COMMELIN, Caspar. Horti Medici Amstelaedamensis Plantae Rariores et Exoticae

Leyden, Apud Fredericum Haringh, 1706.


FIRST EDITION. Large 4to, *4 A-F4, 48 full-page fine botanical engravings by P. Sluyter (Nos 23 and 24 misbound, inverted; Nos 35 and 36 reinforced with backing paper repairs at an early stage, without affecting the illustrations). Vignette on title page, a vase of flowers, and early inscription. Light age yellowing throughout. On verso of original marbled paper wrappers, to the left side of the book, ex libris of Scottish physician and botanist “John Hope MD” (FRSE FRS PRCPE, 1725-86). In 1784 Hope was elected as president of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (1784-6). Early purchase inscription dated Oct. 23(?) 1718 on top of left flyleaf, recto. Wide margins, probably never cut, quite worn and soiled at the beginning and end, without however affecting the text or images. With rare original wrappers of marbled paper bound in; rebound for protection in modern quarter calf and marbled paper over boards. A prestigious provenance;  clean and fresh leaves.

This work was intended as a supplement to the ‘Horti medici Amstelodamensis’, 1697-1701, by Commelin’s uncle. This work “documents the substantial introduction of Cape flora into Europe and includes the first descriptions and illustrations of a number of species, including many aloes” (De Belder, lot 81).

Nissen BBI 388, Pritzel 1836 and Stafleu & Cowan TL2 1185.