Discourse Concerning Vulgar Prophecies.” The book examines a copious assemblage of superstitions and auguries, such as comets, eclipses, the turning of ponds to blood and the moving of mountains, tracing the history of the Old Testament and classical mythology and commending the study of Natural Philosophy. Spencer examines superstitious beliefs surrounding comets and eclipses, as well as the beliefs held by some on the turning of ponds to blood and the moving of mountains and many more interpretations of bizarre natural phenomena.                                                              

“I Shall descend now to a close and distinct discourse concerning the (forementioned) Prodigies Signal; and amongst them, first con∣cerning those which more immediately resolve into causes Natural.”

 Spencer disapproved of the interpreting natural phenomena as superstitious prognostication and rather tricot to come up with, what we would call, a  scientific explanation.                

                         ” in which the vanity of receiving them as the certain indications of any future event is discovered, and some characters of distinction between true and pretended prophets are laid down.”

This attempt to bring the public to reason and sobriety was not less timely than the the first book, published  in response to the “Annus Mirabilis,”  Some enthusiasts  brought to notice a number of pretended prodigies, as portending future changes in the state, Spencer conceiving it to be of dangerous consequence thus to unsettle the minds of the people,,

And it might Be usefully renewed in current instances and at  THIS much later periods

Spencer writes :”That Nature in its production of the several kinds of crea∣tures, should (as if they were all stampt with one common seal) give them forth in such equal and similar figures and proportions, is a more just object of wonder, then to see the natural Archeus sometimes to play the bungler, and to leave its work (in some parts thereof) rude and mishapen. That the Earth should generally be delivered of the many vapours and winds within its bowels, without the pangs and throws of an earthquake; and that all the host of Heaven should marchJoel 2. 7, 8.every one on his way, and not break their ranks, neither thrust one another, but walk every one on his path (to borrow the language of the Prophet)Excedit profectò omnia miracula, ul∣lum diem fu isse in quo non cuncta confla∣grarent. Plin. Hist. Nat. l. 2. c. 107. are prodigies beyond an Earthquake, New star, or monster sometime discovered to the world, and therefore more justly chosen to be the constant instances of the divine Wisdom and Power; and to see some strange fires breaking forth (sometimes) from the caverns of the earth, is so much beneath wonder, that Pliny tells us, it exceeds all wonder, that there should be any day wherein all the things in the world (so pregnant with fiery principles) do not break forth into one mighty flame, and lay the world in ashes.Now then what sober Reason can warrant us to conclude any necessary and natural occurrences the prophetick signs of Events”

“John Spencer, master of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, and author of ‘De Legibus DSC_0118Hebraeorum,’ was a native of Bocton, near Bleane, Kent, where he was baptized on 31 October 1630. He was educated at the King’s School, Canterbury, became king’s scholar there, and was admitted to a scholarship of Archbishop Parker’s foundation in Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, on 25 March 1645. He graduated B.A. in 1648, M.A. in 1652, B.D. in 1659, and D.D. in 1665. After taking holy orders he became a university preacher, served the cures first of Saint Giles and then of Saint Benedict, Cambridge, and on 23 July 1667 was instituted to the rectory of Landbeach, Cambridgeshire, which he resigned in 1683 in favor of his nephew and curate, William Spencer. On 3 August 1667 he was unanimously elected master of Corpus Christi College, and he governed that society for twenty-six years. He contributed verses to the Cambridge university Collection on the death of Henrietta Maria, queen dowager, in 1669. He was appointed a prebendary to the first stall at Ely in February 1671/2, and served the office of vice-chancellor of the university in the academic year 1673, during which he delivered a speech addressed to the Duke of Monmouth on his installation as chancellor of the university. He was admitted on the presentation of the king, to the archdeaconry of Sudbury in the church of Norwich on 5 September 1677; and was instituted to the deanery of Ely on 9 September 1677. He died on 27 May 1693, and was buried in the college chapel, where a monument with a Latin inscription was erected to his memory. He married Hannah, daughter of Isaac Puller, and sister of Timothy Puller. She died leaving one daughter (Elizabeth) and one son (John).
“Spencer was an erudite theologian and Hebraist, and to him belongs the honor of being the first to trace the connection between the rites of the Hebrew religion and those practiced by kindred Semitic races. In 1669 he published a ‘Dissertatio de Urim & Thummin,’ in which he referred those mystic emblems to an Egyptian origin. […] In 1685 appeared Spencer’s chief publication, his ‘De Legibus Hebraeorum ritualibus et earum rationibus libri tres.’ In this work, which included the earlier treatise on Urim and Thummin, Spencer deserted the time honored paths traced by commentators, and ‘may justly be said to have laid the foundations of the science of comparative religion. In its special subject, in spite of certain aspects, it still remains by far the most important book on the religious antiquities of the Hebrews.’ (Robertson Smith, Religions of the Semites, 1894) .’” (DNB)

Wing S-4948; CH, CLC, CN, IU, PL, WF, Y; Wing S-4949; CH, CLC, IU, MIU, NU, TO, TU, WF, Y.

