Rome: Jacob Mascardi, 1616. 4 parts in one volume, 4to (218 x 150 mm). Half-title. 3 engraved titles with the Colonna arms and putti, 152 full-page etched plates, most of plants, the remainder of shells, marine life, insects and a hippopotamus. Borders of typographical ornament. Contemporary vellum, manuscript F on upper cover, manuscript title on spine; cloth slipcase. Provenance: Bard Doctoris Medici (early manuscript ex libris on pastedown); purchased from H.P. Kraus, 1963. From the Collection of Arthur & Charlotte Vershbow. Item #401677
FIRST COLLECTED EDITION. Second edition of parts 1-2 (first published in 1606), first edition of the Pars Altera and De Purpura. Colonna enhanced both the precision of his botanical science and the art of his depictions by being the first to choose the copper plate over the woodblock. He achieved far greater detail, and as Blunt and Stearn note, the plates, "unpretentious though they are have considerable charm" (p.100). The plates are “executed in pure etching ... Moreover, they are botanically accurate, with separate details of flowers and fruit frequently shown” (ibid). The success of De Purpura earned Colonna an early appointment to the Accademia dei Lincei, founded in Rome in 1603. Blunt and Stearn, pp.100-101; Brunet II:172-3; Nissen BBI 385; Nissen ZBI 927 (Purpura); Pritzel 1823.