ARISTOTLE. Aristotelous Politikon Bib. Th. Aristotelis Politicorum Libri VIII.

Leiden, ex Officina Elzeviriana, 1621


8vo. 2 vols, pp. (xvi) 388; 389-1045 (xli). Roman letter, with Greek, mostly double column. Woodcut printer’s device to t-p, decorated initials. Uniform light age browning, edges a little dusty, slight foxing to first and last ll. of each, lower outer corner of Lll 1 torn affecting two words, marginal paper flaw at lower edge of Eee 5 . A very good copy in early C18 English crimson morocco, marbled eps, double gilt ruled, small gilt rosettes to corners, inner edges gilt, raised bands, same gilt decoration to spine, gilt-lettered title, a little cracking, some corners a bit bumped. Bookplate of Robert J. Hayhurst to front pastedown of vol. 1.

A very good, richly bound copy of this Greek and Latin edition of Aristotle’s immensely influential essay on political philosophy—the basis of early model political theory. ‘A respectable and scarce edition: it is very neatly printed by the Elzevirs’ (Moss). ‘Editio nitida’ (Hoffman). In eight books, the work discusses the institution of the ‘polis’, intellectual and moral virtues as applied to politics, the nature of citizens, types of government, the ideal state and citizens’ education. It was produced by the great humanist Daniel Heinsius (1580-1655), professor at Leiden and editor of numerous Elzevir classical texts. It also features the fragmentary Greek and Latin texts of Heraclides Lembus’s ‘De politiis’ and the Jewish historian Nicolaus Damascenus’s ethnographic account ‘De moribus gentium’. The last few pages are devoted to the Jesuit classicist Andreas Schottus’s annotations to Aristotle’s ‘Politics’. An exquisite set.

Willems 180; Moss I, 129; Hoffman I, 312; Brunet I, 468. Not in Dibdin.

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