The colours of the eyes

Porzio, Simone. De coloribus oculorum.

Florence, Lorenzo Torrentino, 1550.

4to. 57, (1) pp., final bl. f. With 2 large figurated initials. Half vellum (c. 1900).


First edition; rare. "One of the earliest monographs on ophthalmology in which the author attempts to explain the cause of the variety of colors of eyes. The positions of the eyes and the opinions of Aristotle and Galen on the structure of the eye are also discussed. The author lectured on medicine at Pisa from 1546 to 1552 and was also known as a scientist and philosopher" (Becker).

Strong, wide-margined paper; slightly browned and waterstained near beginning, otherwise clean. 17th-c. ownership to t. p. ("Josephus Simonellius Carfaminius [?] emit"; i. e. possibly the Neapolitan painter Giuseppe Simonelli [1648-1710?; cf. Nagler XVI, 438).


Adams P 1959. BM-STC Italian 537. Edit 16, CNCE 34577. Becker 303. Bird 1989. Durling 3742. Graesse V, 419. Hirsch/Hübotter IV, 660 (misdated: "1551"). Osler 3725. Not in Brunet, Ebert, Hirschberg or Waller.

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