THE RARE BOOK AND
MANUSCRIPT LIBRARY
OF COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY

Treasures


10 Aristotle
Ethica Nicomachea, Politica, Economica
Latin manuscript on vellum, 245 leaves, Venice? 1393 (Plimpton 17)
This manuscript, signed and dated at the end of two sections by the copyist Johannes de Francis in 1393, contains Boethius's De consolatione philosophiae, as well as medieval Latin translations of three of Aristotle's works on moral philosophy. The text is decorated with initials in red and blue, within two of which appear portraits of the authors. Two fourteenth century writers contribute textual summaries and extracts from the commentaries of Thomas Aquinas, while two other writers, identified as the humanist Francesco Barbaro (ca. 1393-1454) and his grandson, the classical scholar Ermolao Barbaro (1454-1493), provide emendatory information to the other texts. In his notes, Ermolao Barbaro frequently cites Greek texts disputing with the medieval translator, and he offers variant readings; as shown by his note on verso of folio 176, he used this codex as the basis for a course of lectures on Aristotle at the University of Padua in 1475-1476.
Gift of George A. Plimpton

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