Tuesday - 25 November 2014

More Zainer Incunabula

29 May 2001Written by ATG Reporter

USA: INCUNABULA offered as part of the April 26 sale of Early Printed Books at Swanns were not in the Friedlaender class, but the top lots did include two books from the press of Gunther Zainer, Augsburg’s first printer.

Bound in modern vellum, but dated 1469, and only the second or third book to be produced on the press set up in the previous year, was a copy of Johannes Aurbach’s Summa de Sacrementis. The first leaf came from another copy and the crude manuscript initials of red and blue had been later “heightened with coloured pencil”. Showing some foxing, a few wormholes, and, in what some might think of as a final indignity, the rubber stamp marks of the Odd Fellows’ Library Association, it nonetheless managed a bid of $5000 (£3570).

Ob einmen Mann sei zu nehmen ein ehelich Weib oder nicht by Albertus de Eyb was a work on marriage, procreation and child-rearing that proved a good seller. It first appeared in 1472 but the disbound copy offered by Swanns was a third edition of the following year. It was foxed, soiled and dampstained, and may have been lacking a leaf, but it was bid up to $9000 (£6430).

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