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Preceptorium divine legis venerabilis patris, fratris Iohannis Nider, sacre theologie professoris ordinis predicatorum (Cologne: Ludwig von Renchen, 1485); [Iohannes Gobi, O.P.], Scala coeli (Louvain: Johannes de Westfalia [i.e, Johann von Paderborn], 1485) .

This volume binds two separate printed books, each containing a popular work by a Domincan author. The first volume contains the Preceptorium of the German Dominican, Iohannes Nider (ca. 1380-1438), who was Vicar of reformed convents in the German province, Prior of the convents in Nuremberg and Basel, and was an active participant in the Council of Basel. The Preceptorium contains ten books or "precepts" on the virtues, the sacraments, penance, the vices, etc. The text in this volume is preceded by an extensive alphabetical table of topics and a table of chapter headings. Apparently, this is the only copy of the edition in the United States. Nor is the edition listed in Joachim Schüling's catalogue of books printed by Ludwig von Renchen in Cologne. In this copy, the first recto of the text of the Preceptorium is decorated with flourished initials, some illuminated with gold, and a floriate border design. An ex-libris on the first folio of the alphabetical table states that the book once belonged to the Jesuits of Oudenaarde in Flanders (Belgium).

The second book bound in the volume was printed by Johann von Paderborn (see catalogue n° 25). Much less is known about Iohannes Gobi, who was at one time the Prior of the convent of Aix in Provence (1323-24). The Scala celi is a spiritual treatise arranged topically, chapter-by-chapter, in alphabetical order, from Abstinentia to Usura. A list of these topics precedes the text. As the topics fall out, the text does not chart a progressive ascent to heaven, as the title and the hand-drawn diagram opposite the first folio of the text seem to promise. This volume once belonged to Robert Hoe, a famous nineteenth-century American collector (inside front cover).

References: Goff G-313 (Gobi); GW no 10947 (Gobi); Kaeppeli nos 2540 (Nider), 2369 (Gobi).

Catalogue No. 28
Call Number: Rare Books BX 1749 .N534 1485      Catalog Record, ALEPH Record

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