Frederick Ruysch. Thesaurus Anatomicus... Amsterdam: 1721-1729. Early Latin reprint of this fascinating catalogue of Ruysch's anatomical collection. Ten parts plus two supplemental parts bound into one volume. Quarto. 36; 46; 36; 28; 28; 56; 22; 32; 42; 42, [1, blank]; [32]; [x], 22 pages. With forty-seven plates inserted throughout, five of which are folding. Bound to style in modern quarter mottled calf over marbled paper boards, spine ruled and tooled in gilt in compartments, burgundy gilt morocco lettering label, five raised bands. Some very minor toning, occasional thumbsoiling in text. Some plates edgeworn and chipped and soiled, a few plates reinforced with tissue at edges. A few plates possibly supplied. Still, a near fine set of this beautifully illustrated curiosity. Garrison-Morton 389 (first edition).

    Ruysch gathered a collection of anatomical specimens and curiosities so large, that it was exhibited in several rented houses in Amsterdam. This "cabinet" became so famous, that it became a tourist attraction. Peter the Great eventually purchased the collection. The illustrations are so well-executed, that they "deserve special mention for their whimsical, almost surrealistic, quality: quaintly posed skeletons surrounded by stuffed monsters, strange reptiles, dried plants and sea creatures." (Heirs of Hippocrates 617).

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