Content: Imperfect: plate 13 wanting. Bound with his: Hortvs, nitidissimis omnem per annvim superbiens floribus. (v.3.) In 3 decas, each with 10 plates. Decas II and III have title pages, 'Plantae rariores ... Trew, posteriorum curam et illustrationem suscepit D. Benedictus Christianus Vogel ... et toleratus sumptibus Adamo Ludovico Wirsing.'
Statement of responsibility: D.D. Christophorus Jacobus Trew ; edente Joanne Christophoro Keller, pictore norimbergensi
Biographical/historical: Books meant to distinguish different kinds of plants appear very early in the history of books and their production. Herbals, depicting plants used for healing and those with magical properties, were most often based on the works of the ancient writers, Dioscurides, Apuleius Platonicus, and Pliny the Elder. Preserved in medieval manuscripts, they emerged as a popular category of early printed book. Often they were illustrated with woodcuts.
Rapidly developing printing technology, a revolutionary empirical spirit and the plants discovered in New World explorations in the 16th century, drove the development of books illustrated with more naturalistic and accurate depictions. In works of Dutch, English and French botanical illustrators published in Europe in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, various forms of metal engraving found a place in the manufacture of books.