Collecta et exercitata Friderici Sunczel Mosellani liberalium studiorum magistri in octo libros Physicorum Arestotelis; In almo studio Ingolstadiensi, cum adiectone textus nove translationis Johannis Argiropoli bizatij circa questiones.

SÜNZEL Fridericus (1506)


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Alantsee's fine large device printer's device on final recto, large white-on-black ornamental initials, printed manicules in the margins. 

4to (227 x 170 mm). [152]ff (including the blank b4). Mid-16th century German or Viennese? binding of blind tooled calf over bevelled wooden boards, covers panelled with fillets, outer ornamental border, inner panel with two stag hunting roll strips and a central ornamental stamp on upper cover and central roll on lower cover, upper cover also with repeated small gilt stamps including a rosette and 'true lover's knot', sympathetically rebacked in the late nineteenth century, with endpapers replaced, spine lettered in gilt, remains of contemporary ink title at head of fore-edge (gilt faded, lacking clasps front board lightly chipped and wormed).

(Venice, Petrus Liechtenstein for Leonhard Alantsee of Vienna, 28 May 1506)

A very rare edition of this commentary on Aristotle's Physics, printed for Alantsee of Vienna by Liechtenstein of Venice, known in only two copies in Italy, four in US libraries, and only found at the British Library in the UK; handsomely preserved in a slightly later blind and gilt tooled binding sympathetically restored by the renowned English collector of early printing and tooled bindings George Dunn (1865 - 1912).

Only two editions of Sünzel's commentary are known, the first printed in Haguenau in 1499 (is00869000 locating in the US only Burndy Library Smithsonian, Huntington Library, Newberry, and Yale University) and the present one. It is the only known work of Fridericus Sünzel, the 'magister' at the gymnasium in Ingolstadt who died in 1518. Sünzel writes in the preface that he has undertaken this work to counter the circulation of all of the bad commentaries that have obscured the meaning of Aristotle. Sünzel seeks to make Aristotle more intelligible through a process of clarification by 'bringing together those things which are scattered and necessary into one body and to cut away the superfluous'. 

This edition is also of interest on account of the light it sheds on the international aspect of the early booktrade. The colophon indicates that this work was printed in Venice by Petrus Liechtenstein of Cologne at the cost of Leonardus Alantsee a bookseller in Vienna whose device appears on the colophon. Leonardus Alantsee, later with his brother Lukas, frequently published books printed in Venice and elsewhere, such as Hagenau, Basel and Strasbourg, with printers such as Adam Petri, Matthias Schürer, Thomas Anshelm, and Johann Stuchs, this being one of the earliest examples.

Provenance: from the library of George Dunn, of Woolley Hall, near Maidenhead, with his booklabel and characteristic acquisition notes in pencil dated Dec 1899, his sale Sotheby's 1913-17, lot 3767.

As noted on the John Rylands Library website, Dunn was an "English bibliophile and keen student of palaeography and early printing. Throughout his life he built up an impressive library at Woolley Hall, collecting early English law books, medieval manuscripts (chiefly from the Phillipps and Ashburnham sales), early printed books (including volumes from unusual towns and presses) and lastly, early stamped bindings, which he was one of the first British collectors to notice and preserve." For his obituary see: .

Small wormtrack to the lower blank margin of the first two gatherings and upper blank margin of g4-i4 occasionally touching headline; small single wormhole to the blank lower right corner throughout, otherwise a very good copy.

BMSTC Italian, p. 652. Censimento EDIT 16 CNCE 59612 (Galliate & Trieste only). VD16 ZV 28173 (BSB Munich only). OCLC (US 4 copies only: Harvard, Notre Dame, Penn, Wisconsin).

Rare: according to Rare Book Hub no copy at auction since 1956.

Stock Code: 239418

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