XIPHILINUS, Joannes (John); DIO CASSIUS
[BINDING] Ek ton Dionos tou Nikaeos Romanikon istorion, apo Pompeiou Magnou mechris Alexandrou tou Mamaias, epitome Ioannou tou Xiphilinou = Dionis Nicaei rerum Romanarum a Pompeio Magno ad Alexandrum Mamaeae, epitome authore Ioanne Xiphilino.
Lutetiae [Paris] : Regiis typis [Robert Estienne], 1551. Quarto (250 x 180 mm), in a striking contemporary binding of reused vellum containing 100 lines of fourteenth century manuscript in Latin, in black with initials in red and green, probably taken from a series of lections for the feast of St Peter, upper and lower boards with later gilt stamped armorial crest (boards lightly rubbed, but the majority of the manuscript still easily legible; small amount of worming at head of spine and top corner of upper board, and some loss of vellum at bottom corner); title with woodcut printer’s device (early ownership inscription crossed out in ink), pp 357, , woodcut headpieces and historiated Greek initials; with the exception of the title (in both Greek and Latin) and imprint (Latin) the text is entirely in Greek, “beautifully printed in the first font of the grecs du roi” (Schreiber), designed by Garamond in 1541; f. a3 and b3 with some repairs (b3 with loss of a few letters), but otherwise a fresh, wide-margined copy.
First edition of the Epitome of Dio, by the eleventh century Byzantine scholar John Xiphilinus. The Epitome was originally conceived as an abridged version of the entire 80 volume history of Rome composed by the Roman historian of Greek origin, Dio (155 – c.235 CE); by the sixteenth century, however, only the last part of Xiphilinus’ manuscript had survived, which treats books 36-80. Covering the period from Pompey and Caesar down to Alexander Severus. It remains the only source we have for the long-lost books 61-80 of Dio’s work.
Schreiber, Estiennes, 108.