Le Demosterion. Roch LE BAILLIF, sieur de la Rivière. d. 1598.
Le Demosterion.
Le Demosterion.
“A PROVINCIAL AUTODIDACT…A BIGOT, A FUNDAMENTALIST” — TREVOR-ROPER

Le Demosterion.

Rennes, [J. du Clos] for P. Le Bret 1578.

4to. [xvi], 190 [r. 202], [2 blank]p. and TWO FOLDING PLATES WITH LETTERPRESS AND WOODCUTS. One nearly full-page chiromantic woodcut, two divisional title-pages, a Le Bret anchor device on the main and second divisional title (dated 1577).

Contemporary vellum (soiled and stained), later manuscript spine title, evidence of four pigskin ties, slightly overlapping edges, ruled in red.

Only Antiquarian Edition: “The Demosterion provides the most extensive documentation of early French Paracelsianism” (Baudry, tr.). Half in French and half in Latin, its six parts present an introduction to Paracelsian doctrine, a distillation of its principles into three hundred bilingual aphorisms, a work on divination, a dictionary of Paracelsian terms, a chiromantic essay and a balneological and mineralogical description of Brittany. Together, the texts address alchemy, geomancy, astrology, ethics, dietetics, physiology, pathology and cures for ulcers, leprosy, edema, plague, gout and paralysis.
     Schematic, the first plate outlines which remedy cures which ailment according to Paracelsian principles. The second plate has a large woodcut with the phases of the Moon passing through a sidereal month, noting enterprises and therapies favored on each day along with astrological influences.
     Complete and in good condition (ink spots on the plates), two contemporary title inscriptions (one dated 1579), 19th-century manuscript shelf labels.
¶Trevor-Roper, “The sieur de la Rivière, Paracelsian physician to Henri IV” in Science, Medicine, and Society in the Renaissance: Essays to Honor W. Pagel ed. Debus (1972) II: 227-50; Baudry, Contribution à l’étude du paracelsisme en France au XVIe siècle (1560-1580)…Le Demosterion de Roch Le Baillif passim & 217,2; Sudhoff, Bibliographia paracelsica 181a n.; Duveen, Bibliotheca alchemica 343-4 “very rare”; Brunet III: 897 “rare et curieux”.

Item #10732

Price: $17,500.00