Cremonae: Apud Petrum Ricchini, 1757. Half Vellum. 8vo (23.8cm x 16.5cm). Large paper copy. Two works bound together. Later half vellum and marble boards with new brown calf label; red speckled edges. Binding is very good with a few minor wormholes at upper areas of rear hinge, not through rear end paper. Collation: [10 ff.], 116, 22, pp.; xii, 3-32pp. Text is exceptionally clean and bright. One page has two Copy comes from an Italian book collector who kept the book in pristine condition. These two publications were originally published as pamphlets. The first title is divided into two parts. The first concerns Ghisi’s medical practice in Cremona: activities with disease and illnesses, with numerous literature citations referenced in text; details in foot notes. The second part contains his detailed analysis of diphtheria epidemic, “Istoria delle angine epidemiche.” The second title is an edited copy of Andrea Bellunensi’s 1602 Latin translation of Ibn al-Baytar’s Arabic treatise on lemon- De Limonibus, Tractatus Embitar Arabis, per Andream Bellunensem Latinitate donatus … The Latinized name of Ibn al-Baytar is Ebembitar. Andrea Bellunensis is the pseudonym of Andrea Alpago.
Ghisi dedicates the De Limonibus to Don Paulo Valcarenghi under whom he studied in Cremona, Italy. Dr. Valcarengi was “a doctor of some renown who had founded a practical school of medicine in Cremona” (DSB V. p.384) In his dedication to Dr. Valcarenghi, Dr. Ghisi discusses the history of Andrea Bellunensi (Andrea Alpago), Avicenna and Greek physicians and Alpago’s Latin translation of Ibn al-Bitar’s Arabic treatise on Lemons, De Limonibus.
Ghisi further notes the importance to have a correct accurate text. Careful comparison of digitized copies of De limonibus by Alpago and Ghisi, respectively, reveals that there are occasional clear difference not only in text with addition of a few words here and there, but grammatical punctuation as well. Thus, the edited text of De Limonibus has made valuable minor text and punctuation corrections, improving the readability of details for lemon morphology, quality of fruit, medicinal properties to name a few.
Ghisi’s desired that his work on De Limonibus be an improvement of Andrea Bellunensi’s translation of the Arabic text of the physician, Ibn al-Bitar. He was successful in this effort. Very good. Item #0000802
This is a fine rare copy of the first citrus book originally written in Arabic and later translated in 1602 by Andrea Bellunensi (Alpago) into Latin. Ghisi’s 1757 edited copy of De Limonibus has added clarity to Alpagos’ text. As such, this is the definitive Latin edition for De Limonibus. No other edition or editing has appeared since Ghisi’s 1757 publication.
Andrea Alpago was a physician who lived in the sixteen century. “About this time the doctrines of the Arabian physicians were commonly taught in the Italian schools, and the works of Avicenna were held in high reputation. In his eagerness to become more fully acquainted with these works, and to read them in their original tongue, Alpago was induced to travel into the East, and spent much time in obtaining a knowledge of the Arabian language. He went to Cyprus and Egypt, and he is said to have remained thirty years in the East, making his principal residence at Damascus. On his return to Italy, he was presented with a chair of medicine in the school at Padua; he died suddenly a few months after his appointment. The labours of Alpago were principally directed to the works of Avicenna and other Arabian physicians many of which he translated into Latin,” which included “Embitaris Tractatus de Limonibus ab Andr. Alpago La tinitate donatus Parisiis 1602,” (Soc. Diff. Useful Knowledge, 1843. pp. 309-310)
Ghisi was a physician in Cremona, Italy. He then studied under Paolo Valcarenghis in Cemona before moving to Florence. He returned to Cremona to practice and in 1747-1748 combated an epidemic, which struck a large number of children and adolescents in the Cremona region. Ghisi made careful clinical and meteorological observations on the epidemic, publishing the results in a pamphlet entitled Lettre mediche del Dottor M. Ghisi. Of particular note is the section entitled “Istoria delle angine epidemiche,” the first truly complete scientific description of diphtheria. (DSB V, p.384). Little is known about Ghisi’s interest in De Lemonibus other than what he mentions in the dedication to Dr. Valcarenghis. He may have provided lemon juice to children and adults that he attended. (Haller v.1, p. 200; Nat. Lib. Med. 18th Century, p.174; Sequier p.2).