Lactantius, Lucius Coelius Firmianus: Opera.

Add:  Venantius Honorius Clementianus Fortunatus:  De resurrectione Christi carmen.

[Venice]:  Adam de Ambergau, 1471.
Fol.   [112 2-1210 138 14-1710 1812 19-2110 228].   [220] leaves (1/1, 22/8 blank).
ISTC il00004000;  GW M16549;  Goff L4;  BMC V 188 (IB. 19794);  Bod-inc L-005;  CIBN L-4;  BSB-Ink L-4.

Note:  This copy is printed on parchment and has painted borders and initials rather than woodcut borders and initials (as, for example, recorded in Bod-inc’s copy);  see Joseph van Praet, Catalogue de livres imprimés sur vélin, qui se trouvent dans des bibliothèques tant publiques que particulières, 4 vols (Paris: 1824-8), I, pp. 167-8, no. 480.

GIP number: L2
Shelf-mark: Sp Coll Hunterian Bf.3.2 (see main library entry for this item)
Variant: On 22/7v (f. 219v) the year of printing and name of the printer “M. CCCC. LXXI.  Adam.” are printed after the verse colophon as in Bod-inc, not before as in BMC.
Provenance: Donà dalle Trezze family, Venice:  painted coat of arms in lower margin of 2/1r (f. 13r):  troncato al primo d’argento, al secondo fasciato d’azzurro e d’oro di quattro pezzi.
Unidentified owner:  van Praet (supra) lists this, the Gaignat/Hunter copy, as item 55 “ayant appartenu à un anonyme” in Catalogue d’une bibliophile incomparable (La Haye: 1764), vol. 1, p.8, and gives the sale price as 120 fl.
Louis-Jean Gaignat (1697-1768), Secretary to King Louis XV:  Gaignat sale, 1769;  lot 220 in Guillaume de Bure, Bibliographie instructive: supplément ... ou catalogue des livres de feu M. L.J. Gaignat, 2 vols (Paris: 1769).
William Hunter (1718-1783), physician and anatomist:  purchased by Hunter at the Gaignat sale through his agent, Jean-Baptiste Dessain, for 291 livres 13 sous;  see Dessain-Hunter correspondence (University of Glasgow Library, MS Gen. 36, f. 24v).
University of Glasgow:  Hunterian bequest, 1807;  Hunterian Museum bookplate on front pastedown, with former shelfmark “At.2.9”.
Binding: France, 18th-century red goatskin;  covers decorated with a triple gold-fillet border, a small gold fleuron at each corner;  gold-tooled spine;  marbled endpapers;  gilt-edged leaves;  turquoise silk bookmark.   Size:  304 x 218 mm.
Leaf size: 295 x 205 mm.
Annotations: Underlining and nota marks in red ink in an early hand on 18/4v-18/5v (ff. 174v-175v);  18th-century manuscript title on 1/1r “Lactantius Firmianus Impressus ao. 1471”;  reference on 1/1v in an 18th-century hand “Lactantij vitam, scripta, doctrinam, errores, prolixe descripserunt Centuriatores Magdeburg[enses] Cent. 4 fol. 1075 et seq:”.
Decoration: On 2/1r (f. 13r) a six-line initial “M” is supplied in gold and is intertwined with pink and green foliage and a large blue flower;  on the same page the text is framed on all sides with a border, edged in gold, consisting of alternating panels of blue and pink decorated with a pattern of triple white dots, which serve as a background for mainly uncoloured foliage, putti with musical instruments, elf-like figures (one playing a bagpipe, another riding a peacock, another picking grapes), grotesque heads, and a half-length figure with arms crossed and wearing a hat over long blonde hair who is apparently rising out of a flower;  in the lower margin of the same page is a painted coat of arms within a green laurel wreath (see Provenance above);  eight six-line initials, which introduce separate books of the text, are supplied in gold on a purple or blue square ground decorated with triple white dots, and are further decorated with floral motifs or vignettes - including a hare, a duck, and a putto astride a swan;  rubrics added in pale crimson at the start of each book;  other initials throughout supplied in dull red or blue;  paragraph marks in the Rubricae (quire 1) are supplied in red or blue.   See N.R. Thorp, The glory of the page, no. 88).
Imperfections: Wanting the blank leaf 22/8.

Illuminated decorated page with coat of arms in Lactantius, Lucius Coelius Firmianus: Opera