Important acquisitions

De rerum natura, libri VI

Author Lucretius
Title De rerum natura, libri VI
Imprint Paris: Jean Bienné
Date of Publication 1570
Language Latin
Notes One of a small group of books that are known to exist in bindings that were produced for James VI before the union of the crowns in 1603. Of the nine examples identified, two are already held by the National Library (Bdg.l.33 and Bdg.m.104), and there is only one other held in Scotland at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh. The significant feature of the binding is the finely gilt stamped royal arms of Scotland which, unlike the other two examples held by the Library, is flanked by the initials I and R with a 6 above. The vellum binding is also complete in its original form: the Library?s other two examples having been rebacked with loss of the original leather. From contemporary documents we know that Edinburgh binder John Gibson was appointed bookbinder to the King on 29 July 1581 and continued in this role until his death on 26 December 1600. Among these documents is a receipt signed by the King listing 59 books bound by Gibson but none of these have been located. There follows further receipts for binding but, unfortunately, without the inclusion of the titles of the books bound. The book itself is an edition of Lucretius published in Paris in 1570. Titus Lucretius Carus was a first-century BC Roman poet and philosopher whose only known work is De rerum natura, a philosophical poem on Epicureanism: the pursuit of happiness through an understanding of the world, limiting one?s desires and living modestly.
Shelfmark IN PROCESS
Reference Sources Bookseller's notes; ?The Library of Mary Queen of Scots, and of King James the Sixth? in The Miscellany of the Maitland Club, I, 1840
Acquired on 06/10/17
Search for Important Acquisitions
      

 

Please let us know what you think of this resource, if you have information to add about an acquisition, or if you have rare Scottish books that you would like to donate or sell. E-mail us at rarebooks@nls.uk

Back to Important Acquisitions Introduction