Hortus Sanitatis

Hortus Sanitatis.Mainz: Jacob Meydenbach, 1491. 

Roughly translated as the “Garden of Health,” this extensively illustrated book catalogs plants, but also animals, fish, birds, stones, and minerals.

An augmented version of the Gart der Gesundheit of 1485, this is probably the most important medical woodcut book printed in the 15th century, and it is notable in its expanded coverage of zoology and the other parts of the natural world.  Including the real and the mythological, those creatures viewed as a threat to man are particularly highlighted, ranging from bedbugs to fire-breathing beasts.

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