EARLY TREATISE ON MEDICINAL PLANTS OF THE ORIENT
ACOSTA, Cristobal. TRATTATO DI CHRISTOFORO ACOSTA AFRICANO Medico, & Chirurgo della Historia, Natura et Virtu delle Droghe Medicinali, & altri Semplici rarissimi, che vengono portati dalle Indie Orientali in Europa. Con le Figure delle Piante ritratte, & disegnate dal vivo poste a luoghi proprii. Venice, Francesco Ziletti, 1585. Second edition, first in Italian. Translated from the Spanish of the first edition (Burgos, 1578). Contains 45 full page woodcuts of plants and fruit "drawn from life in their native habitats," some quite lovely, plus printer's device and several decorative capitals. [lii], 342 pp. Quarto. Early vellum with small splits at spine ends. A small library stamp on title-page and one other text page, but no other marks. Foxing and a few browned pages; early marginalia on a few pages; corner torn off pp. 323- 324, with minimal intrusion into text; quarter-inch burn hole to same page. Cristobal Acosta first travelled to India as a soldier in 1550, then as a doctor to India and China in 1668. After collecting many plant specimens he practiced medicine in Burgos for eleven years. He owes much of his information to Garcia de Orta, to whom he gives credit. (Wellcome 20; G&M see 1819; Durling 1066; Pritzel 13).