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Aromatum, et simplicium aliquot medicamentorum apud Indos nascentium historia: ...Antwerp, Christophe Plantin, 1567. 8vo. With Plantin's woodcut compasses device on the title-page and 16 woodcut illustrations in the text (including 6 full-page). 17th-century(?) limp vellum.
Adams O319; Nissen, BBI 949; Voet 1838; Wellcome 4655. First Latin edition, printed and published by Plantin, of an account of the plants, medicines and customs of Asia, especially India, by Garcia de Orta (ca. 1490-1570), a Portuguese Jew whose family fled to Spain and was forced to convert to Catholicism when he was a boy. He sailed to Goa in 1534 as personal physician to the future Portuguese Viceroy of India, M.A. de Sousa. There he spent decades questioning both the local physicians, yogis and merchants, and travellers from lands further east, about medicinal plants. He also read Ibn Sina (Avicenna) in the original Arabic and spoke several other oriental languages. The book takes the form of a series of dialogues between the practitioner Orta himself and the fictitious theoretician Dr. Ruano. It gave most Europeans their first view of Indian medicinal plants and Indian medical practices. He occasionally wanders away from medicine to add facinating information about taming elephants, producing cinnamon, naming chess pieces, fables and travellers' tales. The great Leiden botanist Carolus Clusius translated it into Latin.With bookplate. With the foot margin of 1 leaf cut off, an occasional leaf somewhat foxed and a couple small marginal chips, but otherwise in very good condition.
      [Bookseller: Antiquariaat FORUM BV]
Last Found On: 2017-06-25           Check availability:      NVvA    

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