 

 CHAP. II. Concerning Prodigies, Signal, Natural.I Shall descend now to a close and distinct discourse concerning the (forementioned) Prodigies Signal; and amongst them, first con∣cerning those which more immediately resolve into causes Natural. Concerning all which, I offer this general Thesis to proof. Prodigies Natural are not intended, nor to be expounded the Prognosticks of judge∣ments, suddenly to ensue upon whole Nations or particular persons. It is (especially) ignorance of their causes and ends which hath prefer∣redIsa. 44. 15. some of these Natural Prodigies to so great a veneration and re∣gard in many mens minds. As Ethnicism of old made the gods it worshipt, so ignorance oft makes the Furies it dreads.This Thesis I shall endeavour to perswade,1. By some general Reasons and Arguments.2. By a particular Induction and Survey of such as seem most plau∣sibly pretended the silent Monitours of some approaching venge∣ance.First, By some general Reasons.SECT. I. Reasons to prove Prodigies Natural no Signs of a future judgement.The first Argument taken from their doubtfull and uncertain indication; That proved from the confessions of their ablest Expositours; From their different Expositions in all times. The Interpreters of them banisht the Iewish Common-wealth of old, upon this account, Philo. Thuanus. The Argument further urged from Tully. God’s Signs express; The use∣lesness of those which are not.2. From a consideration of the times wherein most attended to. The rea∣son why a regard is to be had to the times and seasons; When Laws or U∣sages first obtained, noted from K. James. The times noted especially for gross ignorance in matters of Religion and Philosophy. Some Obser∣vations upon the remaining Registers of such accidents yet extant: The times remarked also for the publick fears and distractions happening in them. Livy. Seneca.3. From the natural and necessary Causes of these things. More of Na∣ture observable in a Prodigy, then common Occurrences.4. From the Nature and temper of the Oeconomy we are now under.THe Argument which I shall first offer to reprehend the commonArg. 1. vanity of receiving them as a kinde of indications in bodies Po∣litick, is this: Their (pretended) indications are so hugely perplext, doubt∣full and uncertain, that it cannot be concluded what judgement they portend, or when to ensue, or whether private persons or whole Nations be alam’d by them.If God do write Fata hominum in these mystick characters, there is none on earth found able to reade the writing, and (with any certainty) to make known the interpretation thereof. Most of their Expositours (like those upon Aristotle) are rather Vates quàm Interpretes. Concerning that prodigious Comet which shone in our Hemisphere, Ann. 1618▪ one that pretended himself as much Coelo à Conciliis as other men, yet thus freely delivers himself, Deum immortalem! quantò ille plurs de sese fermè Opiniones quàm crines sparsit. To a like purpose Tycho Brahe (discoursing de Nova stella Cygni, Ann. 1600.)

Carcano; 1496 fratris Michaelis Mediolanensis

942G Michæl (Michaelis Mediolanensis) Carcano ( 1427- 1484)

Sermonarium de poenitentia per adventum et per quadragesimam fratris Michaelis Mediolanensis.

V enice : Georgius Arrivabenus, 28 Sept. 1496         $9,000

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DSC_0100Large Octavo 7 1/4 X 51/2    a-z8 [et]8 [con]8 [rum]8 A-E8 F10. This copy is bound in bind-tooled pigskin over wooden boards, lacking clasps and catches.

Carcano was one of the great Franciscan preachers of the 15th-century, Michael’s preaching was much admired by Bernardino da Feltre, who called him:                                      ‘alter sanctus apostolus Paulus et Christi Tuba’                                                                        

In this book there are 92 sermons for Advent and Lent, that amount to a systematic treatment of penitence. Carcano’s preaching was much admired by Bernardino da Feltre, who called him ‘alter sanctus apostolus Paulus et Christi Tuba’. He is known for his part in founding the montes pietatis banking system, with Bernardine of Feltre, and for the marked anti-Semitism of his attacks on usury. His sermons were later printed as Sermones quadragesimales fratris Michaelis de Mediolano de decem preceptis (1492). They include arguments in favour of religious art.(see Geraldine A. Johnson, Renaissance Art: A Very Short Introduction (2005), p. 37)

The wording of the colophon suggests that the archetype of this edition is that of Nicholas de Frankfordia,1487.

Quadragesimale seu sermonarium de penitentia duplicatum per aduentu[m] videlicet & quadragesima[m] a venerabili viro fratre Michaele Mediolanensi ordinis fratrum minorum de obseruantia editum: qui tum sanctimonia vite, tu[m] ferue[n]tissima verbi dei p[re]dicatione a deo inumeris meruit corruscare miraculis felici numine explicitum est. Impressu[m] V enetijs optimaq[ue] castigatione eme[n]datu[m]: per Georgiu[m] de Arriuabenis Ma[n]tuanum. Anno d[omi]ni .M.cccclxxxxvj. die .xxviij. Septembris./

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Goff C197; H 4507*; Walsh 2140; BMC V 386;GW 6132

(Harvard
Library of Congress,
St Bonaventure Univ.,
Univ. of Kentucky,
Univ. of Minnesota)

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Mediavilla, on Lombards sentences and demonology! 1477

jamesgray2

957G

220px-Nuremberg_Chronicle_f_222v_3 A generic portrait of Richardus de media villa, woodcut from the Nuremberg Chronicle

[Middleton], d. 1302/3

Commentum super quartem Sententarium..

Venice: Christophorus Arnoldus, [circa 1476-7] $22,000

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Folio 12 1⁄4 9 1⁄4 inches. a-z10 [et]10 [cum]10 [per]10 A 10 B-D8 (D8v blank and aa1r blank) aa8 bb10 cc8 {320 leaves

DSC_0286Second edition. This copy is rubricated throughout with nicely complicated red initials. It is bound in an age appropriate binding of full calf over wooden boards with clasps and catches with quite impressive end bands.

DSC_0125“Middleton, Richard of [Richard de Mediavilla] Franciscan friar, theologian, and philosopher, was born about the middle of the thirteenth century in either England or France. He studied at Paris, where he formed part of the so-called neo-Augustinian movement, defending the philosophy and theology of Augustine against the inroads of Aristotelianism, during the years 1276–87. He probably studied under William of Ware and Matteo d’Acquasparta, usually…

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