Galen. Works. Venice, 1525.

Galen. Works. Venice, 1525.

This work marked a new era in both medical and philological scholarship. The collection's five folio volumes, the climax of nearly 100 years of active scholarship, represent the largest single body of text issued by one of the most important publishers of the Renaissance, the Aldine press. The fall of Constantinople in 1453 had threatened the importance and survival of Greek scholarship, but publications such as those by the Aldine Press secured it. The works of classical authors often had to be pieced together from as many manuscripts as the printer could lay his hands on. Collecting and printing such texts ensured that they were not only preserved but also moved from being the private possessions of a few to being available throughout the scholarly world - and in a standard, corrected form. The Aldine Greek Galen was quickly adopted as authoritative, and was relied on heavily by subsequent translators. The above image shows the anchor and dolphin device of the Aldine Press.