Fabularum Liber

HYGINUS, C. Julius: Fabularum Liber, ad omnium poetarum lectionem mire necessarie . . . eiusdem Poeticon Astonomicon, libri quattuor. Basle, apud Hervagium, 1535.

Folio, fols. XV, pp. 8–248, text woodcuts of the constellations personified, woodcut initials. Last two leaves have Greek and Latin texts on facing pages. Bound in nineteenth-century cat’s-paw boards with pink spine (worn).

FIRST EDITION OF ALL THE WORKS, and including Palaephatus’ ‘De Fabulosis Narrationibus’, Fulgentius’ ‘Mythologicarum & Locum Antiquarum Interpretatio’, Aratus’ ‘Phainomenon Fragementus’ & ‘Phaenomena’, and Proculus’ ‘De Sphaera’.

Hyginus, Latin author, a native of Spain (or Alexandria), was a pupil of the famous Cornelius Alexander Polyhistor and a freedman of Augustus, by whom he was made superintendent of the Palatine library (Suetonius, ‘De Gramminaticis’, 20). He is said to have fallen into great poverty in his old age, and to have been supported by the historian Clodius Licinus. He was a voluminous author, and his works included topographical and biographical treatises, commentaries on Helvius Cinna and the poems of Virgil, and disquisitions on agriculture and bee keeping. Sadly, all these are lost. The ‘Poeticon Astronomicon’ was one of the primary ancient literary sources on the constellations.

BM/STC German 427. Not in Adams.


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