Frankfurt, typis Nicolai Hoffmanni, 1609. 4to. (20 x 16,5 cm).  + 395 +  pp.
Contemporary full vellum, yapp edges, ties missing, several leaves with neat corner repairs not affecting text. Armorial device in gilt to upper cover. The book has been extensively censored with thick black ink and about seven leaves have been excised, an inscription on the title-page brands the book as ”damnato et prohibita”, damned and prohibited.
Provenance: Gengenbach Abbey (inscription dated 1623), a Benedictine foundation and part of the Strasbourg diocese, and a known centre for censorship. The armorial stamp is of abbot Georg (Breuning) de Gengenbach with motto ”Sola gaudet humilitate Deus”. With 18th-century stamp of the University Library at Heidelberg to verso of title.
The work was first published in 1591, this volume is from a later, extended edition.
Philipp Camerarius (1537-1624) was a German jurist and polyhistor, son of the great humanist Joachim Camerarius the Elder and brother of the physician, naturalist and polyhistor Joachim Camerarius the Younger. From 1563 to 1565 he made an educational trip through Italy, where he was held in Rome for two months in 1565 by the Inquisition, threatened with execution and allegedly released only on the intervention of several German ambassadors along with his travel companion Peter Rieter. This process caused a stir and Camerarius wrote a report on his captivity, which circulated handwritten and was printed in 1740.
His ”Opera Horarum Subcisivarum, sive Meditationes Historicae”, appeared in numerous editions, repeatedly expanded, and was translated into the main European languages, becoming a ”portable library" and an international success. Camerarius mixes various elements, including his own experiences and parts of his university speeches, into an entertaining and instructive whole with examples of history, politics, land and natural history, drawn from the academic and extra-academic knowledge of the past and the present, providing a compressed extract of various sources and authors.
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