Ex libris XXIII commentariorum in vetera Imperatorum Romanorum numismata Aeneae Vici Liber primus

Autore VICO, Enea (1523-1567).
Tipografo Paolo Manuzio
Dati tipografici Venezia, 
Prezzo Venduto/Sold
Ex libris XXIII commentariorum in vetera Imperatorum Romanorum numismata Aeneae Vici Liber primus

4to (215x158 mm). [4], 9-130, [14] pp. and 3 engraved plates including a superb architectural title page, a full-page portrait of Julius Caesar (bound before quire B), and a plate showing various funerary instruments (bound between ll. K2 and K3). Collation: A2 B4 [C]4 D-Q4 R2 α4β2. Aldine anchor and dolphin on l. R2v. Quire C is neither signed nor numbered and consists of VIII numbered engraved plates, which count as page numbers 17-24 in the pagination. Page 88 is wrongly numbered 78. Woodcut decorated initials. As in most copies, Vico's engraved emblem pasted on title-page verso and numerous engravings of Roman coins cut to size and neatly pasted at the beginning of each appropriate chapter. Errata on l. R2r with two lines added by hand, as usual. Nicely bound in 18th-century mottled calf, gilt spine with double morocco lettering piece (red and green), marbled endleaves (joints and spine head and tail worn). From the library of Albert Ehrman (1890-1969, his engraved bookplate on the front pastedown with the motto “Pro viribus summis contendo ex libris” and his stamp on the back flyleaf with his initials), whose collection was partly presented to the Cambridge University Library in 1978 and now forms the so-called “Broxbourne Collection” (after the village of Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, where Ehrman lived); the rest of the library was sold at auction (London, Broxbourne sale, Sotheby, Parke, Bernet & Co., 14 Nov. 1977-8 May 1978). Title page slightly shaved, some marginal soiling. A very fresh, genuine copy.

RARE FIRST EDITION (reissued by Manuzio in 1562). Enea Vico “united an uncommon talent as an artist and engraver in bronze with literary expertise […] Vico brought out two books of his own with reproductions of coins […] The first [Ex libris XXIII commentariorum in vetera Imperatorum Romanorum numismata] is richly illustrated with the coinage of Julius Caesar […] In view of the quality of the typography, both deserve to be considered as being amongst the finest Italian books of the sixteenth century […] Enea Vico is the first numismatic writer not to have been deceived by contemporary forgeries. Moreover, he did not only interest himself in the ‘portraits' but in the coins themselves, and also illustrated the reverses” (F. Bassoli, Antiquarian Books on Coins and Medals, Crestline & London, 2001, p. 14).

Renouard, p. 181, no. 17; UCLA, no. 627; Dekesel, V-24; Adams, V-637.

  • Ex libris XXIII commentariorum in vetera Imperatorum Romanorum numismata Aeneae Vici Liber primus
  • Ex libris XXIII commentariorum in vetera Imperatorum Romanorum numismata Aeneae Vici Liber primus
  • Ex libris XXIII commentariorum in vetera Imperatorum Romanorum numismata Aeneae Vici Liber primus
  • Ex libris XXIII commentariorum in vetera Imperatorum Romanorum numismata Aeneae Vici Liber primus