EUCLID; CLAVIUS, Christoph (ed.). Elementorum Libri XV. Accessit XVI. De Solidorum Regularium comparatione… 

Rome, Apud Vincentium Accoltum, 1574.




£ 1,350


8vo, two volumes, of which only the second one is here available. The title is nearly identical to the first one, reading “Posteriores libri sex a x ad xv. Accessit xvi, de Solidorum Regularium comparatione…, ff. 300, A-2O8 2P4. Roman and Italic letter, very little Greek. Title within woodcut architectural frame topped by the emblem of the Society of Jesus, text enclosed in plain rule border, large woodcut printer’s device on verso of final leaf. Decorated woodcut initials and tailpieces. Several diagrams in text. Early marginalia on top of t-p. Upper corner of last three leaves skilfully repaired, no affecting the text. Occasional light spotting throughout. Ink title inscribed by early hand on foot fore-edge. In modern blind-ruled calf over boards, spine in compartments with red morocco label and gilt lettering. An excellent copy, fresh and crisp withal.


This is the second volume only of this 1574 edition of Euclid’s Elementa edited by Christoph Clavius (1537-1612), the Bamberg Jesuit and professor of mathematics at the Collegium Romanum, who supplemented it with his monumental commentary. This Roman publication represents one of the greatest achievements in the history of Renaissance mathematics. “His contemporaries called Clavius ‘the Euclid of the 16th century’. The ‘Elements’, which is not a translation, contains a vast quantity of notes collected from previous commentators and editors, as well as some good criticisms and elucidations of his own” (DSB iii, p. 311).


Adams E-985; de Backer/Somm. II, 1213; Duarte 42; Hoffmann II, 44; STC Italian 238; Steck, pp. 77-78; Thomas-Stanford 19.