Extraordinary facsimile of the manuscript known as The Eighth Sphere, original made in 1560 of the First Book of Knowledge of Astronomy of Alfonso X the Wise, currently in the National Library of Spain.
From the library of Don Jose Bermudez, who in turn had acquired it from the Álvarez de Toledo family, he entered the Royal Library around 1729, when Juan de Iriarte, a calligrapher and later librarian, made the first catalog.
In the middle of the eighteenth century, the “Book of the eighth sphere” was bound together with the copy of “Lapidario”, written on paper and decorated with 40 color drawings. This work was composed around 1570 from the original that is preserved in the Library of the royal monastery of El Escorial (Ms.h.1.15).
In folio 1r, referring to the purchase and with handwriting of different hands, it reads:
“192 reales that make four doubloons to two gold shields.”
“If this work were to be complete, it would be estimated in one hundred doubloons of two gold shields, it seems Original, and the plates are priceless by their great adjustment and beauty. And it has not been printed although it is a royal work, composed and ordered to be done by King Don Alfonso the Wise, and is distinct from his Astronomical Tables. “
In sheet 1v is represented the shield of the “Alvarez de Toledo”, which suggests that the work was ordered to be done by a member of this family; Perhaps the Duke of Alba Fernando Alvarez de Toledo. His shield is repeated in several pages.
Much has been written about the “School of Translators of Toledo”, but there are no elements or documentation about such “Toledo school”. There was, however, a group of scholars who met with the King (wherever he was) and worked collaboratively under his direction.
Alfonso X did not make copies of the codices that came to his hands. Previously they were studied and debated, and finally a different manuscript was composed after consulting the sources, updating them when it was necessary. The final result was passed on to copyists and illuminators, whose workshop was also scattered (Seville and Toledo mainly), when not traveling.
Features of this beautiful facsimile edition:
Facsimile format of 29.5 x 41.7 cm. 100 pages, almost all of them illustrated. Bound in leather with 5 ribs on loin, dry irons. Presented in a box-case format 30.5 x 43 x 5 cm.
Dating back to: 1560. 16th century.
Miniatures: 46 spheres of the Codex Alfonsi, more decorated capitulares.
Writing: Two columns of 47 lines (8.5 x 28 cm).
Study book: Translation, comments and study. Book Condition: Good. Format 22 x 30.5 cm. 148 pages.
Issued numbered and limited to only 350 copies, certified notary.
Exemplary new, in perfect condition.
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