Albertus Magnus [pseudo-]: Secreta mulierum et virorum (cum commento).

[London:  William de Machlinia, not after 22 Aug. 1485]
4to.   a-g8.   [56] leaves, the first and last blank.
ISTC ia00304500; GW 748; BMC XI 254 (IA. 55458); Oates 4185.

GIP number: A33
Shelf-mark: Sp Coll  Ferguson Ah-a.30 (see main library entry for this item)
Variant: With the same textual variants from GW as recorded in the Cambridge University Library copy (Oates 4185).
Bound with: There is evidence that this copy of the 'Secreta mulierum' was once owned by William Herbert, at which point it was bound (as the first item) with a copy of another work from the press of William de Machlinia (also now in the Ferguson Collection):  Albertus Magnus [pseudo-], Liber aggregationis, London:  William de Machlinia, [ca. 1485].   William Herbert in his “Corrections and additions” to Ames (Joseph Ames, 'Typographical antiquities ... Begun by the late Joseph Ames  ... Considerably augmented ... by William Herbert' (London 1785-90) vol. 3, p. 1773) says in his description of his copy of the 'Liber aggregationis':  “To my copy of this book is prefixed another, printed on the same types.   It wants the title-leaf;  but has this head-title, in ancient writing, ‘Albertus magnus de ſecretis Nature et de miraculis Mundi.’ ... Contains g 7, in eights.   On the last page, ‘Finis huius tractatuli venerablis Alberti Magni, ſecreta expliciunt mulierum.’   It must have had another leaf, but whether blank, or not, i cannot say, knowing of no other copy.   Quarto.”   Herbert’s copy of the 'Secreta mulierum' no longer precedes his 'Liber aggregationis' and the two appear to have been separated at some point prior to 1808 - perhaps by Herbert himself.   Professor John Ferguson published a detailed account of his (and the few other extant) copies of both of these rare editions:  'On a copy of Albertus Magnus’ De secretis mulierum, printed by Machlinia.   Communicated to the Society of Antiquaries' (Westminster:  1886) pp. 1-9, in which he argued that “there is ... much stronger evidence that my own copy of the 'De Secretis' [i.e. as opposed to the copy in the library of the British Museum] was that which belonged originally to Herbert and was described by him.   Both Herbert’s 'Liber Aggregationis' and my own 'De Secretis' have the capitals rubricated, the 'De Secretis' more completely than the other;  but in addition there are several flourishes in red at the end of each paragraph of so unmistakable a character that they must have been executed by the same hand.   These seem to me to identify the two copies beyond all question.   In this case Herbert’s copy, after it was separated from the 'Liber Aggregationis', must have been utterly neglected, leaves were lost and the corners wasted.   Ultimately it came into the hands of some one who, recognising its value, had it most carefully mended and sumptuously bound.”
Provenance: William Herbert (1718-1795), bibliographer and printseller:  see above.
Unidentified owner:  evidence of a heavily erased octagonal(?) book stamp (approximately 42 x 21 mm.) on lower margin of a2r.
Alexander Hamilton Douglas (1767-1852), 10th Duke of Hamilton:  lot 23 “red morocco ... by J. Mackenzie” in 'The Hamilton Palace Libraries:  catalogue of the Hamilton Library, which will be sold by ... Sotheby, Wilkinson & Hodge ... 1st day of May, 1884, and seven following days' (London:  1884);  sold to Quaritch for £2.1.0 according to the printed list of prices and purchasers’ names appended to the catalogue.
Bernard Quaritch (1819-1899), bookseller, London:  presumably acted as John Ferguson’s agent at the sale.
John Ferguson (1837-1916), Professor of Chemistry, University of Glasgow:  Ferguson’s pencil acquisition note on verso of front free endpaper “J. Ferguson 12.v.84 ... Hamilton Palace copy” and a reference to the Hamilton Library lot number “H 23” on a rear flyleaf.
University of Glasgow:  Ferguson collection purchase, 1921;  the Ferguson collection bookplate is pasted over another bookplate of almost identical dimensions (perhaps simply another copy of the Ferguson bookplate).
Binding: England, 19th-century red straight-grained goatskin, covers decorated with gold-tooled borders;  gold-tooled spine;  marbled endpapers;  gilt-edged leaves;  lower outer corners of most leaves in gatherings d-g repaired;  binder’s stamp on verso of front free endpaper “Bound by J. Mackenzie”.   Size:  209 x 144 mm.
Leaf size: 204 x 137 mm.
Annotations: An early inscription in upper margin of a2r, which is so heavily washed or bleached as to be almost invisible, but which is probably to be identified with Herbert’s description (quoted above) of a “head-title, in ancient writing, ‘Albertus magnus de ſecretis Nature et de miraculis Mundi.’”;  number “2184”, price “7/7/0”, and “excessively rare” written in pencil in a 19th-century hand on second front flyleaf.
Decoration: Capital strokes, paragraph strokes, and zigzag line-fillers supplied in red throughout.
Imperfections: Wanting the blank leaves a1 and g8, and leaves f7 to g3 inclusive.

Watermark from Albertus Magnus [pseudo-]: Secreta mulierum et virorum (cum commento)