Celsus, Aurelius Cornelius: De medicina.

Edited by Bartholomaeus Fontius.

Florence:  Nicolaus Laurentii, Alamanus, 1478.
Fol. & 4to.   [*6] a4 b-i6 l-z6 &6 aa-gg6 hh4 A8.   [196] leaves, the last blank.
ISTC ic00364000;  Goff C364;  BMC VI 627;  Bod-inc C-160;  Hargreaves 34;  GW 6456.

Shelf-mark: Sp Coll Hunterian Be.3.17 (see main library entry for this item)
Note: The unsigned first leaf [*1], which contains the letter from Bartholomaeus Fontius to Franciscus Saxettus, is loosely inserted and measures 260 x 193 mm (extracted from another copy?).
Note: In this copy the preliminary gathering [*], gatherings a-x, and sheets y2.5, y3.4, z3.4 are in folio, the rest are in quarto.
Variants: Headline on o5r correctly reads “.QVINTVS”, not “.QVARTVS” (corresponding to BMC’s third copy);  two settings are known of 12 bifolios - the setting of the Hunterian copy follows that of Hargreaves 34 (i.e. the copy in the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh).
Provenance: Sforza family, Milan: below the incipit on [*2r] is a scroll painted in brown containing in heavily worn gilt lettering the Sforza motto “MERITO ET TEMPORE”.
Unidentified owner: unidentified painted coat of arms on [*2r] (azure, a fess or, in base a rose gules barbed and seeded proper, in chief there are slight traces of a now almost illegible symbol - perhaps two griffins - together with traces of what might be the letter “P”).
Robert Nesbitt (d.1761), physician; lot 1597 (misprinted 1599) 'Aur. Corn. Celsus de Medicina, in corio turc.' in 'A catalogue of the large and valuable library of Robert Nesbitt, M.D. ...' (London: 1761).
William Hunter (1718-1783), physician and anatomist: purchased by Hunter at the Nesbitt sale for £5.10.0 according to the copy of the sale catalogue (sparsely annotated with buyers’ names) in Harvard University Library.
University of Glasgow: Hunterian bequest 1807; Hunterian Museum bookplate and book label on front pastedown, with former shelfmark “Z.7.16”.
Note: Hunter appears to have purchased for £2.12.6 a second copy of this edition from the London bookseller, Peter Molini, 29 June 1772;  see Molini’s bill to Hunter (University of Glasgow, Hunter Papers H219);  that copy, described by Molini as “bound in parch[ment]”, is no longer in the Hunterian Library.
Binding: England, 18th-century gold-tooled reddish-brown sheep;  covers decorated with a frame of triple gold fillets, at whose inner corners are corner-pieces made up of several separate tools, and a lozenge-shaped centre-piece also composed of separate tools;  gold-tooled spine;  edges and turn-ins decorated with an alternate sun and anthemion roll;  marbled endpapers;  gilt-edged leaves;  green silk bookmark.   Size:  283 x 210 mm. 
Leaf size: 272 x 204 mm.
Annotations: Occasional 16th-century(?) marginal annotations (most of which have been heavily bleached and are now largely illegible);  marginal references to Fallopius on &5v and &6r;  leaves [*3]-b5 foliated “3”-“15” in an 18th-century hand;  18th-century price “3.3.0” in ink on first front flyleaf.
Decoration: Six-line historiated initial “U” on [*2r] depicting a seated physician in a pink robe and cap holding aloft a urine flask, the initial in gold;  the four margins of [*2r] decorated with a floral border which includes roses, strawberries and blackberries, and in the lower border is a painted coat of arms (see Provenance above);  opening initials of books 2-8 supplied in red and blue with reserved white;  other initials and paragraph marks throughout supplied in red or blue.
Imperfections: Wanting the blank leaf A8.

Illuminated border and historiated initial in Celsus, Aurelius Cornelius: De medicina