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De Humana Physiognomonia


De Humana Physiognomonia Libri IV. Dark brown contemporary leather with gilt ooled design and lettering on spine, marbled page edges. Woodcut illustrations throughout featuring comparisons between animal and human faces and expressions, beautifully detailed with some repeating images. 557 pages combined with index. In this treatise, the author attempted to establish a scientific basis for the ancient art of physiognomy, basing a judgement of a person's character on their outer appearance. The idea has come in and out of style multiple times over the centuries, with its use by authors as a character device, and notably by when it was practiced by "mountebanks and vagabonds" in the Middle Ages. In this iteration, Porta uses animal examples to compare with illustrations of various facial expressions and appearances. Binding complete and intact, leather has some repairs. Spine crackled with chips and wear to edges, hinges starting. Small holes in a few scattered pages (result of worming), a few pages toned with mild to moderate foxing throughout. Good. Latin. 

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