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Daniel Good Rare Books and Engravings

1517 Wine, Bagpipes, Virgil, Georgics, Post Incunabula, Gruninger Master

1517 Wine, Bagpipes, Virgil, Georgics, Post Incunabula, Gruninger Master

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Very scarce and much sought after woodcut.  

Depicts the scene in Book 2 of Virgil’s Georgics:

So much for the cultivation of fields, and the stars in the sky:

Now I’ll sing you, Bacchus, not forgetting the saplings

of woodlands, and the children of slow-growing olives.

Here, O Lenaean Father (here all is filled with your gifts,

the field flourishes filled with autumnal vine shoots,

the grape harvest foams in the brimming vats)

here, O Lenaean Father, come, and, free of footwear

plunge naked feet, with me, in the new vintage.

Folio woodcut leaf:


Height: 11.74 in. (29.8 cm)

Width: 7.6 in. (19.3 cm)

Issued in:

Vergilius Maro, Publius;

Opera Vergiliana docte et familiariter exposita (Aeneis Vergiliana cum... commentariis).   

(Lyon: Jacques Sacon for Cyriacus Hochperg, 20 August and 2 December 1517). 

Jodocus Badius Ascensius’s commentary of Virgil’s Aeneid into German (Strasbourg: Johann Grüninger 1517) was accompanied by a startling set of woodcuts from the complete edition of Virgil’s works edited by Sebastian Brant of 1502.   

Research has demonstrated that Brant was involved in the production of the woodcuts as a “concepteur”: the extremely detailed interpretation of the text by means of images implies a thorough knowledge of Virgil’s text, while the resulting visual narrative, in addition to the textual understanding supplied by the Latin writing, creates a striking and absorbing display.  

Bibliographic References: Brunet V, 1282; Baudrier XII, 344; Brun 322; Mambelli 136; Mortimer, Italian Books II, 537; Renouard, Badius Ascensius III, 370; not in Murray, Rothschild.  Original woodcut leaf from 1517 with later hand color.)

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