Homiliae super Johannem. Saint JOHN CHRYSOSTOM.

The “Golden-Mouthed” Preacher

Homiliae super Johannem.

Translated by Franciscus Griffolinus (Aretinus). 279 leaves (of 280, without initial blank). 33 lines, Roman letter, 5-line initial “C” on [b]6r in gold with white vine stem decoration on a red, blue, & green ground, [b]7v with a 7-line gold initial “Q” with white vine stem decoration on a red, blue, green, & gold ground extending into upper & outer borders, 2- to 3-line initials supplied in blue. Folio (339 x 225 mm.), early 19th-cent. brown morocco (last leaf a little defective & stained at edges), sides richly decorated in gilt, spine richly gilt, a.e.g. Rome: Georgius Lauer for the Monastery of St. Eusebius, 29 October 1470.

First edition of this most attractive book, one of the first books from the fifth Roman press. It is dedicated to Cosimo de’ Medici. St. John Chrysostom (ca. 347-407), Bishop of Constantinople, studied law and theology at Antioch. After living as a hermit in a cave for several years, he returned to Antioch where he became famous as a preacher, which earned him the name Chrysostom, or “golden-mouthed.” His great powers of oratory were directed especially to the instruction and moral reformation of the nominally Christian city of Antioch. His series of homilies, here printed, established his title as the greatest of the Christian expositors. The homilies combine a great facility for seeing the spiritual meaning of the author with an equal ability for immediate practical application.

The translator, Franciscus Griffolinus (14518-83), was also known as Francesco Accolti. He was known as “le prince des jurisconsultes des son temps” and taught at many of the leading academies. He also translated for publication the letters of Phalaris and Diogenes Cynicus.

A fine copy preserved in a box. From the libraries of Sir John Hayford Thorold at Syston Park (sale: Sotheby’s, 16 Dec. 1884, lot 1040; John William Pease, and Lord Wardington, all with bookplates.

❧ B.M.C., IV, p. 36. Cross, ed., The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, pp. 282-83. Goff J-286.

Price: $65,000.00

Item ID: 2998

See all items in History, Incunabula
See all items by