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De humani corporis fabrica libri septem. by  Andreas VESALIUS - First Edition - June 1543 - from Peter Harrington (SKU: 126301)

De humani corporis fabrica libri septem.

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De humani corporis fabrica libri septem.

by VESALIUS, Andreas

  • Used
  • hardcover
  • First
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London, United Kingdom
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About This Item

Basel: Johannes Oporinus,, June 1543. The birth of modern anatomy Folio (433 x 295 mm). Early 19th-century sprinkled half sheep, marbled boards, two green morocco labels to spine lettered gilt, smooth spine divided into compartments by double gilt dotted lines and chain links. Housed in a custom slipcase. Woodcut pictorial title page (laid down on thin paper), full-page portrait of Vesalius, probably after Jan Stephan Calkar, 7 large, 186 mid-sized, and 22 small woodcut initials, more than 200 woodcut illustrations, including 3 full-page skeletons, 14 full-page muscle-men, 5 large diagrams of veins and nerves, 10 mid-sized views of the abdomen, 2 views of the thorax, 13 of the skull and brain, and numerous smaller views of bones, organs and anatomical parts, and 2 double-page folds, one of veins and one of nerves. Faint ownership signature of "Ippolito Guarisci" to title page. A little worming to boards and joints, mainly superficial, joints a little tender, tips slightly worn, title page with small holes to edges, sometime repaired with concomitant browning, a few small marginal tears with old neat repairs, folding plates with small reinforcement to verso, old ink stains at outer edge of pp. 335-80, p. 356 mounted on stub, occasional finger-mark, some foxing and marginal dampstaining throughout, more evident at final few leaves, overall presenting well. First edition of Vesalius's magnum opus, the founding text of modern anatomy, which revolutionized the science and teaching of medicine and practice of surgery. "This is the work that, by breaking the stranglehold in which the writings of Galen had gripped anatomical research for the previous twelve centuries, was instrumental in turning researchers away from his pages and sending them back to the prime source: the human body itself" (Richardson, p. ix). Over 200 pioneering anatomical illustrations were incorporated into the text: the highly technical woodcuts, groundbreaking in their realism, were all carefully executed under Vesalius's supervision in Venice. In an unprecedented coalescence of scientific exposition, art, and typography, the De Fabrica became "one of the most beautiful scientific books ever printed" (Grolier). "Galen was not merely improved upon: he was superseded; and the history of anatomy is divided into two periods, pre-Vesalian and post-Vesalian" (PMM). Cf. Adams V-603; Choulant-Frank pp. 178-80; Cushing VI.A.-1; Dibner, Heralds of Science 122; Garrison-Morton 375; Grolier Medicine 18A; Heirs of Hippocrates 281; NLM/Durling 4577; Norman 2137; Printing and the Mind of Man 71; Richardson, William Frank (trans.), On the Fabric of the Human Body, 1998; Stillwell Science 710; Wellcome 6560.


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Peter Harrington GB (GB)
Bookseller Inventory #
De humani corporis fabrica libri septem.
Book condition
Basel: Johannes Oporinus,
Date published
June 1543

Terms of Sale

Peter Harrington

All major credit cards are accepted. Both UK pounds and US dollars(exchange rate to be agreed) accepted. Books may be returned within 14 days of receipt for any reason, please notify first of returned goods.

About the Seller

Peter Harrington

Seller rating:
This seller has earned a 5 of 5 Stars rating from Biblio customers. member since:
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About Peter Harrington

Peter Harrington is currently offering a normal national and international delivery service unaffected by COVID-19. Peter Harrington first started selling rare and antiquarian books from the Chelsea Antiques Market on London's King's Road in 1969, and have since grown to become one of the largest and best known antiquarian bookshops in Europe. Our shop extends over four floors offering up to 20,000 volumes. We also offer a full bookbinding and restoration service, and are members of the ABA and ILAB.


Some terminology that may be used in this description includes:

The decorative application of gold or gold coloring to a portion of a book on the spine, edges of the text block, or an inlay in...[more]
title page
A page at the front of a book which may contain the title of the book, any subtitles, the authors, contributors, editors, the...[more]
Very generally, "leaves" refers to the pages of a book, as in the common phrase, "loose-leaf pages." A leaf is a single sheet...[more]
A folio usually indicates a large book size of 15" in height or larger when used in the context of a book description....[more]
Marbled boards
The outer portion of a book which covers the actual binding. The spine usually faces outward when a book is placed on a shelf....[more]
The page bound on the left side of a book, opposite to the recto page.
First Edition
In book collecting, the first edition is the earliest published form of a book. A book may have more than one first edition in...[more]
The collective of the top, fore and bottom edges of the text block of the book, being that part of the edges of the pages of a...[more]
Morocco is a style of leather book binding that is usually made with goatskin, as it is durable and easy to dye. (see also...[more]

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