Aesopi Phrygis Fabulae elegantissimis eiconibus veras animalium species ad vivum adumbrantes. Gabriae Graeci fabellae XXXXIIII. Batrachomyomachia Homeri, hoc est ranarum et murium pugna. Galeomyomachia, hoc est, felium et murium pugna, tragoedia Graeca. Haec omnia cum Latina interpretatione

Autore: AESOPUS (c. 620-560 BC)

Tipografo: Jean de Tournes

Dati tipografici: Lyon, 1551


16mo (122x70 mm). 375, [9] pp. Collation: a-z8 A8. Greek portion of title romanized. Greek and Latin text in parallel columns from p. 3 to p. 279, on opposite pages from p. 280 to p. 375. Woodcut printer's device on title page and prism device to verso of otherwise blank final leaf. With 40 woodcut illustrations in text illustrating the fables of Aesopus, of which 37 are ascribed to Bernard Salomon and 3 (fables 46, 100, 118) are repeated from Tournes edition of La Perrière's Theatre des bons engines (1545). Woodcut head- and tail-pieces and decorative initials. Early 17th-century blind-stamped panelled calf, spine in compartments, covers with fleur-de-lys centre-pieces, central panel with floral corner-pieces, blue (faded) edges (joints, spine ends, and corners partly skillfully restored). Later ink underlining and occasional marginalia in Greek and Latin (the latter mostly at end, including more extensive notes around prism device). Small restoration to lower margin of title, some occasional spotting and marginal staining, slightly browned, all in all a very good, genuine copy, nicely bound and with a strong impression of the woodcuts.

First de Tournes edition in Greek and Latin, edited by Adam Knopff (cf. Typographus Lectori, p. [382]), of Aesop's fables. A second edition, with sixty-one woodcuts and the addition of the fables of Avianus, was issued by De Tournes in 1570 (cf. R. Brun, Le livre français illustré de la Renaissance, Paris, 1969, pp. 77-81 and 184).

The volume also includes the Aesopi fabulatoris vita (pp. 7-118) by Maximus Planudes (c. 1260-1330), the fables (Fabellae) by Babrius or Gabrias (2nd cent.), the Batrachomiomachia by Homerus (8th cent. BC), and the Galeomyomachia by Theodorus Prodromus (12th cent.).

Index Aureliensis, 101.166; A. Cartier, Bibliographie des editions de Jean de Tournes, Paris, 1937, pp. 304-305, no. 183; S. von Gültlingen, Bibliographie des livres imprimés à Lyon au seizième siècle, IX, p. 164, no. 196.