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Price: £3,800.00

  

Il Metamorfosi Metallico et Humano

Nelquale Si Contengono Quatro Sogni Il Primo De Quali

By Giovanni Battista Nazari

1564 - Brescia - Francesco Marchetti al Segno dell' Ancora

7.5" by 5"; 34pp, [1]

 

DETAILS

An extremely scarce work on alchemical transformation and allegorical alchemy.

This work mostly speaks of the alchemical transformation of metals but also discusses humans. It is an extended allegory in the form of several dreams. The title loosely translates into English as 'Metallic and Human Metamorphosis: Which Contains four Dreams, The first of them and the sophisticated metal mutation, the second of the real transformation or the alchemy of metals; the third of physical transformation of human bodies and the fourth of the spiritual transformation in Christ: new in light to useful, and commodious of every curious ingenuity.'

Through the dreams the author meets several symbolic figures who lead him to realise the errors, deceptions and falsehoods of alchemy.

The first edition of this work.

Later editions of this work were titled Della Tramutatione Metallica Sogni Tre.. and issued in 1572 and 1599.

In the original Italian.

With only one of the original two full page woodcuts to this work. In addition to this full page woodcut there is a printer's colophon to the verso of title page and an illuminated letter to the first leaf of text. 

Collated, lacking leaves G3 and G4 and therefore numbered pages 27 and 28. To the verso of leaf G4 is a full page illustration which is therefore missing from the work as above.

Very little is known about Nazari, but he was a sixteenth century alchemist. He has been mentioned through history by other fellow alchemists.

An extremely early and fascinating work on alchemy. This very scarce work is likely to have been extremely influential in the forthcoming influx of works in the field of alchemical allegories at the start of the seventeenth century.   

CONDITION

In paper covered boards. Externally, rubbed to the extremities and spine. Label to the tail of spine. Marks to boards. Small piece of paper adhered to the front endpaper. Internally, firmly bound. Prior owner's inscription to the title page. Small closed tear to the title page at the top. Internally, firmly bound. Pages are slightly age toned. Spotting to the endpapers and occasional spots to pages, heavier to the first and last few pages. Prior owner's correction to the word 'edera' to page 21. Lacking two leaves, G3 and G4, therefore pages 27-28. Overall: GOOD.


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