Frankfurt: Peter Braubach, 1544.
Quarto: 22 x 16.7 cm. (2), 193, (1) leaves. *2, A-Z8, [et]10
FIRST BRAUBACH EDITION.
Bound in contemporary blindstamped pigskin over wooden boards dated 1546. The boards are blind-ruled in compartments and elaborately tooled with decorative rolls (the Crucifixion, King David -dated 1543, John the Baptist, urns, interlocking sheaves of wheat, and small floral stamps (binding moderately soiled, lacking one clasp, small defects at extremities). Internally a fine, broad-margined copy with a few deckled edges (title lightly soiled, some very minor light soiling or foxing to the margins of the text). Text printed in Greek, with woodcut initials and decorative headpieces at the beginning of each tragedy. Braubach’s Janus device appears on the final leaf. Title printed in red and black.
The tragedies of Sophocles were first printed in Greek by Aldus in 1502. This edition, by Peter Braubach (1500-1567), was based on the Giunta edition of 1522, edited by the prolific humanist Antonio Francini (ca. 1480- after 1537), with certain changes made by the new editor (see Brunet). Braubach has taken pains to set the text (and the Alexandrian scholia, arranged to frame the text of the tragedies) to mimic the aesthetics of the Giunta edition.
Provenance: 1. “A. Rechenberg”, i. e. Adam Rechenberg, 17th century Professor of Greek at Leipzig University, inscription on title. 2. F. C. Kirckhoff, name on pastedown. With occasional manuscript notes, verse numbering, and instances of underlining in the Scholia. Antonio Francini’s original introduction to the Giunta edition of 1522 has been neatly transcribed onto the front pastedown.
This is the edition that Phillip Melanchthon and his Wittenberg colleagues used in preparing a Latin translations of Sophocles’ plays (also printed by Braubach), which they dedicated to England’s King Edward VI in 1547.
Melanchthon’s personal copy of Braubach’s 1544 edition, with his annotations, is now at the Library of Congress. “More than one hundred pages of [Melanchthon’s] personal copy of Sophocles in Greek (1544) bear the thick scrawl of his annotations, many of which migrated into the margins and the translations of the Wittenberg Sophocles.”(Lazarus, Tragedy at Wittenberg). Braubach also printed Melanchthon’s Grammatica Graeca in 1541.
VD 16, S 7033; Adams S 1443; Hoffmann III, 412; Brunet, Manuel du libraire, Vol 4, p.446; for the Giunta edition, see Bandini, Annal Juntar. Pt ii 187, 241.