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The Reconstructed Libraries of European Scholars, 1450-1700
Series One: The Books and Manuscripts of John Dee, 1527-1608

Part 5: John Dee's Annotated Books from the Library of the Royal College of Physicians, London

Part 5 continues the focus on the European printed books which were once part of John Dee’s Library. All these items are drawn from the holdings of the
Dorchester Library at the Royal College of Physicians, London which contains the largest surviving group of Dee's printed books. Subjects covered range across many disciplines:

  • Alchemy and Botany.
  • Angels and Magi.
  • Philosophy and Theology.
  • The History of Rome and the Holy Roman Empire.
  • The History of Britain, France, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands.
  • Military and Naval Arts.
  • Science, Medicine and Anatomy.
  • Memory.
  • Women.
  • Latin language and literature, Saxon grammar and historical dictionaries.

Places of publication include Antwerp, Anvers, Basel, Florence, Frankfurt, Lausanne, Lyon, Paris, Rome, Venice and Wittenberg.

There are books by Boccaccio, Cicero, Conti, Florus, Guicciardini, Marienello, Ovid, Pantaleon, Paracelsus, Pausanias, Plotinus, Porphyry, Postel, Roffignac, Sansovino, Scaliger, Voerthusius and Zonaras.

This project will prove of great interest to scholars exploring the history of collecting printed books. It also provides much detail for those interested in Dee's marginalia and annotations; it comprises excellent source material for everyone interested in knowing what books were available to Dee, his friends, colleagues and students. Finally, it brings together a wide range of material for students of the Renaissance, both in England and on the continent of Europe.

"Dee stood in the middle of the sixteenth century, at the watershed between magic and science, looking back at one and forward to the other. Central to all these interests was a great library, the largest that had ever been built up by one man in England. Dee’s omnivorous reading and the availability of his library to others fed many of the intellectual streams of Elizabethan England...."
Julian Roberts
Consultant Editor for this microfilm project,
Former Keeper of Printed Books, Bodleian Library, Oxford and co-editor, with Andrew G Watson, of John Dee's Library Catalogue (The London Bibliographical Society, 1990).

Digital Guide
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