Horti Medici Amstelaedamis

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COMMELIN, Caspar: Horti Medici Amstelaedamis Plantae, Rariores et Exoticae. Ad vivum aeri incisae. Lugduni Batavorum [Leiden], apud Fridericum Haringh 1706.

Quarto, pp. [viiii] 488, plus 48 plates engraved by Pieter Sluyter. Plates 23 and 24 bound in wrong order. Ragged at edges, with some soiling and darkening, tear to plate 35, repaired from the verso, bound, with initial and final blanks, contemporary marbled wrappers in large part preserved, encased in modern half calf and marbled boards, red morocco gilt label. Armorial plate on verso of wrapper of John Hope M.D., purchase-note (his?), Leiden, October 13 1718. One early ink shelfmark on verso of wrapper, crossed through, another on title-page.

FIRST EDITION of these illustrations and descriptions of plants in the Hortus Medicus of Amsterdam. This was the author’s longest illustrated plant-study. He had published a work in Leiden, 1703, called the ‘Praeludia Botanica’ containing an appendix with illustrations of only 33 plants; the present work and the other were both published again in 1715. Commelin (1667–1731) was the nephew of Jan Commelin, a spice merchant instrumental to the growth of the Amsterdam botanical garden, which began as a physic garden. A genus of flower, the commelina, is named after them.

Hunt 399, 405 (other editions); Nissen, BB, 387; Pritzel 1837.